The Camera: Strikes Creativity or Terror?

I’ve heard stories from many different people, mostly among students and fellow acquaintance because this issue really doesn’t get into any sort of  attention on Yahoo’s (really horrific) news or Google, or any of the other places that has news but I don’t read. I just have the question: What is the camera mean to people today?

Now this all starts with an experience at a local mall which holds you Average Joe stores:  Hancock fabrics, Target, REI, Johnny Rockets, Sushi Boat, Pac Sun, Old Navy, Burlington, etc. It’s fairly small compared to other California malls which are crowded and noisy as heck. But let me tell you that we were pretty isolated at one spot next to Johnny Rockets and Sushi Boat and we had been immobile for 2 hours. Never have we ever gotten into any sort of trouble, we’ve gotten a few compliment because we tend to draw and just chit chat (one time this lady came up to us and handed me and my friend 12 dollar gift cards to Johnny Rockets and said ‘Remember that the Lord has a name and it’s Jesus Christ.’), but this time was different. This time I had a camera and I was doing homework. Which brings me to the question, Does the camera nowadays strike; creativity or terror?

Maybe it’s a simple answer to you the reader, but it would appear in the law enforcers have a different ideal or whatever the specifics are in protecting the public. The stories I’ve heard was that you can’t take pictures of a mall on the mall grounds or even from the street (period!). The one I experienced was in the mall (keep in mind immobile for 2 hours) a mall cop walked up to us (like a ghost) and asked that I stop taking pictures of my friend at this small table.
We asked ‘why?’ the mall cop replied ‘ever since 9/11 (don’t remember the rest) the terrorists usually take pictures of the structures.’
Now if I was mobile taking pictures of every last structure flaw then yeah, I probably wouldn’t have a problem but we were immobile. And to be honest do you think that a terrorist would carry around a big clunky camera where the shutter of the camera makes a loud crack? I won’t answer. But cameras are now on every phone imaginable and any normal person says bygones! Quiet, small, sneaky, and here I am showing no effort to hide the fact that I’m taking pictures for a project. The mall cop didn’t care why and really didn’t exert any more than that. Minutes later once I’ve stopped I curiously turn around to see him pacing and staring at us. We left, but after we left I wanted to ask the cop so bad if I was doing anything to invoke terror, the public people sitting down eating their meals, were they scared or having feelings of being terrorized?

 

 

I won’t say that I don’t look like a terrorist because Terror is a state of mind and has no face. I don’t know where the camera is going because of incidences like this, I’m sure, in fact I’m positive I’m not the only one who has been through this. I just want some sort of closure which I know I won’t get, I just don’t enjoy being treated like I’m going to open my jacket and cops will assume I’m packing TNT because of my camera. I also don’t want to be taking a picture sparking my creative genius and there’s the conformity brute who says that I can’t. When I know now that I can!

Is it the camera? Or is it the state of mind of most mall cops and police advocates? Is it just people in public?

“The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is Fear. And the oldest and strongest kind of Fear is of the Unknown.” – H.P. Lovecraft. 

I woulda gone about things differently had I know that I have my rights to take pictures in a mall. Just a lesson learned to know your rights fellow photographers!

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A Shadow in Art

This is Paul. He is a full time student, has a part time job and wants to be a graphic novelist. This is no unattainable goal, yet it’s no easy road.

I would like to tell you from personal experience that being a creator that has no visuals only the written word is really hard to make my work palatable to anyone. There’s multiple reasons too; no one has the patience or the time to read a full length novel, or won’t take my work seriously, or because I’m not credible yet. Whatever the reason be, it’s frustrating and makes it all the more infuriating because writing stories is what my dream is. My friend Paul shares a similar passion only he executes his stories through visuals. The basis of this post is to tell you that you should follow your dream and if there is a struggle with everyday life then don’t forget to jump the hurdle. I would’ve liked to have found a quote to end this paragraph so instead I’ll improvise! You may question yourself whenever you can, at your most beautiful or even at your most degraded but just remember what Ernest Hemingway said; “Courage is grace under pressure.” By the end of it, I’m sure the struggle will be worth it.

Let me just start off by saying that Paul is a very busy man. Trying to meet up with him works like a doctors office, you need to make an appointment to see the doctor. With Paul you have to plan dates ahead and confirm them by showing up.

Paul’s graphic novel that he is currently in pursuit of finishing is called Bananattack. To the right is Banana’s character done with G-pen and copic markers. On the left is a rough sketch of a panel from Bananattack.

Inks, G-pens, erasers and nibs are the tools or materials for Paul to use. He prefers to make his art and comic looking spiffy.

Shuffling through papers and traveling through past mistakes and/or imperfections.

Bob Atomic

I was unable to visit him in his artistic environment, aka his room. He tells me that artists are messy and that his room shows clutter.

Instead we settled for where we usually chat and work on art. He did what he usually does at a public table in the local mall.

FUN FACT: Banana’s have potassium.

Focus.

Paul was in the zone, his zone. He concentrated…

His concentration had him turning the paper as he cross-hatched the chin and inked over the rough sketch of his creation.

He began to ink with his copic markers, and as he got to the skin color; we were stopped and I was asked to stop taking pictures by a mall cop.

So we moved across the street outside on a stone table and benches.

His mojo had been disrupted and he had been going slower. His process was practically killed. When you take it into consideration that at anytime this happens his progress gets dented.

Disruption has no face and could happen at anytime.

But y’ can’t let distress slow you down. Paul kept going.

And this is where Paul works; the Euphrat Museum at De Anza College.

This Friday at De Anza Euphrat Museum, Joseph Rodriguez is holding his first solo art show.

“How Reality Died Today.” You should drop by on Friday or look up the event on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/events/467694986598315/

Of course, do you think it was a walk in the park for him? No, no it wasn’t. He’s been working on his graphic novel for nearly 2 years; spending time building his fan base online, taking time away to go to De Anza College, getting a job which he told me that all the life savings and pay checks were spent getting materials to make Bananattack. Even after all that, I dropped in on him at a convention in downtown San Jose taking place in the convention center in the last weekend of May. There he sold his one shot at his booth; he sold about 30 copies out of 100 he paid to print, losing money and leaving him with nervous social awkward people to gaze and shutter.

Though following this path he has gained a lot of interest on the forum he posts at.

Paul has the highest viewed one shot on the forum. If you don’t believe me: http://forum.onemanga.com/forumdisplay.php?f=157&daysprune=-1&order=desc&sort=views

If there’s anything in your life that you are passionate about pursue that dream and achieve what you thought to be impossible. Just give it time and hard work and it should be worth the struggle, it only makes you strong.

~Stay strong my friends and set your goal to the be the center stage and build around that.

Sites:

Visit Joseph’s Gallery: http://www.facebook.com/events/467694986598315/

Bananattack forum thread: http://forum.onemanga.com/showthread.php?t=101282

Help support Paul and Bananattack: http://www.facebook.com/Bananattack

And Here’s my book’s Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/BelongOfficial

Contemplate and Refrain

Only a drive in the car does everything in the real world pause until you get back. It gives you time to cool off and let out steam. My last post I was absolutely insane and on the brink of rampage, and now I know that there has to be a line in which I draw. I try not to curse and I try not to get upset as easily which has made me a more patient person and a more respectable quiet person as well, but when the straw has been broken I usually need something to help me cope.

Usually I need to take that ride or else I’ll be pounding my hands into powder to be restrung with wire and brass. I’m smarter than that. There’s always some way around with dealing with the catalyst of your anger and I’ll try that with WordPress. The challenge has been accepted and I will be victorious!

We can all get frustrated at times and no amount of soft music or words will save us. Take my word, go out on a drive even if it’s just around the block or on a busy highway at night.

 

Stay positive my colleagues!

I Can Only be Pushed so Far WordPress

This is me trying to figure out this f**king website. I don’t think anything in the entire world had frustrated me this much. Congratulations website, you have done what very few have managed to do, I am angry. You win, I hope your lunch time with Satan is pleasant.

And to think I have a project to publish on here. Which means I’ll have to come back.

Detachment

Detachment (2011) directed by Tony Kaye and written by Carl Lund. Sometimes words can’t really describe something so simple as a movie, or at least I can’t find the words to describe what Detachment really means; to me anyway.

“A substitute teacher who drifts from classroom to classroom finds a connection to the students and teachers during his latest assignment.” – the summary on IMDB, which really doesn’t sum up what the movie really means.

It’s a movie composed of many different variables which revolve around growing up; the struggles, the scars, the negative side to everything that may happen to us. Take it through personal experience, you’ll probably know where I’m coming from. It’s almost a mirror image of the people I’ve seen and the people I know and myself, because we all get frustrated at life, the confusion we feel in our teenage years or even older because we don’t feel any guidance from anyone and we just want to belong. No matter how much we crave the guidance nobody can lend it to us and one of the strongest influences around are the teachers. It’s mostly teachers because parents are different people who as we all know can’t tell you what to do as where teachers show you interests they have (plus the amount of time we have with teachers). There’s a connection if you share common interests and that’s how we attach to them; even if we hate them or don’t care for them, they still leave an impact. Good or bad.

Adrien Brody plays a substitute teacher named Henry Barthes who doesn’t have a lot of time with the students of an under-appreciated school full of angsty teens and faculty who truly care about the future for the students and they won’t listen. He shows apathy and mental stability right away, yet it’s admirable because he can handle the students, disregarding his physical or mental well-being.  He has no goal to make an impact and as the students slowly connect with him the movie shows Henry’s scars and why the viewer should disconnect from him because of his own scars, yet I was drawn in more. They’re almost trying to tell me that he can’t be a hero, a hero has no flaws; but that’s never true. His courage; grace under pressure. It’s the hardest struggle that makes someone more admirable.

Although, I feel a bit like a hypocrite if I said that I didn’t admire any of my teachers in high school; cause I didn’t. They didn’t really give me any chances and gave the chances to people who didn’t really deserve it, which could be viewed as selfishness or normal. But teachers all over my internal-school-map make impacts on me, probably if not definitely shaping how I view certain things now and in the future. For instance, one of the most  influential teachers happened to be a substitute Art teacher my Senior year of high school; she gave me a chance by entering my charcoal pastel falcon (which I had worked so hard on and loved working on) into the District Art show…Did I win anything for it? Nope. But I’m still proud that I was given that opportunity one that will stick like a glue stick. I still question how in that short amount of time she was able to make a larger impact on me than the regular/main Art teacher. Cheers to you Ms. Byrd! (If the spelling is correct.)

One of my college English teacher’s said to the class during one of his lectures; “we’re all broken.” I would say the rest if I could remember the exact words. I’d like for the fullest impact if I ever quote anyone, word for word is the strength, which one day I’ll be able to remember and speak the rest, but for now bear with me. Because we’re socially inept and were raised from a family who were like glass in there days and passed it down. It’s a depressing thought, but it’s positive and reassuring once you’ve taken the journey within yourself to accept the flaws. Some people can’t, and it’s hard. It shows. Just stay with us for a bit longer.

It also shows in the movie as well, and many people who watch it don’t just see a movie that can be rated with stars. This is watching your own journey that you might not have realized you’ve had yet on a giant screen of introspective relation. It’s hard to accept, it truly is and sometimes it’s hard to place the pieces together.

~Until next time!

Oh, almost forgot; here’s the IMDB page on Detachment.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1683526/

Provenance

It’s hard to find the ‘first impression’ words without having to think about them. I’ll do the best I can in trying to divulge my goals and interests.

I’ll talk only for a moment in a direct and straight to the point manner; I have an armada of interests and opinions when it comes to Journalism as a category.

-Photography is almost a new found form of Art for me since apparently I’m good at it. Yet, photography is also one of the easiest form of Art, so I don’t limit myself to just photography. I’ll usually pick up a pencil and paper for the occasional portrait of a friend using just pencil and paper. However, I would like to also say that I also have an interest for the written word as well. Writing is just another way of creating, hence forth I do not want to be called an artist, but a creator.

-While I’m off in my own little world writing and creating, there is another world out there that I tend to ignore for various reasons. I don’t think much about politics and I think the media (being one entity) is just a catalyst for blowing things out of proportion. And yet it is omnipotent, but it is weaker than anything that I’ve seen. The media doesn’t catch what truly matters. Do I have a clear consensus of ‘what truly matters’ is? I’m not sure, but I think it’s something that should invoke strength or courage in the general public; not hate or pretension. Who gives a rats ass about celebrities? They are just people. It’s the image the media produces that makes it seem like it’s such a lost cause.

I believe we are being ruined, and I’m here to do my best at creating the key to unlock our emotions.