…and the first rule of How to Quit Amazon and Shop in an Actual Bookstore:

In every bookstore, there is a book that is perfect for you, right now, at this exact moment of your life. That book will change you. Your job is to find it. It probably won’t happen right away. When you go to a bookstore, schedule a good half-hour there. You spend half an hour at the barber don’t you? You can spend at least the same amount of time looking over the life’s work of strangers who only want to make something you’ll love.

Quiet weekend with friends and family – might hit up the Westport Fine Arts Festival on Sunday. Don’t have the money to buy but have the time to look and admire good work. Lightening the heart is sometimes often more satisfying than lightening the pocketbook.

Time to get away from the left click and wander…

tomineMissed Connection
by Adrian Tomine
Originally published in the August 24, 2009 issue of The New Yorker

[h/t to Biblioklept for the lead in to the artwork...]

Ten rules of type by designer James Victore – apply willingly:

10 rules

I’m partial to #9 – doesn’t always work but amazing who you meet along the way…

[h/t to this isn't happiness for the lead in...]

…time to hit the (key)boards…

My old IBM Selectric II with interchangeable type balls and correcting features has been calling my name from the basement. I often wonder what it would be like to get back to a real keyboard…that mechanical sound of work being done was never replaceable…no matter how hard they tried…

[Dennis the Menace created by Hank Ketcham...]


 - From the opening to the book Hana, a collection of duotone still lifes
by Yasuhiro Ishimoto

Yasuhiro_Ishimoto_011photo by Yasuhiro Ishimoto

artists obsessed

[New Yorker panel by illustrator Edward Sorel, published April 24, 1995, from the Conde Nast collection]

Ralph Goings explains his photorealistic process of moving from the camera to the canvas:

My interest in all of the things I’ve painted has been their visual aura, and in the process of translating the image to paint on canvas, I do things to enhance this. Painting from a photograph serves a similar function as a frame in that it helps to isolate this fragment of reality like a frame does. And the process I use—taking the photograph, projecting it, drawing it, and then painting it—puts four different levels of interpretation between the actuality and the finished painting. During these steps the thing that is out there that was the beginning loses its importance. What’s here in the painting is ultimately what I’m after.

ralph in studio Ralph Goings working in his studio, 1972
photo by Mack Law
from Ralph Goings: Essay/Interview

[Images of Ralph Goings paintings can be found on his site...]

…how’s your summer list going?

New Yorker panel by Peter Steiner]

Light activity this weekend with Saturday afternoon reserved at the photo gallery. Sunday may sit down with something cold and drink in a few images I’ve been studying. First the photorealistic style of Ralph Goings in Ralph Goings: Essay/Interview (more on a Goings interview here…)

Then move on to the representational composition of Edward Hopper: An American Master. Both artists are almost in direct contrast to each other in style – but sometimes you have to look at the opposites in order to appreciate both.

A polar front coming in from the north next week…and you were complaining about the heat and humidity?


On the Nature of Understanding
by Kay Ryan

Say you hoped to
tame something
wild and stayed
calm and inched up
day by day. Or even
not tame it but
meet it halfway.
Things went along.
You made progress,
it would be a
lengthy process,
sensing changes
in your hair and
nails. So it’s
strange when it
attacks: you thought
you had a deal.

Kay RyanKay Ryan

Through photography I’ve come to realize that the creative process is based on three stages -




The revelation of any creative idea needs to be fed thru those three stages. Each has its own knowledge base, it’s own learning curve, its own need for depth of work and length of time. Any of those stages can lead to degrees of frustration and resistance and can prevent you from successfully reaching the next.

All of those stages demand determination and most importantly, repetition.

Brooks Jensen, in Letting Go of the Camera, writes:

Define a project and work with intensity and discipline to produce a large number of images. Then edit to a finite, final selection. To repeatedly approach the same subject over and over again, as Weston did with his peppers, is a method more likely to produce significant results than random image-making in search of the elusive greatest hits.

He adds one more thought:

The process and progress are more important than any single image or result.

To learn the work you have to do the work. And although you have to understand the tools you work with and the process you follow either with software, hardware, paints, metal, or stone, that final finished piece is dependent on how much time you’ve put in, and the physical, creative, and intelligent hours you’ve extended.

Curiosity is a necessity. Everywhere is a classroom.

artist workingArtist working (India)
Nadine Le Prince

…and just in case you wanted to know…

no barbecueFound in print edition of  Newsday, 7/7/14

Vacation week is over – in-laws are back at home in North Carolina, #1 Daughter is on her way to the Big Interview and #1 Son left at 4:30 AM to train incoming young and restless athletes. The Brunette and I have headed back to our usual professional destinations although the weekend proved to be a stimulating one having met both photographers and painters in our newly widening circles. The Brunette has a photo up at B.J. Spoke Gallery in Huntington, a first for her and a well deserved coming-out for an artist worth waiting for.

Despite the 4th washout up here in the Northeast corridor, we managed to fire up the bar-b several times during the week and weekend. If anyone wants to complain about the weather, I have a few photos on file from our relentlessly long winter I can forward.

So we start new again…as we do every day, yes?

monday morningGarfield
by Jim Davis


© Bill Israel

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