Thursday, March 16, 2006

Girl in Rogers Park - Queen Anne Hill

This photo was taken in the spring of 2005. The girl was a student at SPU where I did my undergraduate work in the late 60s. This shot reminds me of something by Monet or Renoir or Matisse, anyway that was what I was trying for a girl in a park on a sunny sunday afternoon.

I have a story to tell about Rogers Park.

It was sunny day during spring quarter 1969 at Seattle Pacific College and I was walking in Rogers Park on Queen Anne Hill a few blocks from the ship canal when I struck up a conversation with a young man who's hair was a little longer than mine. He started talking about Jesus and saying all sorts of things I had heard from other folks who looked and acted just like him. They were called "Jesus Freaks" back then. Anyway, he invited me up to his "house" on Queen Anne hill to meet some of his "family". I followed him up the hill to a large house in an old neighborhood. Nothing much happened during my 45 minute visit with the Love Family. A few people were sitting on the carpet in the living room meditating. I was offered a cup of market spice tea. There wasn't a lot of talking and when someone did talk they seemed to always be speaking in parables and quoting scripture. I left after a while and felt a sense of relief to be back out in the sunshine. There was something a little too "heavy" about the Love Family for my tastes. They invited me to come back again. I didn't.

From the WWW:
"The Love Family was a U.S. communal religious movement led by Love Israel. Formally called the Church of Jesus Christ at Armageddon, the Love Family began in 1968 when the community began living collectively in a community on Queen Anne Hill."

Really Bad Art

An improved version of Bad Art plus some more of the same.

This post is to remind viewers that the best stuff was posted first and is now buried in the archives so if you want to see the serious work you would be better off going to the early posts and working forward.

The posts titled Mark Toby, North Beach, Recent Work and anything else with trees or water taken with long lenses represent my attempt to pick up where I left off thirty some years ago with Frosted Tree and the water reflections Neah Bay. These early works were all taken with long lenses from 200mm, 300mm, 500mm. My current camera is an ultra-zoom which gives me the same look in one package. The long lens has two major advantages. It allows you to isolate your subject and it flattens the perspective. Having sort of grown up with abstract expressionism, I found the flat look suited me. I was looking for a way to do representational work that could be read (viewed) as an abstraction. It wasn't an intellectual thing but a feeling I got from looking at these flat images and how do you explain a feeling?

In the early 70s one of my artist friends Cathy Kushe was working on her MFA at the U of W and the professor who was in charge of her thesis project was demanding that she do nonrepresentational paintings for her thesis project. She worked out a clever solution, doing representational paintings that would pass as abstractions. Later on I had one of here thesis paintings hanging in my apartment when I was in graduate school and also a very stunning work by her husband Dave, a surrealist crucifixion.