All packed and ready for tomorrow... I think.
For those of you who maybe missed it... I'm off to the Salvation Army's East & West Scotland Summer School tomorrow morning for the week.
Olly is not coming with me... which is a bummer. I will miss her & the we'ans. Got a wee Polaroid of the three of them... a wee reminder of how wonderful they all are.
I will be blogging my experiences... as best I can... and taking loads of pics with my Nikon, Polaroid, Holga & iPhone.
If you pray... please pray for unity & cooperation within the School... that we may all work together for the glory of God... and not the glory of man.
Its going to be fun... I can't wait.
Friday, July 31, 2009
All packed and ready for tomorrow... I think.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
I didn't intend to take this picture tonight... I have no idea who the chap is in the pic nor do I have any thought as to why he considered it acceptable to photograph the Soup Van and the queue of folks waiting to be served.
I actually was quite blatant about taking the photo... but either he didn't notice or didn't care.
I found his behaviour rude and... if I am honest... rather dangerous.
We do not take photographs as a rule because we don't want to put a barrier between us and the folks we serve... some of which would prefer not to have their photo taken.
He was rude because he didn't ask... and he took a chance because he would have met with some strong opposition if he'd been spotted.
In hindsight... whilst I appreciate what he's trying to do... it still seems wrong to me and probably explains why I prefer to take pictures of buildings or people I know. People need a choice.
In this case... beggars can be choosers. For some people, choice is all they have.
I have spoken before about the abstraction of homeless folks from a group of individual folks with individual needs... to an entity... a "them". To destroy this abstraction... we need to personalise the folks we meet... get to know their names... listen to their story... be mindful to their needs and give them a choice as to how we can meet the needs they identify. We need to give them a choice.
People deserve the common courtesy to be asked whether or not they wish to have their photo taken. Not an easy task considering the number of folks present.
I just hope he got an awesome image that will be used to the benefit of the homeless in Glasgow.
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
"/..The protesters had banners with ‘The Bible is God’s Perfect Creation’ on one of them. Again the irony seemed to escape them. Their complaint, apart from being against anyone not being straight, is that the Bible is being defaced, not that God’s creations, people, are being hurt and discriminated against.Making the point :: Stewart Cutler
I like the Bible. I have lots of them. I’ve written on some of them. I’ve thrown some in the bin. I’m not worried that I’ll go to Hell for that because it’s a book, a special book, but a book. And the minute it becomes more than that it becomes an idol../"
I saw the protestors too... but haven't popped in to see the exhibit for myself. I will... but, to be honest, I prefer to spend my lunch hour in the company of folk like Stewart... whose comments on the whole malarky are well worth reading.
Sunday, July 26, 2009
This is my second painting... entitled "Trees at the Pavilion"... because it simply shows three trees that reside and clean NoMo's air at the Pavilion. It is based on this picture:
I'm not sure about this painting malarky, to be honest. I found it horrendously frustrating last night... got all stressed... and got all crabbit (sorry Olly, Dayna & Miriam).
Thing is... I love the ability to create something from nothing... but I feel so inadequate... so small. So much so I've been all angsty - I feel I am so mediocre with everything I do: photography... blogging... creating space for church... theology... podcasting... being a husband & parent... the works. I'm not a confident person and I feel really humbled... leveled, in fact... by this.
Will there be another painting..? Of course there will... I just need to work on it... and that's the thing. How dare I think... in all my arrogance... that I could watch a couple of episodes of BOB ROSS, buy some supplies & create wonders... I need to work at it.
I recently read OUTLIERS by Malcolm Gladwell (which I strongly recommend to everyone reading this inane rant) and realise that success comes through opportunity and HARD WORK... 10,000 hours of effort, at least.
This is my second painting for goodness sake!
Anyway... I hope you get what I mean. Enjoy it, if you can... and I hope you can follow me on this journey that I'm on.
Saturday, July 25, 2009
For my 11,000th tweet & 2,817th blog post... I want to highlight the work Mark Horvath aka @hardlynormal is doing. He is currently undertaking a roadtrip across America to highlight the plight of the nation's homeless... filming as he goes for invisible people.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
I was off work today with a dodgy tummy. I tried to use the time off wisely and decided to finally put paint to canvas (I've had the various bits and pieces for a while now). The painting was inspired by the photo below...
... which was taken on Rhyll beach whilst on holiday this year. I have received favourable compliments from Olly and my folks... and intend to keep at it.
Anyway, in the spirit of web2.0 openness etc... I'll put myself out there and ask... what do you think?
I am stoked to have inherited my grandpa's Ensign All Distance Folding Camera. I didn't know what it was but did a wee hunt on the 'tinterweb and found it here. It was made in the UK and shoots 120mm medium format film. If I can work out how to load / unload it... I might just give it a go to see if it still works. Would make a nice addition to my camera kit if it does.
I'm not sure why I have a current obsession with film cameras. I think it has something to do with authenticity and tangibility. Authenticity in that I have become accustomed to the various classic effects that the iPhone can produce... I love their aesthetic and want to use the original; and tangibility in that I like the touchy/feely nature of an actual printed photograph.
Thing is... according to readwriteweb this is THE most popular YouTube video to date. As at the time of posting it has received 123,089,726 views... 123 MILLION views. That said... I have watched it twice... but OMGoodness. If there was a "per play" fee attached to this vid... the chap wouldn't need to work again.
Thomas,I am so stoked by this... and can't wait until the 7th August. Here's the pics Cousin Silas refers to in his note:
All being well, the album Uncertainty, should be ready for downloading on the 7th August. It’s on the Just Not Normal Net Label, complete with artwork by Jesus Olmo, and there are (surprise surprise) two tracks in and amongst the 13 that are ‘dedicated’ to you due to the fact that both these tracks were directly inspired by your photos.
One is the Chimney & Ladder jobby, and other is Strathclyde Park Loch 2…
Make of them what you will my friend. A healthy mix of dark and light, calm and unsettling.
Hope you and yours are well.
Strathclyde Park Loch #2
Made my day!
Monday, July 20, 2009
I thought this was fascinating. Here's the info from the YouTube page:
For My 24 birthday i thought, it was better to give than receive. So i made you all this video. This was my first time experimenting with my own version of Walt Disney's Mulitplane Camera. I hope you like it.I did... nice job! More details here.
(via notcot #23,448 with thanks)
Since the beginning of the financial crisis, there have been two principal explanations for why so many banks made such disastrous decisions. The first is structural. Regulators did not regulate. Institutions failed to function as they should. Rules and guidelines were either inadequate or ignored. The second explanation is that Wall Street was incompetent, that the traders and investors didn’t know enough, that they made extravagant bets without understanding the consequences. But the first wave of postmortems on the crash suggests a third possibility: that the roots of Wall Street’s crisis were not structural or cognitive so much as they were psychological.../COCKSURE - Banks, battles, and the psychology of overconfidence by Malcolm Gladwell
This article in the New Yorker is on the theme of what Malcolm Gladwell spoke on when he was in Glasgow recently. Well worth a read.
(via a tweet from swissmiss)
(via a tweet from PolaPremium)
Sunday, July 19, 2009
I checked out the Sleeve Art exhibition at the Motherwell Heritage Centre... and I was inspired & disappointed in almost equal measure. Here's the context of the exhibit:
I was encouraged by the albums I already acknowledge as beautiful pieces of art...
- The Beatles' "Revolver"
- Love's "Forever Changes"
- King Crimson's "In the court of the Crimson King"
- Led Zeppelin's "Physical Graffiti"
- OMD's "Architecture & Morality"
- John Coltrane's "Coltrane plays the blues"
- The Drifters' "I'll take you where the music's playing"
- Bob Dylan's "Bringing it all back home"
- Vanilla Fudge
- John Lennon & the Plastic Ono Band's "Live peace in Toronto 1969"
- Derek & the Dominos' "Layla"
- Emerson, Lake & Palmer's "Pictures at an exhibition"
- Bette Midler
- Junior Melvin's "Police & Thieves"
- Talking Heads' "More songs about buildings and food"
- Art of noise's "In no sense? nonsense!"
- Joy Division's "Closer"
When I consider faith... that is, my faith in Jesus... I am struck by the thought that we need compassion and compliance. Not just to live compassionate and compliant lives... as in to display all the attributes of someone who is compassionate and compliant... but to BE the compassion and compliance that I believe is necessary to live a life of love in Jesus' name. Let me explain.
The compassion bit is easy to grasp... I am to love God and love our neighbour. I am to love because God first loved us. He loved me so much that He sent Jesus to become the new way to a life lived in all its fullness.
My faith is founded on compassion - love for God / love for the other... if I do not speak/act/think/live in love then I fall short of all that God intends for me.
Compassion is easy to grasp... but not so easy to be. Loving those who do not love us is counter-intuitive... and, at times, very hard to do.
As for compliance... that's not so easy to grasp for me. Compliance is about conforming in accordance with the will of someone or something outwith ourselves.
Conforming isn't a positive attribute for me... certainly not as straightforward as caring for someone or something. I don't do conformity very well and yet... ironically... I subscribe / conform to patterns of thought on a regular basis.
Maybe its the anti-establishment / DIY ethos of punk that has its influence here... but my initial thoughts on conformity & conforming are that of revulsion - following the herd... going with the follow... uniformity... sheep... you get where I am coming from.
But I believe I must seek... in all I do... to "be like Christ". I must conform to Him & HIs teaching. This should be the one & only judgement on my life - am I living like Him?
I don't believe we should be conformed to any other standard than this... especially someone else's view of what being "like Christ" means. This goes as far as saying I am not bound to the Law of the Old Testament but am bound to the grace that comes in Jesus. I am not held to the legalism of the Pharisees but to the grace of the New Testament.
If I don't show compassion & love then can I say I am being like Him?
Thing is... compliance isn't just about conforming... it is also about cooperation. Its about working with something in obedience as well as being "forced" to do something.
I must be obedient to the teachings of Jesus & the leading of His Holy Spirit. In doing so, I work with them... I cooperate with them in the greater plan that is the Kingdom of God.
My faith isn't based on what I do but on God's love & compassion... but in this... I am transformed & seek to embody this transformation in what I do. I will seek to be like Christ... be obedient to Him & work with Him for the Kingdom.
I can't be obedient & seek to cooperate with Him without compassion... they are not mutually exclusive but go hand-in-hand. Its all about my thought AND deed... faith AND works... compassion AND compliance.
In the end, I can't love without obeying as much as I can't obey without loving.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
I love art that is created with tools that are easily attainable for free or at a low cost... think Polaroid which was once a cheap and easily sourced product or even the Lomo cameras that are now fetishized but were once "junk".
That's why I am excited about this video by Roche Limit aka Dave Righton... because it was made using Google's Sketchup - this is free software from Google used with tremendous effect to create a powerfully unique & inspiring video... to compliment what is a fab song.
I saw this on offworld.com and was very impressed. It is a trailer for the upcoming game Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet and is visually stunning. It grabbed my attention almost instantly.
I recommend reading up on the project via Michel Gagne's blog... his posts provide an insight into the creation of the game.
Can't wait for the game to drop... albeit... its on formats that I don't have - PC & XBOX.
Friday, July 17, 2009
Sunday, July 12, 2009
I haven't blogged much lately... the ol' nanolog has become more of a travelog than a blog... but hope to rectify this soon.
In the meantime... I thought I'd post this pic of Dayna. I shudder to think what "e" numbers were in that slush she had.
Friday, July 10, 2009
Tuesday, July 07, 2009
Monday, July 06, 2009
Olly's folks popped in to see us tonight & I thought I'd snap them ... in the spirit of remembering the significant people in our lives.
PS... They are pictured with Olly's fab copa fragola.
[Sent from my iPhone]
Sunday, July 05, 2009
Saturday, July 04, 2009
Thursday, July 02, 2009
Can't believe tomorrow is our last full day here. It's been a blast ... and we intend to finish on a high ... on a beach somewhere. Tx