Posted on December 27, 2018
Here is a wonderful way to get your child reading and writing. I’ve used this with my own children and had a lot of fun together. We created a diary ‘A Day In The Life Of….’ This is how we did it.
1. Pick a day when you know that you will have a lot of time together. Get your camera (digital is better) and your notepad ready. Have some activities planned for that day.
2. As soon as your child wakes up start taking photographs! You can take some at that special, quiet time before they wake up. I’m assuming you will be awake before your child – not often the case with young children who are wide awake as soon as the sun shines.
3. Take photos all day long. Let your child take pictures too. Make notes of what you have done throughout the day. Ask your child to make notes too. I know this seems obvious but by the time you’ve got to the end of the day you may have forgotten exactly what your child had for lunch.
4. Have special activities such as baking, dressing up, painting etc. Try to fit some exciting events into your day. Also, include the more mundane ones like brushing teeth etc. Don’t forget to take one of that special, quiet time when your child goes to sleep.
5. The day after, or whenever you have time, print the photos out. Let your child stick them onto plain pieces of paper. They can have fun working out the order in which they go – this is when your notes come in handy. Underneath each photo ask your child to describe what’s happening and to write it down. Depending on their age, they might need help with writing.
6. Make a book out of these pages. Give it a proper feel by providing a book cover and title. You can even put a blurb on the back page.
When I did this with my eldest daughter we created a book that became a treasured item. She showed it to everyone who came to the house. She even took it to school for show and tell. Even though she’s nearly 16 she still loves this book. Of course, it makes me go teary eyed with emotion every time I see it.
I hope you enjoy this activity. It could become a regular occurrence in your child’s life. The older they get the more complex their photo diaries can become.
Posted on December 12, 2018
Pop art in its beginning freeze-framed what consumers of popular culture arts experienced into iconic visual abstractions. With the advent of the techno age, visual information circulates in such quantities, so rapidly and exponentially, that to comprehend a fraction of it all becomes a kind of production process in itself. The recording of history and how it’s interpreted has forever changed. The exposure to mass media and consumer advertising has opened up a brave new world of imagery saturation, with a tech savvy generation only too aware yet receptive to the processes of imagery marketing; including the cautious acknowledgment of the digital photo manipulation that readily occurs to such images, ranging from the air brushing of features to outright attempts at fraud.
The use of digital media has moved from the role of recording and documenting a popular culture of the time, to one now that creates its own culture(s), in ever quickening flashes that morph in and out of time often in unison with the latest fad television series or movie franchise.
The ‘spinning pop’ project as popular culture arts, is supported through the maintenance of logs, diaries, and various volumes of collected documentary materials. These documents comprise five components through which the nature of my practice is explored. I have adopted a visual approach to the traditional ‘artist’s journal’, with an extensive series of visual, written, and collected documents that have recorded the works in process. The five documentary components of this project comprise Collections (volumes of text based source materials); Diaries of digital daily images and collages printed onto copy paper; Work in progress logs (volumes of notes and photographs of the daily work practices); Daily postings to the social networks of the completed works; and including the Digital video compilation diaries.
While my work is influenced by Rene Magritte’s great sense of mystery in his juxtaposition of what appears to be unrelated images, I seek a less literal representation of the images created. His intent is to build an ambiguity into the visual language, an intention to engage the viewer on several levels. Generally my painted work is in a pixelated style, and while they are influenced by Georges Seurat’s intent for the viewer’s eye to blend the colours, they are not developed through the Pointillism technique. The digital work varies in its use of mediums and presentation, often produced with archival inks-on-cottonrag paper.
Unsurprisingly, we as a collective of artists examine every facet of life from a popular culture arts perspective, utilizing all available resource, materials and mediums to depict our interpretation of the world about us. The use of digital photo manipulation, and the creation of random imagery is just not surprising, nor outside the ‘norm’ of our brave new world. Photography has for many decades had to combat the accusation of ‘But is it Art?’, and thus as technology develops at such an astonishing pace, photographic manipulation is the medium at the proverbial ‘coal face’ or cutting edge, at which you would expect to find artists operating.