All day Wednesday, then all night Thursday night I played through both sides of the Enter the Matrix video game. I was only able to finish both sides in under 35 hours of play because I had all the cheats I could muster in action. And many levels still took me dozens of attempts. Anyway, I pushed through it like that so I could access all 21 clips of live-action footage the Wachowski brothers created exclusively for the video game. I have now seen every single clip several times and have begun to incorporate what they reveal into my understanding of the Matrix universe. I need to re-watch M1 and M2, and I have asked a friend of mine to try to get me a bootleg copy of M2 so I can re-watch and re-watch certain portions of it until I have understood every nuance. Interestingly, the parts I am most interested in studying are the parts (aside form the ‘rave’ scene) that I have read and heard the most dissent from the public about; the slow dialogues and monologues from the councilor, the oracle, the Merovingian, and the Architect to Neo about control, understanding, cause and effect, and freedom of choice. Does that count as a spoiler? Revealing that various characters talk? Anyway, after I’ve done all that and seen M2 in a theatre at least once more, I’ll write my extensive thoughts on the subject. Extensive.
I haven’t even touched ‘The Rules’ since the day I got it, what with my mind being controlled by the Matrix lately. Also, I’ve been reading Green Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson, which has been taking my full book-reading attention. Though in the last two days I have purchased many used books. For a total of $6.50 I now have two huge Sci-Fi anthologies, The Complete Plays of Christopher Marlowe, Gulliver’s Travels, an early full-size edition of The Gunslinger (have you heard he’s re-written it? I may read the re-written version, but … come on!), Weaveworld, Different Seasons (hardback), The Illustrated Man, and The Writer’s Guide To Creating A Science Fiction Universe. Oh, and after I finish Green Mars I need to start in on The Catcher in the Rye before the MEVBC meeting on or around the 1st.
Speaking of revisionist history, I’ve begun painting black around the edges of all my paintings that I hadn’t already painted full around the sides of.
Wait, we weren’t speaking of revisionist histories, were we? Nevermind, then. We’ll talk about something else instead… How abour Las Vegas? So, My friend Art is getting married in Vegas on Friday the 13th (of June). I’m the Best Man, so by all accounts I should attend. I have recently arranged that unless I find other travel accommodations or am unable to attend I will ride from Phoenix to Vegas and back with Art’s father, George. What I have not arranged is hotel accommodations for myself. Because I am not entirely sure I will be able to afford them. I have a large degree of faith that there is a market for the art I am creating, and I even believe that at least some of it will sell here in Pine, but … so far there has not been much serious interest in my paintings in the store. Now, the summer season hasn’t really started. That’s tomorrow, and I plan on opening up at least an hour early, since that’s when the Art/Craft Fair is supposed to open. This weekend is supposed to be like ‘a zoo’ with more people than I’ve ever seen coming through the store, and hopefully a lot of business. From now until Labor Day Weekend is the ‘busy season’ for Pine’s economy, and it is expected, I am told, to remain busy during that entire period. But … if I still haven’t sold a single painting through the store after this weekend and the next, my high hopes will begin to slide, and my plans will have to face changes. See, I need to sell enough paintings to cover hotel & food &ct. for Vegas the weekend of 225.0 (6/13), and then again to cover hotel & food & gas &ct. for the San Diego International Comicon 2003, 333-342.0 (7/16-7/20). In addition to my paintings, I’ve got a couple of my manual typewriters (more at home in the store, which mostly sells antiques and collectibles) for sale at reasonable prices a little lower than one would find online. Maybe someone will buy those. If both sell, I can almost afford a couple nights in a cheap Vegas hotel. OR if one painting sells, I can afford Vegas.
I keep making new paintings. I’ll try to get photos of them online soon. The one I most recently finished may be difficult to photograph and capture it’s essense. Or really to show you what it looks like without half a dozen photos of more. And even then, you’ll be missing so much of the experience. I painted it intentionally so that it would say something different to your hands as your eyes. It has a visual texture within its color, within its extreme glossiness, and it has a physical texture that feels … different from what it looks like it would feel like. It is about turbulence and peace co-existing, about depth and transparency and complexity and unity… It is a love story. Oh, and there’s the one I’m working on now that is temporarily on hold until I can get myelf to a store and get some painter’s masking tape, preferably 3 inches wide. I was working on it one way and then in another, and then I made a mistake… and I spent several days trying to figure out how to keep working on it until I was satisfied with it, and I determined I needed 12 3″x3″ squares masked off so I can paint the next layer properly. Contrasting with the other couple dozen ideas I had about it, this one corresponds to the original math, the original charts and graphs I made to describe the visual plane of the original concept in a meaningful way, extending the idea and making up for my ‘mistakes’ at the same time. Some of the other ideas were just … well, they were irrational, just ways to cover up that any mistake had been made rather than to continue toward the original artistic goal.
Speaking of artistic goals, I don’t like a lot of the attitude that my correspondence art class is imposing on itself, and wants to impose upon me. It keeps saying (directly and via implication) that such and such a thing is the reason all artists create art, that such and such methods serve all art, that such and such principles should guide every artist in the creation of every work. Except that I read it and (almost, but not quite, entirely like my reactions to some of the things in ‘The Rules’) speak aloud to the books, saying “WHAT!?!” in reaction to some assumed attitude. It’s like they’re grooming people to become corporate art drones, with rules for how everything should go together that I personally identify only with advertising, not with ‘pure art’. (Art for art’s sake.) I can learn some things from the program, but … much of it I seem simply to be rejecting wholly. Other things… they get wrong. Like, seriously wrong. I tried calling and talking to them about it, and the first guy was just flabbergasted and said he’d have the ‘official class instructor’ call me the next day. I tried talking to her, but I ended up teaching her, not only what the book says, but more depth of information on the subjects, and tried to explain the correct information – she refused to understand – and then just tried to explain how what the book said in one section contradicted what it said in another and on the Examination, and then she just claimed powerlessness. So, I’ll keep working on the class; the next pack the send me is supposed to include their figure study unit, which I’ve never really studied, so hopefully I can learn some technique there.
I just spent about 150 minutes updating and balancing Quicken so I could get an idea of my financial situation. Less hopefull than I’d thought. Not like “Oh no, I’m going to default on my debts and go to debtor’s prison!”, but seriously, if those paintings don’t start selling I’m screwed. Except not really screwed as much as just can’t go do fun stuff. So, not that bad, but not that good, either. I don’t know. I hate the idea of changing my art to suit public opinion of what art should be. I want to create the art I want to create without thoughts of whether it’s sale-able becoming part of the creative process. There are people who like my art, I know there are, but … I suppose they aren’t the ones with money or aren’t the ones who come through Pine or … something. Something.
I’m tired. I was going to watch The Matrix tonight, but then I did that whole money thing… it took so frelling long that I’m already beyond the time I planned on going to bed. You know, because I plan on waking up early tomorrow to open the store early. That and I’ve been feeling extra tired during the days the last few days, and don’t want to be that way on the ‘busiest day of the year’ tomorrow. Too bad I haven’t found a source (or the money for) Modafinil/Provigil.