Tomorrow, I’m going to Friday’s at Five, a digital jazz concert. I’ll stay right here in my room.
I love to go to jazz concerts with my son. Before the lights are turned down low, we order a glass of wine and settle down for the show. I listen for a bit then I start sketching – eye to hand to paper. It’s dark during the concert so it’s always a surprise to see how the sketches turned out. My subject matter won’t be live performers. I’m looking forward to seeing what I’ll produce!
Check out. sfjazz.org. New videos will be posted on YouTube every Tuesday and there is an interesting selection of playlists to listen to on Spotify.
Probably no one will notice that I’ve been put under house arrest. I’m not Lindsay Lohan or Aung San Suu Kyi. All I want to do is go to the studio and paint, hang out somewhere and draw or take some photographs, even try writing a poem. My studio is neater than my room at home. There are three paintings at the studio waiting for me to complete. But, here at home there are bills to be paid, forms to be filled, magazines to be read or to be thrown away and piles of papers, books and ‘stuff’ waiting to be put someplace. We’ve moved a bookcase into my room. It’s empty. Books are in bags, piled on the floor. Papers are stacked in the bathtub. There is a tower of art that is about to topple. A soft white rabbit ready to pop out of a soft black top hat, sits by my computer. Legacy by Linda Spence is open on my desk.
Michael Ondaatje’s book, Coming Through Slaughter is on top of a pile of books somewhere in this room. Ondaatje wrote about Buddy Bolden a New Orleans cornet player in the early 1900’s. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6fezzxFjcf This book is my all time favorite. It’s as if you are reading a poem, or going in and out of jazz improvisation or wandering through an abstract painting. Today and until I finish this room, time on all technical devices shall be limited (after I finish this post.) Permission is granted to go out to buy food or get some exercise. Maybe I’ll listen to some jazz while I get this place organized.
Slow Art relates to creating art in a slow way. This practice is about being mindful of detail, valuing the history inherent in re-usable materials, putting time into creating small items. The practice encourages the maker to be naturally meditative as they create.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slow_Movement
During the celebration of Chinese New Year, I went to the Street Fair on Grant Avenue San Francisco. The high energy crowd was not conducive for making a quiet slow drawing. Instead I took out my iphone set my hipstamatic app on random and clicked away. By shaking the camera the appplication changes the lens, flash, and film. After clicking away until the battery was used up, which didn’t take any time at all, the above image turned out to be my favorite shot of the day. Lens: John S Film: Kodadot XGrizzled Flash: Cherry Shine
Just think of the changes this man has seen in his lifetime.
We were all caught up in the spell of the beautiful new building, the music, and the performers. The night was a special one, but then, after playing together, McCoy Tyner and Bobby Hutcherson started talking to each other about how they had played together off and on for about 50 years. One would say, I’d forget and you would pick me up then the other one would say I’d forget and you would pick me up – lots of laugher and reminiscing Earlier in the evening, problems of the world had come up like race, politics and hatred. These two guys said, hey, let’s just be happy! With that said, they gave each other big hugs while they received a standing ovation.
I felt like I was in Westminster Abbey in London when I was looking around the small apse of the cathedral where we were sitting. The dark wood carved walls were the backdrop for the men and women I was drawing. The Cathedral was full. Branford Marsalis, walked out, said a few words in that wonderful voice of his and the lights dimmed. Except for applause the audience was absolutely still and quiet while they listened to the sounds of his saxophone fill the space around them.