Sunday, February 28, 2010

jocelyn lee's portraits is a dissatisfying and surreal series that makes me feel like god is a mathematical equation and has made us out of wax:

also, her the youngest parents is definitely worth a look:

Friday, February 26, 2010

finally managed to get some of my photos scanned. shooting totally manual, b&w film. lots to say, but technically i'm at work.

important things!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

during which emily takes a break from working at a piano to write about working at a piano

so. (whaet.) my instructor figures that since i brought the first movement of a bach concerto from infancy to performance in three weeks that i can do the same in one week with this piece:

i've posted this link on here before. it is one of those odd instances where the piece is both easier and harder than it looks. the rhythms really aren't that bad. and the heel-on-bflat-1 part, once you get it, is actually really fun. however, every time i practice it, without fail, somebody has to walk in and say something.
these include:
the trombone faculty member: "is that a real piece?"
the instrument tech, who works below the room where i frequently practice: "is that you stomping? can you wait until we've gone to lunch?"
and a variety of students who see me smashing my face, playing with my foot, or get worried when they hear screaming.

one person said, "i thought it was for percussion ensemble because it sounded bad."

backtrack to last friday, when i played the aforementioned bach in a masterclass for a (very accomplished but very dull) pianist named anton nel.

he asked me about the affect of the piece, and i replied that "it is when you are crying and you don't know whether to fall down or hit something."

his eyebrows went up. "i didnt see it as quite so dark."

and i was immediately and deeply embarrassed for the first time in a while.

my instructor took him out to lunch afterwards, where they talked. later that night, she got me drunk and told me what they'd talked about. "every time he hears that piece now, he'll think of your description, i promise you."

that's something, though, right?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

today's photograph is brought to you by diane arbus:

the king and queen of a senior citizens ball.

other than that, my thoughts include
-sore abs
-issues about pedaling bach
-silver halides (when i close my eyes)

and i'm going to NYC NY USA over spring break, motherfuckers!

Friday, February 12, 2010

i have woken up only in fits and starts for the last two days. coffee doesn't do it, exercise doesn't do it. bach does it, but not at eight or nine or ten in the morning. i've been waiting for the morning when i'd simply turn off my alarm and refuse to get out of bed. maybe my body has been deciding that for me. i get out of bed and am totally lethargic and confused and then my arms lock up.

every night for the last several nights i have dreamed about photography. sometimes i'm taking pictures, or going somewhere to take pictures, or just dreaming and dream and the next thing i know i'm taking exposures of the dream. sometimes i have an infinite number of exposures on a single roll of film. other times i cant get the shutter to release, or i do and then the shutter takes a long time to close. apparently this is the current obsessive medium. last night: a man lights himself on fire and rides a unicycle off the edge of a balcony in some one-block-wide city somewhere in the south. he is silhouetted against large white sheets that have been hung out to dry. i can't get my shutter to open. a large negative-space horse stands in front of a corner liquor store at three in the morning.

none of my waking shots are any good at all, and neither are the prints. and that's okay with me.

We have a huge barrel of wine, but no cups.
That's fine with us. Every morning
we glow and in the evening we glow again.

They say there's no future for us. They're right.
Which is fine with us.


Friday, February 5, 2010

i got my hair cut off today. needed a reinvention.

an old woman was sitting inside by the door with her walker when i went in. there was more shawl than old woman. everybody knew her and asked about her recent health problems. she didnt want to talk about her health problems: she wanted to talk about the war. she talked about the "japanese comin' right up behind us and we knew--". she spoke like the war had happened right before her trip to the salon. "that was my era," she said.

meanwhile, i entrusted myself to lady i'd never met before. she asked me to take off my glasses. extra trust. when she washed my hair i realized she smelled like cigarettes and for some reason this was comforting. we didnt speak much and this left a lot of opportunity for listening.

a man came in to get his mustache trimmed.

"do you want a haircut?" his stylist asked.

"no," he said. "just the mustache today."

"are you sure?"

"yeah. there's gonna be a lot of suits at the meeting next week so i want to be sure to look scruffy."

there followed a conversation about the mill union. about how the logging companies don't communicate enough. about how the few construction projects in the county weren't taking from local labor resources the county because of union issues. i learned the word "millwright."

we talked about the storm last night and the storm that's coming in tonight. we talked about the 6.0 earthquake yesterday and the 6.5 earthquake a couple weeks ago. i made a joke about contagious mustaches and nobody else thought it was funny.

it was the perfect microcosm of life at the triple junction.

one of the stylists was on the phone, "no, he's still up at the lighthouse. but when he get's off he wants to meet up at the brewery --"

was she talking about this man? i met him on a stormy hike up in trinidad and asked if i could take his picture. stranger number one. he is the god of lighthouses and creaky boats.

and this is what happened to me: it's a shitty picture but i'm happy with the cut.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

this evening, my fiction class spent the longest two hours on the planet on the WORST PIECE OF FICTION ON THE PLANET. it was worth two months of RE-WRITING and PRAYER before two hours of character analysis. two hours of "there isn't enough textual evidence to support any of this crap."

there are two distinct Contributors that i find in most of my english classes:

1. the ogre. (i've discussed the ogre before.) the ogre is usually larger than your average person, either in height or weight, though frequently both. this is usually emphasized by their unique lack of hygiene, which surrounds them like an atmosphere surrounds a planet. they never have questions. they only have statements. statements that have to do less with the subject matter and more with their profound personal life experiences with things like the affixes "pre-" and "-ed." when the ogre talks, people with glasses take off their glasses as if it might make the ogre disappear. nobody responds to the statements made by the ogre, because then the ogre will just keep talking. at first, teachers will try to stop the ogre by providing information. eventually the teachers learn that giving the ogre information is just giving the ogre attention, which makes the ogre expand. and keep talking. the ogre occurs in one out of every three classes at hsu and in nine out of every ten english classes.

2. the geriatric. this older woman is in the over-sixty program and gets to pay a fraction of the cost paid by all of the other students to ask unnecessarily in-depth questions about the syllabus/quiz/reading and rhapsodize about her experiences with childbirth/the adoption agency/gardening/stage fright/the man who comes over to their house every tuesday for dinner and sometimes drives her around town to show her the sidewalks he's just paved. the geriatric is also in most of the music classes at hsu. there are two instances of the geriatric in my friday piano rep class. they take up a good 20% of the hour, just of the two of them. there are thirteen other people in the class. it drives me fucking nuts. the geriatric occurs in one out of every four english classes, one and a seventh out of every one music class, and one out of five in all other classes.

sometimes you have a combination of the ogre and the geriatric, often referred to as the geriatric ogre. the geriatric ogre is a very large and unhealthy old woman who often has a rolling backpack, a laptop (that always needs access to THAT OUTLET RIGHT THERE SO COULD YOU MOVE THANKS, spit spraying everywhere like raid), slow-healing sores (often on the forearm), and the occasional small dog that the university puts up with pattering around campus because the dialogue just isnt worth it. (becky. becky is the name of the dog.)

these people take up SO MUCH TIME. sometimes i want to walk out of the classroom, let out a primal scream into the hallway, and walk back in. other times i just walk out. i'm better off working on bach or reading ray bradbury in the third story of the library.
successfully buried in the most excellent semester ever. senior recital is GOAL NUMERO UNO.

i can't begin to explain how much i want it to be Good. want want want.

work work work.