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Friday, February 8, 2008

I'm Not E. F. Hutton

Jimi Hendrix - (i) inspired by photo by David MontgomeryYou are part of my community, by coming here, by seeing this Hendrix for Art on Vinyl 3. But I may be not listening to you well enough. One thing about self-promotion is that it's making me really focus on me. This is good in the sense that I have more self-confidence and believe strongly in my underlying creation, my artwork. However, it, along with the asynchronous nature of communication on the web, is maybe causing me to ramble too much about myself. True, this is my blog about my art and background and should largely be about me, but one of my main goals in even being online at all is to engender community. I find myself reaching out at this point to find active members of the online community. I've found Tina Su and commented on several very well put posts on her blog. Her success story found on ProBlogger inspired me to explore Digg more thoroughly, as the active people there seem very active in finding and sharing the content and creations of others that inspired them. Probably a good group of people to connect with, if I can. Also, from a comment about my contest, I found Julie Fletcher's post about racism and hate which made me think about stepping into the shoes of others.

Then this morning from a comment on my blog I found Enhance Life's post about listening. I need to listen. Maybe I'm pushing too hard, maybe I'm putting too much out there, I don't know. I don't know because I'm not listening hard enough. So... huh, this is tricky. Maybe check out what I've said at those other great sites? Or if you don't even know why you're here:

CHECK OU... sheesh, stop shouting. It only makes for hurt ears. Ok, done, enough.


Wednesday, February 6, 2008

"Ich bin ein Berliner!" or I'll Ship There, At Least

This one's for a show coming up in March up in Canada: Art in Vinyl 3. I found out about these shows from a cool artist involved with them, Rodrigo Pradel. This brings up a good point to clarify about my contest and my work in general. I can ship internationally. I've set up my PayPal account to allow for it, charging $50 for shipping (it's $10 for shipping within the US). I looked at the USPS site for priority international mail rates and found that to be around the right amount, with packages delivered in about 2 weeks. I still have to find out about the customs forms, but that hopefully won't be too complicated.

I'm also telling you about this because in the last couple of weeks, a site in Brazil and one in Germany have put up those posts about me, bringing huge traffic both to here and to my gallery site. The one in Germany included me in what looks like a daily video too! A magazine in Italy might do a profile on me in March as well.

So, anyway, I wanted to make sure you knew the contest is open to anybody. Also, your entry doesn't have to be a new creation. Paticus entered this blog post, which is exactly the kind of story I'm after. So it could be a photo you took years ago that you've already scanned in and posted on Flicker or whatever, as long as it's your creation about a story from your life.

My homepage seems to be directing visitors to my contest, so I guess the added link is working. If you want to tell your friends and family about my contest:

CHECK OUT MY WEB... oh wait, I already linked to my gallery site. Sorry, my bad. Peace.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Ask Not What Your Country Can Do For You

John F. KennedyWhen all is said and done, what will humanity be remembered for, what will the ages say about you?

[EDIT - 5/15/08: To all those finding this post while on a quest for information regarding JFK's inaugural address and his famous quote, I found out that it was inspired by a line written by Khalil Gibran, the author of "The Prophet". The line can be found in "The New Frontier". It's the 7th paragraph. This isn't to take away from JFK's rephrasing it into a monster of an directive to a nation, though.

Also, the contest described below is over, but I'm hoping I get to do another one! I need your help. I need enough subscribers either by RSS feed or email so that I'll get enough entries. So make it easier on yourself to keep up with my oh-so-neat little blog, and subscribe!]

"No man is an island, he's a peninsula," said Jefferson Airplane. We are all connected and we're the better for embracing that: "Men often hate each other because they fear each other; they fear each other because they don't know each other; they don't know each other because they can not communicate; they can not communicate because they are separated," said MLK. I guess my main purpose in creating and promoting Vinyl Art at all is to contribute as I can, seeking my way of bringing people together. So, I'm taking King's first step even though I definitely can't see the rest of the staircase, and starting my contest. Woohoo!

Your Grand Prize: one (1) piece of Vinyl Art of the recording artist of your (reasonable) choice, framed and delivered

The 9 Second Prizes: your entry featured on the sidebar of this blog

Everybody's Deadline: February 29th, 2008

How You Enter: I want to know your story (you feel comfortable enough to share) of when music had the biggest impact on your life, like a concert, or a song you danced to with your future mate, or an important moment in human history that changed you in large part due to music involved. It's gotta be true and about you. The entry can be in any form: you can write the story in a comment here, you can post an image on Flickr and send me a FlickrMail about it, you can make a video to upload to YouTube and send me a message there with it attached, you can create a post on your own blog with a trackback to here, or you can even use regular ol' snail mail (address available on request). Basically, any format, online or off, is acceptable as long as it's your creation and your story. Every entry will be moderated for appropriateness (my blog isn't "adult", ;) ) and listed in the comments to this post for all to see.

How You Become A Winner: On March 1, 2008, I'll start going through all the entries and pick the 10 top ones. By "top", I mean the most successful at communicating your story. I want to really "get" why you've chosen that particular story to tell. I'm not going to judge it based on comparisons of content. I'm going to judge the entries based on the whole package, kind of like how dogs are judged in Best of Show competitions. I know there aren't "breed standards", but I mean I'm going to look at the facts of the story and judge the entry on how well I think it conveys your experience of those facts and the impact it had on you. Then I'll pick one of the top 10 randomly as the Grand Prize winner!

I thought about putting the top 10 up for voting by you to pick the winner, but for this first contest, I want to keep it simple. I don't really know how big my audience is and how many hoops you'd be willing to jump through to win a painting at this point. Also, I'll see how many entries I get before committing to when I'll announce the winners. I'm going to do my best with this, but everybody has told me that contests can go haywire, so let's just make it a good one! You can always ask me questions to clarify before submitting your entry, I'll make important ones public. I don't care if I get all the entries on the last day of this month if you want to keep refining or if you just procrastinate, but if you want more people to see your entries, get them submitted!

If you want inspiration, or if you don't understand the Grand Prize:


and also the more entries, the better a contest will result for us all, so tell your friends! Peace.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Why Eminem Should Be Respected

Eminem on MockingbirdI wanted to see if you'd picked up on something. Peace. I've been signing that quite a bit recently. You might not have noticed because it is a word thrown about too freely I think. I don't have it as a "sig" anywhere. I type it each time. Each time, hitting that period after typing the word makes me think, makes me feel. I feel different emotions depending on when I type it, but I type it each time deliberately to stay connected to Life. Peace period. That's all that should need be said. Quietly, simply, with gut-wrenching true feeling. Do you almost cry when you say peace? The huge weight associated with it, does it come to mind when you flash the peace sign? I hope so. Like "love", "peace" should have meaning behind it when it's said, I think. It should stir in you the desire to act, to do.

Eminem's multi-faceted message in his music communicates his anger and frustration with the state of affairs both in his life and in the world. He seeks peace. Venting, he makes it ok to feel and express dark emotions. He conveys how conflict itself ends up winning when the two sides involved battle each other instead of uniting against the problem underlying. I respect his creativity, his way with words, and yes, what I see as his message. I know his productions, his words, are controversial, pointed to as inciting and insightful. Good. Discussion brings issues into the open and can lead to tolerance and understanding if people are open. People usually have walls up for protection, though. I wish people would be open. Pain exists, but it can be used towards understanding instead of hate. Hate means you care about the other side, means you can love too. You try listening for where the hate is coming from, and you can break downs walls with trust, compassion, and openness. And what you put out always comes back around too.

I thought I'd share with you what I think, but I certainly won't take it personally if you disagree. Disagreement can lead to wider understanding. Understanding can lead to...


Eminem 02/01/08