Saturday, November 27, 2010

Poetry birthday present...

Thanks to an early Christmas present, my computer has a new hard drive -albiet a cheap Western Digital. After 6 months of constant freezing of programs, requiring turning off and waiting an hour, it's a phenomenal relief to be able to use my iMac again. No idea how I produced as much as I have with an ailing computer.

In celebration, I burned a CD today of Starfire - mostly the whole album of my love poems, though there are a few I haven't yet done... for a birthday present.

Now that everything is working again, hopefully I can finish the album and get it uploaded to Jamendo in the next few months.





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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

How to create a custom YouTube video player for your blog or website



A selection of my videopoems. As a painter and poet, I, like many, are drawn to the video medium, where I experiment with delighted abandon.

After a fruitless hour of searching for and trying out widgets, and then discovering YouTube itself offers the ability to create a custom video player for your website -though you won't find this handy feature in any of the drop down menus at your YouTube site- I created this one for my website!


This is how you create one of these neat players:


1. Sign in to your YouTube account.

2. Paste http://www.youtube.com/custom_player into the browser.

3. Create your embeddable player. Note: you can create a 'playlist' selection of your videos for use in this custom player, or use any of your other playlists, or simply include everything you've uploaded.

To create a custom playlist, I backtracked. I clicked on the videos I wished to show in my player one at a time and added them to a new playlist that I called "My Videopoetry." Then I returned to the custom player page and made that playlist my choice for what videos to show in the player.

4. YouTube will create the html you can embed in your blog or at your site. Copy and paste.

5. Later, when you want to find that page again paste http://www.youtube.com/my_players into your browser.

Currently using these urls is the only way to access this neat feature of YouTube - so be sure to favourite them for easy access in the future.




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Sunday, November 21, 2010

Silently Censored!

First I laughed, then I became livid.

Look, the process of creation begins with lovemaking. Conception occurs deep within the woman when her precious egg accepts the fertilization of a man's sperm. Lovemaking is a man's only bodily pleasure in the process of creating new life. It's all he's given.

The woman's body takes over. Pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding, these are only her experiences. He can never know what these incredible processes feel like. He is shut out of the deepest mysteries of the beginnings of embodied life.

Personally I think this is one of the most unfair aspects of existence. I regale against it.

But it's reality. Perhaps those unsubbers are into artificial insemination for everybody? What a dry life that would be!

My lovers illustrate the beginning of the story. The story of the maternal body, of the birth of new life.

So I've lost a couple of subscriptions. Really I don't care, but my current art project, to have some paintings of the beginning of the process of birth, is clearly misunderstood.

What I've decided is to remove the posts with the images, though I will leave the album intact at Picasa. I may make it findable only if you have the link, I haven't decided. I may upload new drawings or paintings here for a day or so, and then remove them, not sure.

Incensed is what I am.




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Sunday, November 14, 2010

Michelangelo Antonioni: 'Identificazione di una donna/Identification of a Woman' (1982)




Some thoughts I had on Antonioni's 'Identificazione di una donna/Identification of a Woman' (1982), now a review at IMDB:

While I feel that Antonioni was perhaps attempting to create too much of a plot in this film, and he almost creates 'a story' with a twist and a climax and a resolution, yet he cannot ultimately play by the Artistotelian rules of what drama is. We come so close, though. I savour that closeness, it is like the scene of Niccolo and Mavi driving through the fog. We sense ultimate meaning, the neatness of a story begun, enclosed now in a fog of unknowing, that contains vague threats, the tension leaving the main characters emotionally raw, and they part as we the audience part from any storyline resembling anything like a normal structure.

Antonioni does not move by classical plot lines. His movies are composed of intensities, emotional weights that fall through the characters. When the emotion builds to high pitch, something happens. People that we fall away from disappear out of our lives. Sometimes we look for them. Niccolo winds up the stairs of the building that is the address where Mavis perhaps now resides. They watch each other for a moment: he on the street looking up, she from the lit window looking down; nothing else happens.

Antonioni's movies are like life in this way. We do not know the 'grand plot' of our lives, if there is one at all, but are driven by our sensitivities, emotional entanglements, the intensities of our lives, those we love in the ways that we understand love. We are part of our environments, rich or poor, and while ideas exist, and politics, they do not drive us as strongly as our hearts, our questioning spirit.

While many people find Antonioni's films long, plot-less and perhaps nearly pointless, his movies make sense to me. They end, not with a resolution to a twist-turning, hair-raising story but with an understanding of a moment, an epiphany if you will. In this film, the asteroid that is turned into a spaceship heading towards the sun that Niccolo speaks to a child about is a brilliant ending. Not only a continuing poetic metaphor of the sun and our passion but the 'light' of insight is here. Imagination is highlighted, and the child, who could be his nephew or the son of Nadia, we do not know and it does not matter.

In Identificazione di una donna, Antonioni further develops the theme of the creative artist, the director, who is, here, searching for the identity of woman. It's beautiful. Respectful and adoring of women's sexuality, including bisexuality, the mystique of the woman who is not one, but many.

As with all of Antonioni's films, I found myself adoring the characters in Identificazione di una donna, their lives. Let yourself go, forget expectations, feel the force of the film at its core. We are like this. Undecided, with choices to make every moment of our lives.



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