Sebastio Slalgado

The Documentary on Sebastiao Salgado shows a documentary photographer as truly a man of the earth.  His work and journey through photography seems to greatly reflect this.  His earlier career and in fact his first big project went in depth with the people of South America. Salgado intimately got to know the people farming, mining and working in all over south america.  He was there with them in their work and in their play.   He captured their toil and struggle their as well as the laughter and joy.

Later on he looked to the nature, animals and environment.   Struggling to capture pictures of some of the last large groups of walruses in the world.  Watching this man wait for hours for a polar bear to leave so that the walrus would return to shore to be photographed.  Then crawling and rolling on the ground in order to not alert the creatures of his presence.  In away he is toiling in the earth much like the people we photographed earlier in his life, however he is now documenting the natural world around as he is a part of it.


Viewing once bonce posterrings me into the mind set of how much music is a part of my life.  I am one of those people that is almost always listening to music.  I gre up in a house hold filled with music my father is a musician when he was not playing there was al
most always some form of music playing.  I have a long list of musical likes ranging from punk rock to folk to traditional Irish music and i really love seeing traditional music performed.  In class I enjoyed the bird songs,

I also have a spot for street musicians / buskers.  My father is one that has a passion for busking, he often takes his guitar to the down town where he lives and just sets up to play.  For him its not a money making venture but an enjoyment of playing and performing for others.

SO i guess in some ways I identify with this movie.  The overall feeling is that music can bring people together.  Words and sounds mix to create some thing greater than the sum of individual parts that speaks to us. Music can soothe the soul, make us cry or even rally us to war.  Music is used in celebration and morning.

It interests me that all cultures that I can think of have developed music, songs and instruments of their own. If there is one life blood connecting us all it must be music.  Why else would music be created all over the world.  Sure it may be regional, related to just a small tribe that pounds on one certain drum but there is a further link to humanity in that beat.

Cycle Day 14

I am still on the fence on how often i should shoot these images.  Many times through out the last week I have looked at the terrarium and thought maybe today is the day.  I held out for the full week to show the drastic changes overall. For this set i slightly changed the camera angle in order to show the level of decomposition in the Compost.  I found that shooting from the slightly above angle did not show the degree of change that actually happened.

To this point I still have added nothing to Growing only opening the top to allow for some fresh air in.  Compost was turned after the photo in order to not disturb the level of change.

Below are the 14 days collected together

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Tides: Moonlight Beach, Encinitas, Ca 20 September 2015 8 to 9am

Tides: Moonlight Beach, Encinitas, Ca 20 September 2015 8 to 9am

The Ocean is a powerful force, it can calm the soul, center the mind, cleanse the turmoil.  People listen to sounds of the ocean to calm them selves, others go to dip their toes and plant themselves back on the ground.  Waves  touch bare skin and pulll away stress, washing it out of us as though it was all we needed to be bathed in the earth its self.

I have always found this to be true.  I love barely 20 miles from the ocean and do not make it there nearly often enough.  I find the sounds nd the views simply recenter me in times of stress.  The knowledge of all enternity is encompassed in the rhythm of the tide.

So in order to keep up my own mental well being and centering I have decided to make a project out of it, exploring the value of going to the edge of land on a regular basis.  The plan is to make many photographs on each trip and display them in grid formats.  These images are not perfect, more so they are and idea.  They track the process of a meditative journey.  Some are tack sharp as the mind maybe others flow as thoughts come and go.

Cycle Day 7, Amazing Changes in the First Week

I have been monitoring the terrariums daily, watching for changes in the environments.  I tried to make some decisions on how i was going to forward with this, how often was i going to photograph them, in order to show change.  I decided weekly at the beginning of the project, but as i monitor daily I may adjust the schedule if something exciting happens and choose to photograph at a different time.

So the compost was significantly less volume in one week, and I already have some significant growth of the seeds.  I have not needed to water the plants at all the soil is still plenty moist as well as the compost.  This is very exciting and seems to be progressing nicely.

I realized in my last post I did not describe what was in the jars.

Compost Jar (from bottom up)- rocks, activated charcoal, organic moss, organic soil, orange peal (fresh and dried), egg shells, tea bags, coffee grounds, yard waste green and dried.

Growth Jar (from bottom up)- rocks, activated charcoal, moss, organic soil,  basil seeds, purple basil seeds, chive seeds

The first layer of rocks, activated charcoal, moss, provide for drainage and filtering of the water that is in the environment.

The only thing I have done to these since the beginning is to mix the compost before photographing.  After researching compost in order to achieve best results you should turn the pile.

Food Inc.

foodincI do not always trust documentaries even those that i agree with, “Food Inc.” however, brings up some good points in out system.  Why is it cheaper to feed a family at McDonalds than it is to make your own food.  I honestly do not understand why.  Granted it is affordable for me to feed myself from the grocery store one meal at a time.  but i can understand where it would get difficult feeding a family of 3 or 4 by doing this.

Why is it that food that is less processed, with fewer hands touching it more expensive than buying ground beef made up of 100 cows.  I do not know that I know the answers to this.  But our system of farming and growing has created this.  In all honesty I think our diets of animal is meeting its end of sustainability.  To me beed and pork seem like they should be occasional treats not staples or our diet, something we splurge for on rare occasions.  We are ignoring things that could be sustainable due to our thoughts of what food is.

The more I look into our farming the way we grow food the disparaging it becomes. The mass growing of crops like corn is ruining the once fertile lands of the Americas.  Corns ability to deplete the soil of nutrients is unrivaled yet we grow it with recless abandon.  And when the soil can no longer support life we dump toxic chemical compounds into to make it grow again.  Better would be to rotate crops alternating years, and rather than dumping toxic chemicals into the earth to provide higher yields we could begin to compost the kitchen and yard waist of america to make new fertile soil, rather than dumping it mixed with other garbage into a landfill,

Cellar 3

Today I visited cellar 3 in Poway, Ca. Cellar 3 is Green Flash Brewings barrel aging location, concentrating on aging based on Brettanomyces fermentation the created this location far from the actual brewery.

In this location they have taken the standard green flash beers, and referment them to create something new. Concentrating the on the flavor Brettanomyces adds beers anemic Clint towards sours many for these beers are over 6 months old and truly delicious.

The Flanders Rd sour was my top of the day. I like sour beers on occasion and this one was a true star. Fragrant and sour but no overtly so.

Cycle Day 1

Life exists in cycles from decay to growth and back again.  This is a concept that I find intriguing and decided to explore in small controlled environments. In one terrarium is kitchen waste and soil, in the other is fresh organic soil and seeds planted.  Over the next several weeks I am going to be documenting the changes of the micro environments.

This project is exploring many things life and death, entropy and organization, impermanence of life.  The concept of life and death, growth and decay are ideas that fascinate me.  Composting jar decays and starts to become the carbon and nutrients that make up the waste in it the Growing jar will rise, the plants will grow and become stranger.  These will be displayed together to show the cycle as at happens.  Showing that even as something dies and decays another thing grows healthy and strong.  Autumn leaves fall onto the ground through the wet months of winter if left where they are the begin to matt down creating a protective blanket over new seeds on the ground.  The leaves decay and become part of the soil then begin to feed the new life that grows beneath, come spring new life climbs through the soil, and new flowers bloom.

Not to mention exploring environmental issues as well.  Our current farming system in The united states is no longer sustainable, the Americas are some of the most fertile lands in the world and we are poisoning it by chemical fertilizers and poisons, by not correctly rotating crops we destroy soil, To a point it will no longer grow anything.  We throw into the garbage things that can be used to create fertile soil.  My whole idea is to start a project that becomes sustainable in its own microenvironment.  As my compost become soil i can use that new soil to build new environments.  Anna Mia Davidson was a large inspiration for this project, her work with sustainability through her project “The Farm” really moved me.  The length of her works is one of the things that wanted me to devote so much time to this project.  Michael wolf was the inspiration for the grid display.

Maya Lin

nam mem2I wanted to look at Maya Lins work on this post.  We can talk in depth and at length at the struggle and fight against racism, sexism, bigotry, and peoples inability to accept a new idea of memorial, to get the Vietnam Memorial built is a a great tale. and an amazing one that deserves to be told.  I do not really want to talk about that right now, this is not a blog about american history, politics, or social studies.  This blog is intended to look into art, look on my feelings of art and what it means and the feeling i get from the work.  A couple of notes though, i do find that in modern times it is ridiculous that we are still talking about some of the same issues in this country.  Also it is interesting to note the Lin has changed her perspective on who she is in this video she talks of herself as an architect but wavers on being an artist.  In the Art 21 feature we viewed in class that is more recent she has flipped her stance and now considers her self a visual artists at heart and an architect second.

Lin created the Vietnam Memorial from a perspective of understanding what memorial where to us as humans.  Yhey are
reminders but also celebrations, people have marked the places of the deceased for thousands of years.  I feel vietnam memorial 1Maya wanted to create an everlasting work that would intimatly include the viewer, make the per viewer as much a part of the work as the work itself. First of all listing the names chronologically creates individuality in the men and women that perished in the war.  Chronologically the person is not listed amongst the others with similar last names that are common but generally on his/her own, standing with their fallen brothers and sisters, but individually as well.  Secondly the visitor friend or family member looking for a loved one must locate where that person is located on the wall.

This may seem like an inconvenience to the visitor but it creates a personalized experience, a kin to finding your loved ones grave in a grave yard, you must locate the location first, but it also puts you in as part of the memorial.  It puts the viewer in as part of the peoples lives.  The visitor must first locate the person, then physically walk down into the memorial. To walk a path lined by the reflective surface of the wall reflects the person and the landscape back at them, almost giving the appearance of walking through a mystic faded land scape.  The people on the wall were all parts of our lives in some way, and you were part of their lives.  Your reflection peering back at you from the reflection includes you in their life and memorial.  A memorial is meaningless with no one to remember, the person visiting the memorial is why the memorial has meaning.

nam mem sketch

This work is a was a new thought of memorial though.  There is no heroic imagery, no statue in patriotic stance that represents the pride of America.  Only the a peaceful stark standing reminder of those that lost their lives to our country, set into the heart of the capital, not on the surface.  In this there is symbology too, these men are part of our soil and roots that held up the country.  This new thought of memorial makes it more about the people that were in the war and the families that lost there loved ones, than about national pride and propaganda.  I find this a more fitting memorial than one that would continue the rhetoric of “God Bless America” and for some reason we are better than every one else thinking that had previously infected much of the memorials set for other fallen soldiers.  This memorial was truly about the soldiers, the men and women that died in the conflict.