Tag Archives: digital media

A Tame Goose Never Goes Wild

by Wal Keck

A ragtag bunch of statements that between them might be relevant:


John Renshaw taught me (and others):

“You can tame a wild goose, but a tame goose never goes wild,” he said. “Don’t be in too much of a hurry to bring it under control.”

He looked at work and said “You were coming out from under the table and ‘oooooh,’ you’ve banged your head”

and walked away.

Another time he looked and said “You’re skating, lad. Skating. Oo – Thin ice”

and walked away.

All was metaphor and all, eventually, sank home.

He took some of the students, who had spent the previous two weeks in the printmaking department, outside to the yard and had them build a large framework, to which they were instructed to attach their previous two weeks’ work. He then set about setting fire to the frame, instructing the students to grab a piece of A1 paper and to start to draw as their efforts went up in smoke. Most students grabbed their work off the frame and ran. Those that grabbed their paper and drew, went on.

He talked in terms of mark making. He talked of lines. He talked of it all being about space. He packed us off to look at Velázquez.

He taught us to avoid being precious, to be prepared to overwork a picture to derive more from it. The next picture was the thing.

At the end of the year he brought in some of his own work. I was surprised, given the sort of things he encouraged us to do, at how small the paintings were. I said, “I thought they would be big paintings?” He said “They are big paintings, lad, they are big paintings.”


I look at the work I produce 33 years later and wonder where, in all of the excessively tight control that an I-Pad gives me, lie the ripples of those lessons?


My involvement with the process and its impact upon me are still what interest me most.

Working digitally, it is always possible to retreat in time and to follow a different seam.

I have always in my mind, somewhere, the thought that this is all leading up to “The Picture,” the image that, for me, stands head and shoulders above all others. The product of all of it. The outcome. The result. I hope that I never produce “The Picture” as it ends there.


I’ve always been more thrilled by potential than realization.


The images are subservient to the act of looking.

I cannot look at an image as well as I look through the process of cutting, reassembling and/or erasing that image.

I recall J.G. Ballard saying that he did not want his children to read his books as it was too intimate a relationship for them to have with him.

When I am erasing areas of old paintings it can also feel too intimate. I enter a room in the National Gallery and seeing one of ‘my’ renaissance paintings across the room, blush slightly with the feeling that others know.


At full tilt I feel that were I to lay upon the cold wet morning grass then I would sizzle.

The loss of momentum brings the leaden drag of gravity.


The images are diary entries that trigger a recollection of an experience and/or a sequence of thoughts.

Sometimes they are markers, or signposts, of another seam of ideas, sometimes of dead ends.


Like a hunter, I track images to use. I gather them together and then mine them until I have extracted all that I can currently use.

The potential of a newly struck seam can take years off.

Inevitably the slagheaps pile up around me, making it difficult to find anything and to choose only 15 images.

N.B. No canaries were harmed in the production of the work.

It is all just the act of looking and of being engaged with a process.

It is all process and the impact of the process on the act of looking.

I am not focussed on the images. They interest me, but not as much as the process and the act of looking that they involve.

I see my work as debris, as fall out from my involvement with a process. The pictures were always subservient to the process and the act of looking.














wal-keck-self-portraitArtist: Wal Keck

See more of his work on Instagram: wal616.






Dark Side on the Inside

by David Feingold

jeanette by David Feingold
















david-feingold-1Artist: David Feingold

Over four decades ago, at 16 years of age, I was hit by a car as a pedestrian. It was a hit-and-run which had significant neurological and emotional consequences. A closed head injury resulted in temporal lobe epilepsy and bipolar disorder. 

My artwork consists of imagery that connects with thoughts and feelings born out of my lived experience with bipolar disorder. In addition to the classic difficulties associated with a mood disorder—major depression and mania, and personal, familial and social disruption, an additional level of emotional pain lies beneath the surface.  I refer to this pain as the “Impaired Self,” as described in my 2013 Disability Studies doctoral dissertation.

The Impaired Self is that part of a psychiatric illness that we must deal with over and above our usual mental illness-related challenges on a daily basis. Specifically, I am referring to society’s destructive contribution of stigma, harsh judgement, discrimination, rejection, fear, avoidance, and alienation.

My images are a chronological, visual shorthand of the struggle in living with mental illness as opposed to art that is created for strictly for beauty and aesthetic appreciation. These largely dark and looming images do not need artist interpretations or to be understood or justified. Rather, they benefit from the observer having an open mind and interest in experiencing vicariously, what I and others like myself experience at a visceral level.

For the observer, these images can facilitate an expanded awareness as to the pain associated with the bipolar experience, in addition to generating greater acceptance, understanding and empathy.

Although my artwork is digital, I use rudimentary graphic editing programs to create a painterly quality that has taken me a number of years to perfect. Completion of an image can take anywhere from hours to days, to weeks, often going through numerous transformations, modifications and refinements.  Quite often, the final image can bear little or no resemblance to  the beginning stages.




…and other Green Collar Dilemmas

by PK Donson









Hung the Moon

Hung the Moon



Musical Swamp

Musical Swamp





Rhino in the House

Rhino in the House

Sleeping Elk

Sleeping Elk

Super Cow

Super Cow

Swan Walk

Swan Walk






PK's AvatarPK Donson (1954 Anniston, AL)

PK’s work investigates the pixels by exaggerating certain formal aspects inherent to our contemporary society. She creates intense personal moments masterly created by means of rules and omissions, acceptance and refusal, luring the viewer round and round.

PK’s whimsical photos directly respond to the surrounding environment and she uses everyday experiences as a starting point. Often these framed instances would go unnoticed in their original context.

By applying abstraction, she approaches a wide scale of subjects in a multi-layered way and likes to involve the viewer in a way that is sometimes emotional. The results are deconstructed to the extent the meaning is shifted and possible interpretation becomes multifaceted.

Her works are saturated with obviousness, mental inertia, cliches and bad jokes. They question the coerciveness that is derived from the more profound meaning and the superficial aesthetic
appearance of an image, with a conceptual approach. PK makes works that can be seen as self-portraits. Sometimes they appear idiosyncratic and quirky. At other times, they seem typical by-products of American super abundance and marketing.

PK currently lives and works in Davidson, NC.

Facebook: PK Donson
Google Plus: +PK Donson
Website: www.pksphotos.com
Email: pdonson@gmail.com



The Art of Emili Yi: Mind, Material, Manifestation

by Emili Yi

Watercolor Emotion Series

The Watercolor Emotion Series aims to explore the relationship between emotion, color, shape, and context through water media.

“Optimistic Thought,” Watercolor, 30cm X 40cm

“Emotional Man,” Watercolor, 30cm X 40 cm

Mind Manifestation Series

The Mind Manifestation Series comprises a collection of paintings that were started and completed during the summer of 2013 using watercolors and charcoal. The inspiration for this body of work stems from the Emili’s exploration of the relationship between mind, image and actionable experience within material existence.

“Mind,” Watercolor and Charcoal, 30cm X 30cm

“Mind 2,” Watercolor and Charcoal, 30cm X 30cm

“Mind 3,” Watercolor and Charcoal, 30cm X 30cm

Expressive Symbolism

“Caged Dancer,” Digital Media (Acrylic), 15″ X 15″

“Caged Dancer” uses symbolism, a diverse color palette and fluid line stroke to express a story of irony and confined fancy. It marks Emili’s first work since emigrating to the United States and in digital media.

“Red,” Digital Media (Acrylic), 15″ X 15″

“Red” is an exploration of emotion expressed in symbol and color to represent context, mood and atmosphere.

Visual Syntax Series

“Visual Syntax,” Digital Media (Acrylic), 15″ X 15″

“Visual Syntax” is an abstract painting which contemplates the evolving function of human visual syntactic processes during a time of emerging information and media technologies.

“Escapade,” Digital Media (Acrylic), 15″ X 15″

“Escapade” continues to explore human mindscape in a time of transition. The image presents a visual landscape rich in organic shapes and colors inspired from nature. The aim of the image is to present an abstract concept based created from shapes inspired from nature and contrasts from that of mathematical abstraction and straight line.

Watercolor Bodies

These images work to present the human figure through color and the virtues of watercolor media.

“Watercolor Body 1,” Watercolor, 30cm X 30 cm

“Watercolor Body 2,” Watercolor, 30cm X 30 cm

“Watercolor Body 3,” Watercolor, 30cm X 30cm

Homage to Picasso

“Bullfight,” Watercolor, 160cm X 110 cm

“Bullfight” was created to pay homage to Pablo Picasso during Emili’s Junior year in art school.

Photo Realism

“Woman,” Digital Media (Acrylic), 32″ X 24″

“Woman” demonstrates Emili’s skill sets in Portraiture work.

“Leopard,” Digital Media (Acrylic), 24″ X 16″

“Leopard” demonstrates Emili’s skill-sets in Portraiture work and photo-realism.

Emili Yi was born in Liaoning, China February 24, 1987. At an early age Emili displayed artistic ability and was enrolled into a private art school by her parents at the age of six. In 2001, Emili trained under the tutelage of Professor Song Wei who is a practicing professor at the Lu Xun Academy of Fine Arts and widely recognized as a wood-block painting and print master. In 2007, Emili studied at the Yi Yuan Private Art Academy and in 2008 enrolled into the Northeast University Fine Arts Program. She graduated in 2011 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree Major in Oil Painting. Emili moved to the United States on July 4, 2013 and currently lives in Walnut Creek, CA.

Website: http://www.emiliyi.com/

Twitter: @emili_yi

Facebook: Emili Yi


by Peter Ciccariello


Works in Textual artifacts are created using an array of 2-D and 3-D software programs and take their inspiration from common methods of archeological excavation. Just as ancient artifacts are deciphered through the recovery and examination of the remains of a culture, environmental data and detritus that they leave behind, these image artifacts represent the remains of poems and writings that have been eroded and battered in a digital process. That process attempts to dissect and deconstruct a text and then reconstruct that text as an evolutionary image. The final visual is created by digitally mapping the image with a copy of itself, in a sense, forming an archeological topography of the material essence of the image. This visual topography, created from the value scale of the image, is excavated from within the process revealing the remains, historical marks and gestures from the original source data. In this way, these images become metaphors of themselves, just as the incidental evidence of our human ancestors provide a reflective metaphor for our own lives.


This art is defined by process, a hybrid of the essential elements of painting, photography and writing. The digital matrix that is created is at the core of this work, provides a new form of plate printing, a virtual digital matrix that functions as the film negative in photography or the copper plate that is the basis of etching, intaglio and engraving printmaking processes. This digital image matrix now provides the possibility to be output from 3-D printers and realized as free-standing sculptures or in this case, sculptured wall hangings. This unprecedented freedom of instantiation provides the artist with the ability to output multiple types of art realized from the same original matrix.

In this sense, every instantiation of the matrix is an original with the unique aura of the artists’ conception. In an age of ever more sophisticated reproductive technologies the image matrix becomes the postmodern link to the artist’s hand. The abstract schema that becomes an imprint is akin to personal writing, instantiated as a new private language – part sign, part symbol and part code, this image surface becomes a non-navigational road map of fragmented and disassembled narratives, disruptive and de-centering yet at the same time oddly imbued with an inner, familiar, and abstracted order.

sister queens

sister queens

tiny disconnects

tiny disconnects

map of the kindness of strangers

map of the kindness of strangers

body as locus

body as locus

raining tache

raining tache

blue scrawl poem

blue scrawl poem

 homage to brancusi

homage to brancusi

after tender buttons redux

after tender buttons redux

poem totally destroyed

poem totally destroyed

soft poem after ryder

soft poem after ryder





Peter Ciccariello

Peter Ciccariello finds his inspiration in the fields and forests of Northeastern Connecticut.

His work explores the fine lines between image and text, and is in constant inquiry about what is and what is not poetry.

Ciccariello’s work has appeared in print & online, in amongst other places, Poetry Magazine, Fogged Clarity, Hesa inprint, Leonardo On-Line, National Gallery of Writing, and also appeared  in the 2013 issue of MAINTENANT 7, A Journal of Contemporary Dada Writing and Art.

New work gallery – http://invisiblenotes.blogspot.com/
Poetry and writing – http://poemsfromprovidence.blogspot.com/

You can find my art and writing updates on Twitter
https://twitter.com/ciccariello On Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/peter.ciccariello

Journey of A: A Graphic Exploration of Self/Other

by Melissa D. Johnston



refuse from the machine

refuse from the machine

fragmentation and compression

fragmentation and compression

self-other arithmetic

self-other arithmetic

identity in time

identity in time

Fields: Haywire (What is Encounter?)

by Melissa D. Johnston

What is encounter?

Necks, Scars, Cancer, and Pink Worms

by Melissa D. Johnston

“It’s a giant, juicy, pink worm tied down by Lilliputians.” This was the answer to my friends, post-surgery, of what my scar looked like. To my parents it appeared that my neck had been clotheslined—not metaphorically, but with actual clothesline wire. This belief persisted long after the stitches came out and persists to this day, echoed in the surreptitious glances of strangers who may or may not wonder if I’d once had a particularly unfortunate day playing Red Rover.

In reality, the pink worm was born as the result of a partial thyroidectomy, a procedure in which a surgeon and his team removed part of my thyroid through a 2 ½ inch horizontal incision in order to whisk away a microcarcinoma (a nice, mellifluous word for a small thyroid cancer) and banish it, after much study, into the biohazard waste basket.

And so they did, and now my worm has advanced to middle-aged skin at the height of a dry winter, where moisture must regularly be applied to keep that plump, pink, youthful appearance. The rumor is that he’ll disintegrate to a ripe, flat old age and then into a grave marked by a bright, thin, barely-there line—where I’ll have to be the one to point him out if I want others to make his post mortem acquaintance. That’s the story according to my surgeon, anyway.

I still have a special fondness for his preteen years, though. The awkward stage where he still struggled with wire braces, the stitches that had to set while he lay inflamed but protected by daily swabs of hydrogen peroxide and generous amounts of petroleum jelly. A time when I made my first public appearance after surgery and couldn’t cover his raw body with a scarf because it was still too sensitive—no small deal since I’d known others with thyroidectomies who’d been asked, in all seriousness, “Did you try to slit your throat?” I didn’t fancy appearing extremely qualified as a candidate for Remedial Suicide Methods 101.

Most folks in the southern U.S. are polite. If they did think I qualified for Remedial Methods, I never knew it. That first day out, in fact, I got plenty of furtive glances, but only one direct stare, from a man whose wife tapped his arm and said, “Honey, Honey—Look!” When I turned my head, she immediately averted her eyes but her husband continued to stare until I wondered whether I’d lost a standoff when I looked away.

One person that day hadn’t seemed to notice at all. She took my order at one of my favorite local New York style delis and looked directly into my eyes, as she seemed to do with all the customers. It was only when I was getting my soft drink that she came over and said, “Do you mind my asking—what surgery did you just have?”

“I had a thyroidectomy.”

“What was it for?”

“I had thyroid cancer.”

“Oh.” She looked down and paused for a second. “I could tell it was fresh…” She finally looked back up and into my eyes. “My son was just diagnosed with leukemia.”

We talked for the next several minutes about her son, cancer, and how crazy life can be with kids. We talked about what we both had been through in the past couple of months and how the cancer diagnoses had affected our families. I walked out of the shop feeling support from someone who one hour before had been a total stranger. I hope she felt the same.

That conversation changed how I viewed my scar. These two digital pieces, which are chronicles of my wrestling with what thyroid cancer means for me, feature my preteen worm in all his pinked, stitched glory.

** 11/19/12  Update:  Alas, my worm never made it to old age. He was whipped out mid-life during a second surgery, where the surgeons, due to finding cancer in my lymph nodes, needed to complete the thyroidectomy and perform a central compartment neck dissection.  New skin puckers where he’d  been, forming glued bumpy borders I’ve yet to explore…**

**7/27/14 Update: My worm rode the wheel of life one more time. As much as he loves me and I him, we both hope it’s his last incarnation. After a third surgery and radiation, I’m hoping to get the all-clear (and it looks good!) to be able to say that I’m a one-year cancer survivor. I’ll know in a few weeks….

Dive I: The Journey Within

Dive II: The Journey Expands

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