This image might seem like a fantasy created in Photoshop, but I captured this scene with my Canon A550, pretty much as it appears.
For reasons I can’t explain, I never got around to adjusting the camera’s built-in calendar, so the date recorded in the image file’s metadata is an improbable January 1, 1980. The probability of that being the correct date is very low, considering that the A550 wasn’t introduced until 2007. Continue reading
This tree made me uneasy when I first saw it. It’s huge. At its base, my arms barely make it halfway around. An informed estimate of its height puts it a more that eighty feet tall.
Your message in on its way.
Carry on with whatever you were doing. Once my fully robotic staff has read your message and added their well intentioned comments to the margins, it will be rolled up and served to me in a copper samovar along with a warm biscuit. I’ll get back to you.
I’ll be able keep at it for a while longer thanks to you.
The Back Room
Is Not the Gift Shop…
The Gift Shop is for fungible goods- T-Shirts, posters, mugs and the like.
The Back Room, however, is for special stuff.
Occasionally, I offer one of the original pieces featured on this website for sale, or I may choose to sell an item had been the subject of of a photographic study. Signed, limited edition series of photographs will also be made available here occasionally- as opposed the very nice mass produced offerings in the Gift Shop.
Like everyone does sometimes, I have regular stuff for sale, This is where you’ll find it.
Who knows, something from my Food Consignment venture may even show up here, Stay tuned.
In any case, please note that there will not be any ‘Buy Now’ or ‘Add to Cart’ buttons associated with the items in the ‘Back Room’ pages. I you’re interested, please contact me via the link at the bottom of any page. Ask any questions you have, and if you like, I’ll work out a custom shipping cost based on your location and send you a one time Paypal invoice which you can review before making your purchase.
Specials Currently Offered:
If you’d like to help keep this operation operating, this is the place.
All donations, regardless of the amount, will be received with a mixture of solemn respect for your good judgement and generous nature, and giddy celebration at being reminded that the world is indeed a friendly place.
This is a simple, secure process handled by Paypal. No information is collected, no awkward questions are asked, and no further commitment is required. Just a warm glow of civic pride.
I can’t honestly say that I always have a preconceived idea of what I’m about to make when I begin a project. In fact, I enjoy that the most. All too often, what can be imagined doesn’t translate well into the language of reality. Other times, an idea is simply incompatible with reality, and it can be a sad moment when that becomes apparent.
2005, Painted pine 10″x22″
A professor friend asked me to come up with an illustration for her new book. After a little discussion and research, we settled on the trickster figure Kokopelli. I’m not an expert when it comes to Native American lore. I approached this simply as a illustration project, although I did try to find a border motif whose origins are arguably consistent with the central figure. Continue reading
The first digital camera I ever used was a Barbie Cam, around 1998 or so. It came with a Barbie Photo Design game, and had a resolution of 160×120 pixels, barely enough for a recognizable thumbnail. Prints were marginally acceptable at 3×4″. Still, it was fun for the kids (and me) to make greeting cards and the like. Continue reading
Over the years, I’ve accumulated a sort of scrap heap of images. Some were the product of whimsy; doodles for their own sake. A few were created for website customers yet remain my property to use or repurpose. Some have a story while some remain a mystery, even to me.
This guitar was handmade by some guy I met in a field. I bought it from him right then and there. Rash purchases are often followed by remorse, and this case was no exception.
This piece is built around my first welding helmet. I retired the helmet long ago, but never got rid of it. It hung on one wall or another for twenty years or more, silently watching as I went about my life.
Then one day, surfacing from deep and distant thoughts, I found myself staring at it, and this is what I found looking looking back at me.
I didn’t recognize him immediately, but once the mask was complete, I realized I’d captured the image of the Divine Welder. Continue reading
I first heard the expression ‘the old future’ when my daughter was about 14 years old. We were driving, and as we approached an intersection, we were presented with a splendid view of a nice old Airstream trailer cruising by. “Isn’t that a cool thing?” I said. “Yeah,” she agreed, “It looks like the old future.” Continue reading
I didn’t actually have any aspirations to become an actual private investigator. This started as an idle doodle on a napkin about the same time I took delivery of my new graphics tablet. A little while later, I had this swell logo, a two eyed eye, and no real purpose for its existence. Unless, of course, I created detective agency called 2II Private Investigation, which seemed a bit extreme. Continue reading
This Yamaha is a festival of useless cosmetic flourishes. Its drooping lines and pudgy bulges are just silly. Its ancillary components are remarkably overweight. The design team been must have told We don’t care, it just can’t look like last year’s model. I really didn’t want to start a new project, but I just couldn’t resist. Like picking at a strip of peeling wallpaper.
As a species, we scramble around trying to improve our situation. We invent, experiment, build and create, all in the hope of finding something better than whatever it is that we already have. We like change.
Nature, however, prefers things as they were. What follows is an example of that ongoing disagreement.
These old shackles probably should have been retired long before they reached this level of wear. On the other hand, their extended service has given them a look that the most creative of ‘distressing’ efforts could never match.
Even though ‘repurposing’ has become an overused and somewhat annoying buzzword, I think the underlying concept is sound on many levels, and even noble in an environmental context. Continue reading
One bright day in late autumn a colony of ants were bustling about in the warm sunshine, drying out the grain they had stored up during the summer, when a starving Grasshopper, his fiddle under his arm, came up and humbly begged for a bite to eat.
“What!” cried the ants in surprise, “haven’t you stored anything away for the winter? What in the world were you doing all last summer?” Continue reading
“Sometimes a television is just a birdhouse” (S. Freud, 1922} Continue reading
A visual pun. Lag screw made of wood. Sorry.
This is special to me. I started it a long time ago as a present for someone, but didn’t finish it in time to give it to them. Many years later, I set out to complete it, but found it had become something different in the intervening years, both in appearance and in its meaning to me. That’s all I really care to share about this aspect of the Flying Fish. Continue reading
A small and rather personal sculpture. Small, because it’s not very big. Personal, because during it’s creation, watching steel melt in the flame hypnotized me, for the lack of a better word. I was transported to a different place, and I merely observed as this emerged. Continue reading
I work part time at a small foundry. I come in once or twice a week as an independent contractor to maintain the machines, repair equipment and fabricate things as need be. At one point I was asked to build a few flasks- frames to hold patterns. Continue reading
I worked several years for a shellfish company in New Haven. I was hired as a captain, and I operated a number of boats for them, clam boats primarily, from fifty-five to a hundred feet in length. The boat in this anecdote was the Ada C. Lore, about 90′ as paced off on the dock If you do a Google search, you’ll find stories and photos of her post-retirement life as a restored charter schooner in Maine, but when this story happened, she was was a just a tired old clam boat.
In the 1930’s, Harpo Marx visited Russia in the combined role of ambassabor and performer. The Cryillic alphabet rendered his name as something like Xapno Mapcase. I learned of this many years ago while reading his autobiography, and have often used it as my online identity. It was a unique alias at one time; less and less as time goes by. In reality, though, I’m not Xapno. Continue reading
I had a pretty nice ride home this afternoon. Peering out through a raindrop spattered windshield at a silvery December fog triggered a string of memories of running a fishing boat out of New Haven, Ct in the 1990s. Exploring these normally dormant recollections pulled me into such deep reverie that I nearly cruised past my exit. Continue reading
This may seem too boat-specific to have broader value, but it might apply to anyone who uses threaded pipe fittings.
Yes, after a long, long period of stability, we’ve sold out, and are looking for a new home base.
This isn’t really the sort of thing that I expected to post here, but it is relevant in that it affects my progress and activity in most other matters. For instance, many if the pieces I would like to photograph for inclusion this site are in storage, as well as most of my photography stuff
Fred Waring was a very popular musician from the 1920s into the 1950s. During this career, he earned both the appellation ‘The Man Who Taught America To Sing’ and the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest honor the U.S. government can bestow on a civilian. Personally, I’d never heard of him prior to doing this bit of background research. Continue reading
Original sculpture incorporating copper, glass, industrial and organic remains.
Increasingly, we see the term ‘Tribal’ applied to tattoos and other graphic designs that vaguely resemble genuine ethnic cultural symbols. That got me to wondering exactly what makes something ‘tribal’. Continue reading
This used to be an EICO Model 460 DC Wide Band 4.5 MHz Oscilloscope. Once the oscilloscope lost its ability to analyze signal frequencies with any degree of accuracy, it was simply cast off, its useful life ended. Continue reading
I found this old carpenter’ s box lying on a tarp in the middle of a vast flea market. There were a few hand tools still in it, possibly original, maybe not. The box is plainly made and humble. I imagine it was built for the simple purpose of holding its owner’s tools. I wonder who made it, and how their story went. Continue reading
I consider this a portrait, in that the subject presents its worn, patient visage with inscrutable dignity.
Margaret Winifred Tarrant (1888-1959) was a prolific and popular English illustrator, best known for the charming illustrations she produced for various fairy tale and children’s books.
In my ongoing effort to preserve things worth saving, I have digitally restored a collection of her classic fairy tale illustrations. Additional prints will be added as they are completed. Continue reading
I was commissioned to build this guitar featuring a vintage Buick hubcap as a resonator. The earliest musical instruments were made from found materials- gourds, shells, and even human skulls were used as resonating chambers, so a hubcap makes perfect sense. Continue reading
My fond first memories hearken back to my carefree zygote days. What times those were; talk about potential! It was an era of no regrets, no apologies, no baggage. Continue reading
I’ve embarked on a mission to regain control of my accumulation of photos, numbering over 10,000 in digital form. Paper prints, slides and negatives amount to perhaps three times more than I can lift. I can easily lift all the digital ones, however.
Like many people I know, my collection of digital photos has grown like an untended garden, the good and valuable hidden and strangled by the weeds of poor planning and neglect. (A lot like my actual gardening experience.)
I’m still looking for a series of photos that I know exist, many weeks into my efforts. It took years to create a mess this dense, and there isn’t a single-click solution that can take the place of my personal judgement as to how these photos relate to one another, or which ones belong and which ones should be tossed.