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Archive for January, 2010

Do want to see what our war is really like??

You may find this PBS Frontline interview of some interest.


“Danfung Dennis, who filmed the opening scene of Obama’s War, is a freelance photojournalist who has covered Afghanistan and Iraq since 2006. He was embedded with Echo Company, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Company, for three weeks in early July 2009 to chronicle the beginning of Operation Strike of the Sword, a U.S.-led offensive in southern Helmand province. He is currently based in London.”

“On July 2nd, 2009, four thousand US Marines of the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade launched a major helicopter assault into a Taliban stronghold in the Helmand River Valley in southern Afghanistan in order to break a military stalemate with the insurgent group.

Independent filmmaker Danfung Dennis was embedded with Echo Company, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Company, as they were dropped 18 km behind enemy lines to seize a key bridge. Within a few hours of landing, fierce fighting erupted and continued for the next three days, during which Lance Corporal Charles Sharp, from Adairsville, Georgia was shot and killed by a Taliban fighter.

After the initial fighting, the Marines searched for the insurgents who had killed Lance Corporal Sharp. Frustration set in as the Marines tried to fight the elusive enemy whose IED’s cut off their supply lines. The Marines’ objective was to secure and protect the population, but the Afghan villagers complained that the fighting has driven them into the desert, and the bombing destroyed their homes. Can the Marines balance their contradictory roles as warriors and statesmen, as they struggle to win the hearts and minds of the Afghan people?

The footage was shot on a custom built rig, using a Canon 5D Mark II, 24-70 f/2.8 L lens, Sennheiser ME-66 and G2 wireless system, Singh-Ray variable ND filter, and Beachtek 2XAs mounted on a Glidecam 2000 HD with custom made aluminum ‘wings.’ ”

Music licensed through Universal Music.

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I happened upon another interesting artist Clarina Bezzola,  she is Swiss born working in New York City.  I found her after following some research of modern art and self portraits.  She is the subject of all her performances, and videos.  She has an extensive website cataloging her work in several forms:  photography, drawing, video, sculpture, installation and performance.

http://www.clarinabezzola.com

“Judgement Day is a parody on our constant urge to criticize, label and judge. It shows a person sending her whole day going around town judging and commenting on everything and everyone she encounters until she finds herself completely isolated and empty.”

I made contact with her and asked if her work was a self portrait and this is a quote from her response:

“Hi Jerry,

Well my work is about life and the struggles of it.  As I can never be anyone but myself this is all coming as my view of it, that’s true. But many people feel very identified with my work and feel it’s about their lives and their struggles.”

Copyright - Clarina Bezzola

Below is an image from “Noise in My Head” series.

“Depiction of an individual who is constantly absorbed in the dialogues with her inner voices and misses the beautiful world around.”

Copyright - Clarina Bezzola

“Through my wearable sculptures I question and redefine the role of the garment. Wrapping the body to reveal instead of conceal. The wearer’s emotional landscape gets exposed and invites to an honest and open dialogue between the wearer and the viewer.”

Copyright - Clarina Bezzola

Focus Hood by Clarina Bezzola

I think performance and sculpture are important tools for the student of photography to consider. Many beginners think that a photographer must only find their subject.  SHE MAKES HER SUBJECT.

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Dress Code is a current exhibition of photography and video at the International Center of Photography.

I was particularily interested in the work of Thorsten Brinkman.  He is a German artist who is a self declared “serial collector”.

A self-described “serial collector,” German artist Thorsten Brinkmann photographs himself in extraordinary costumes that he creates from castoff clothing and household objects salvaged from the street or from flea markets. While the resulting images echo the formal conventions of classical portraiture, the bizarre costumes, invariably masking his face, disrupt our expectations. In fact, the most disconcerting element of these images is Brinkmann’s persistent withholding of the human face, which is replaced by objects ranging from flowerpots to lampshades, purses, or tennis-racket covers. These discordant elements confuse the distinctions between body and object, giving rise to fantastical figures that are at once stately and monstrous. For the Triennial, Brinkman has installed his photographs in a self-designed room composed of found materials—a three-dimensional environment that intentionally blurs the line between sculpture and photography.

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This was shot at a demo at UCM.  We followed the directions described in a great book of modern food styling.

Food Styling for Photographers: A Guide to Creating Your Own Appetizing Art

By Linda Bellingham and Jean Ann Bybee

This ice cream is easy following the detailed instructions in the BOOK.

It is simply powdered sugar and frosting.  I have never looked for these in items before, so I was pleasantly surprised to see several flavors of frosting cheap, as well as a deal on the powdered sugar.

Supplies

  1. 3 small frosting tubs; Strawberry, Chocolate, French Vanilla.
  2. 3 standard issue powdered sugar.
  3. Wood skewers.
  4. Cones

Process

  1. Start with frosting in the processor and pulse a couple time.
  2. Slowly add the powdered sugar and pulse as you go until it gets to a point it is no longer sticky.
  3. Put it in a plastic bag and knead it to a ball.
  4. Use and ice cream scoop inside of the bag to develop the scoop.

We combined the ingredients with a strong Cuisinart food processor.

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