Portrait by Remo Frangiosa

Philly-Bob’s Free-for-All 2022

One man's visual art, largely consisting of digital manipulations of images, taken from (1) my own photographs/videos, (2) downloaded from the Public Domain, or (3) utilized under the Fair Use provision of copyright law. Also, occasional prose observations on politics and life.

Click on a pic to enlarge. May take several clicks to get full-size.

ARCHIVE: Webpage Proprietor's Portraits II

Time to change my image at top of this web page. The new image is a small pencil portrait done by Remo Frangiosa. It was done while I sat for Remo's portrait class over a two-week period at Philadelphia's historic Plastic Club in September, 2015.
The second image is a larger painting I commissioned from the Plastic Club's Andy Hoffmann.

Next are two other images also used as masthead portraits. Third image is an iPad self-portait in a coffee shop (approx. 2014). It is probably the best representation of my revulsion at the aging process and my sadness at the prospect of diminishing cognitive powers.
Fourth is an attempt to limit portrait to the fewest number of facial features and still be recognizable (approx. 2012). (Sorry: unlike the other images on this page, these masthead pictures don't enlarge when clicked...)
Fifth is a drawing done in our Open Studio workshop by Meri Collier, a Toronto-based artist and member of the Plastic Club.

Next row: three photos of pictures done when I sat for our Portraits class, followed by an image by Paul Jones and a self-portrait done in my recent frame/winged trilobite style.
Last are five new images from Mike Nathan of our Tuesday Digital Share. Mike spent a lifetime doing wedding photographs and uses those skills to craft "Digital Compositions" poking fun at Tuesday Share members -- especially long-bearded Bob.


In the foreground, a diagram of a posture exercise from the 1974 "Somo-psychic Power: Using its Miracle Force for a Fabulous New Life" (Link1).
"Would you like to be more successful at your job? Do you need to find financial backers for your money-making idea? Do you wish your sex life was more exciting? Do you suffer from constant aches and pains? Would you like to turn your worst enemy into your biggest supporter? Do you long for happiness, success, health, wealth, and friendship?"
In the background, an AI-generated still life, light filtering through bottles on an alchemist or apothecary table (Link2). Unfortunately the link has gone dead so I can't credit the uploader by name. I like his work.

Note that a recent legal decision (Link3) held that AI-generated work is not entitled to copyright protection.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/frank-rudolph-young-somo-psychic-power
Link2: https://boards.4chan.org/b/thread/891195076 
Link3: https://aibusiness.com/ml/ai-generated-comic-book-loses-copyright-protection

December 22, 2022


NOTE: Sometimes Bob Moore reviews books written in foreign languages whose translations into English have won prizes.

The 2021 prize for translation from French into English went to Hubert Mingarelli's "The Invisible Land" (Link1) translated by Sam Taylor.

This slim (137-page) novel takes place in a defeated Germany, shortly after the Nazis surrendered. It follows a war photographer, his assignment finished, waiting to go home. Impulsively, he decides to take a short trip to photograph German families in their homes. An occupation officer assigns him the fancy limousine of an executed German officer and assigns a young American, O'Leary, as his driver and body guard.

The novel covers the two weeks the photographer and O'Leary travel around, almost aimlessly.

The time and place provide horrors enough -- including bodies in a concentration camp, corpses floating in rivers, and the grim mistrust and hostility of the defeated Germans. But Mingarelli handles these matters with a light touch.

What gives the novel its haunting tone is the everyday life of the two travelers:

"I fell asleep and dreamed about the tarpaulins that we'd spread over the dead that night, and in my dream they lifted up and we thought it was the wind and even though we hammered stakes into the ground to hold them down they still kept lifting up. We held them down with our hands, using all our strength, but a greater force continued to lift them up and each of us knew deep down that it was the dead, pushing at the tarpaulin with their gray legs."

O'Leary and the photographer share the discomforts of camping out in the car, form no attachments with the German citizens they photograph, and know nothing of the larger world. The book ends as the two are returning to the car after one last photography session, during which a miscommunication led O'Leary to shoot a farmer.

The two trudge back to the car.

"For more than an hour only our footsteps reverberated in the night. O'Leary's kept fading behind and I kept stopping and waiting for him. After a while, as we were walking together, I said: 'The sea isn't far, O'Leary. Check the petrol when we get to the car and if you think we have enough left, we can try to find somewhere near the water where we can sleep. You want to try that?' "A long time after, as we were approaching ... the car, I heard a word muffled by a sigh and I thought he was murmuring an answer to himself, that he'd said yes to a question he had asked inside his head. And just as I remembered the question that I had asked him, he whispered, the words half-broken by a sob: 'Yes, sir, we can try.'"

Is that optimism, or pessimism?

Sadly, Mingarelli (pictured above) died of cancer in Grenoble, France, in January of 2020.

Link1: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hubert_Mingarelli

December 21, 2022


SOURCES: IMAGES: Eight camouflage patterns discussed in a thread on Reddit's 'K' (Weapons) board (Link1) MUSIC: Excerpt from 1949 suite "The Battle of Stalingrad: Stalingrad in Flames" (Link2) by Soviet and Armenian composer Aram Khatchaturian (Link3) FRAME COLOR: "Coyote Brown" (Link4)

Link1: https://boards.4channel.org/k/thread/56358556
Link2: https://archive.org/details/lp_the-battle-for-stalingrad-the-fall-of_aram-khatchaturian-dmitri-shostakovich/disc1/01.02.+Suite+From+The+Film+%22Battle+For+Stalingrad%22%3A+Stalingrad+In+Flames.mp3
Link3: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aram_Khachaturian
Link4: https://colorcodes.io/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/Coyote-brown-color-swatch.jpg

July 23, 2022


Time to create a web page for 2023 and file the web page for 2022.

In order to clear time for this task (1. Philly-Bob's Free for All 2023), and for (2.) installing a new computer for Janice, and for (3.) figuring out money and taxes for next year, I'm going to cut back on my work this week.

And this post will be the first post on my page in 2023.

December 10, 2022


Looking through an old type specimen catalog -- the 1923 "American Type Founders Specimen Book & Catalogue" (Link1) -- I ran across some things that made me remember the time I spent in old-time printing shops, with their hot-lead linotype machines and hand-set type. The 1100-page ATF catalog, now in the public domain, is a treasure, especially in the decorations and ornaments at the end. Check it out!
Link1: https://archive.org/details/1923AmericanTypeFoundersSpecimenBookCatalogue

December 10, 2022


I ran across a custom in the retro-Germanic religion of Asatru that closely resembles a custom of my boyhood Roman Catholic religion: the sign of the cross. It appears in the 1989 "A Book Of Troth" (Link1), a relatively recent collection of ancient Germanic practices or "workings". A discussion of how Asatru fits in the modern politico-religious landscape can be found here.
"To begin, the person should visualize a bright shining ball of golden light two or three feet above the head. Then with the right hand reach up into that light and make a fist, grasping the light-substance in the hand, which should then be drawn down to the forehead. Touch your forehead and says: “Tiw!” then continue to pull the light down through the head and touch the mouth and say: "Woden!” Next draw the light down in a column through the body and touch the solar plexus and say: "Thunar!" Then move the fist, and the light contained in it, from the solar plexus to the left shoulder; touch the shoulder and say: “Frey!” Now, drawing light across the body in a horizontal direction, touch the light to the right shoulder and say: 'Freya!'"

Link1: https://archive.org/details/abookoftrothbyedredthorsson
Link2: https://archive.org/details/j.-g.-macqueen-hititler-akilcelen-yayinlari
Link3: https://archive.org/details/B-001-038-724-ALL

December 4, 2022


A drawing to illustrate an ad for Lydia Pinkham's Vegetable Compound, from a 1946 issue of the movie magazine "Photoplay" (Link1), sold to treat "female functional monthly disturbances." The illustration's complicated sky and the unhappy look on the girl's face are meant to show those 'disturbances.' The ad copy reads:

"Are You Just a Plaything of Nature?
"Nature may endow you with breathtaking beauty, a lovely curvaceous figure. She may bestow gifts on you that make you a brilliant actress, a leader in your class at college, sought after at dances, or a charming wife and mother.
"Yes, Nature may do all this. But even so—you may find your face mockingly slapped if you suffer these distressing symptoms which so many unfortunate girls and women do."

The compound was as much as 20% alcohol and modern science dismisses it as a "valueless preparation kept on the market for about fifty years by means of lying advertisements and worthless testimonials."

However, Pinkham is interesting for other reasons: an early female business leader and an abolitionist who, surprisingly, split with the Quakers over the issue of slavery -- see the discussion of Quakers and slavery below (Link2).

She was also the subject of a rip-roaring Irish drinking song: "Lily the Pink" (Link3 & embedded below).

Around that image, another bookbinder's ornament from the 1937 "Buch und Schrift 10.1937 - Jahrbuch der Einbandkunstand" (Link4; trans: 'Book and writing 10.1937 - yearbook of binding').

Link1: https://archive.org/details/Photoplay-1946-08-Vol-29-No-3
Link2: https://www.friendsjournal.org/slavery-in-the-quaker-world/
Link3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5ak-JkzfKc 
Link4: https://archive.org/details/buch-und-schrift-10

December 1, 2022


In the foreground, a photograph by Tina Modotti called "Crisis" from the 1927 modernist literary journal "Transition" (Link1).

Modotti was living in Mexico and the simple composition (sickle, ear of corn, bandolier) seems to address some of the political currents of the time. Modotti was an artist's model, actress, and a Communist Party member who appears in Diego Rivera's murals and Edward Weston photographs. In the 2002 film "Frida," she was played by Ashley Judd. A six-part TV series starring Monica Belluci, ("Radical Eye: The Life and Times of Tina Modotti"), portraying her adventurous life (Link2), is still in production.

Modotti died at the age of 45 in what may have been an assassination.

Behind that still life, a bookbinder's ornament from the 1937 "Buch und Schrift 10.1937 - Jahrbuch der Einbandkunstand" (Link3; trans: 'Book and writing 10.1937 - yearbook of binding').

Link1: https://archive.org/details/transition-3
Link2: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt8834662/
Link3: https://archive.org/details/buch-und-schrift-10

November 30, 2022


Illustrator Steven Dohanos did this picture for a 1942 Life magazine. It shows the train wreck of Casey Jones' Engine 382, which ran into a stationary freight train. The story is told on page 241 in the 1944 "Treasury of American Folklore" (Link2). There are many different versions of the Ballad of Casey Jones, even a version by the Grateful Dead: "Driving that train/High on cocaine/Casey Jones you better/Watch your speed"

Out of respect to the illustrator, only slight changes in texture and color introduced into the image.

Two more songs that made me tear up pver these emotionally intense holidays: recently-deceased singer Irene Cara's "Flashdance" at Link3 and her "Fame" at Link4. File under "Old Man Sadly Remembers Optimism and Beauty of Youth." This New York Times obituary (Link5) hints at some of the roadblocks Cara faced after those two hits.
Link1: https://archive.org/details/life-1942-01-26-v-12-n-04 (since removed)
Link2: https://archive.org/details/in.ernet.dli.2015.29419
Link3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ILWSp0m9G2U
Link4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ChhCpSVrjvU
Link5: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/11/26/arts/music/irene-cara-dead.html

November 28, 2022


A digital collection of different illustrations (photographs and drawings) from a 1936 travel magazine "La Vie d'Italia" (Link1; trans: 'The Streets of Italy'), combined with Egyptian dingbats and the word 'Merz' in the font "Egyptian Nights" (Link2) by Jonathan Harris. The background picture is a photo of canal-side Venice.
After a difficult period in my personal affairs, the song 'I'll Be Seeing You' (Link3) sent me into tears. It appears as the second half of a medly on an out-of-print 1958 album by The Four Sergeants "World War II Songs in Hi-Fi" (Link3)
Link1: https://archive.org/details/2022-11-26-17-18
Link2: https://www.dafont.com/egyptian-nights.font
Link3: https://archive.org/details/lp_world-war-ii-songs-in-hi-fi_the-four-sergeants-rose-marie-jun

November 27, 2022


A collage of two images from a 1976 Russian textbook "Семиотика И Диагностика Женских Болезней" (Link1; trans: 'Semiotics and Diagnosis of Women's Diseases'), one a chart of five physiotherapy positions and the other six photos of hysterograms using contrast mediums (turned sideways).
Link1: https://archive.org/details/1976_20221124

November 26, 2022


German artist Kurt Schwitters was one of the targets of Adolf Hitler's 1937 "degenerate art" traveling show. Here are four images on a page from that show; one of them (lower left) is Schwitters' 1918 "Merzbild" (Link1). The four black and white images are placed over one of Schwitters' 1921 color abstractions, "Box-R-Bild" (Link2)

Schwitters comes up because, in my new series of reviews of prize-winning translations, an upcoming subject is a selection from a German "rumination" on exiled Schwitters thinking over his life and art in exile in England's Lake District.

Link1: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Entartete_Kunst,_Degenerate_Art_exhibition_catalogue,_1937,_p._23,_Johannes_Molzahn,_Jean_Metzinger,_Kurt_Schwitters.jpg
Link2: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Kurt_Schwitters#/media/File:Box-R-Bild_by_Kurt_Schwitters,_1921_-_Galleria_nazionale_d'arte_moderna_-_Rome,_Italy_-_DSC05478.jpg

November 25, 2022


On top of another composition based on bookbinder inlay patterns, the family crest of Sir John Hawkins, the Englishman who led the first English slave-raiding expedition in 1562. Seen in a partisan book of Irish history, "Ireland 1845 - 1850 The Perfect Holocaust And Who Kept It Perfect" (Link1).
Link1: https://archive.org/details/ireland-1845-1850-the-perfect-holocaust-and-who-kept-it-perfect

November 20, 2022


November 17, 2022

Ran across three collections of bookbinder patterns published in Germany, "Jahrbuch der Einbandkunst" (Link1; trans: "Yearbook of Binding Art"), from 1927, 1928 and 1931.

Was especially fascinated by the patterns of gold inlay on leather book covers. Will be using those patterns for a while.

For instance, the pattern above was created by combining and colorizing the two black-and-white patterns shown at right.

I'm still working on freeing myself from my dependence on Adobe Photoshop, making everything very slow.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/jahrbuch-der-einbandkunst-1.1927

November 16, 2022


My father described with cold precision the terror that the sound of an incoming artillery round from a German '88' produced in him and his men. Indeed, he got a Purple Heart from a wound by an 88 -- "I got a medal cuz I was too dumb to go to the hospital," he said characteristically.

Here, in the foreground, a German soldier hoists a shell for the 88, an image from Reddit's 'K' (weapons) discussion group. (Link1)

In the background, distorted, another soldier loads an 88 shell into the gun, a photo from the Warfare History Network (Link2).

This image and previous suggested by my horror over the Russian artillery bombardment of Ukrainian town and villages. Went back to Photoshop in my eagerness to get this done quickly, but sadly in just a week I discover I have lost some of my command of Photoshop.
Link1: https://boards.4channel.org/k/thread/55857234; withdrawn; later found at https://www.reddit.com/r/TankPorn/comments/n6vm7g/88cm_pzgr3943_apcbche_l71_its_a_flak_88_round_and/
Link2: https://warfarehistorynetwork.com/article/why-german-88mm-gun-was-best-in-the-war/

November 13, 2022


Some students in Salzburg winding a replica of an onager, a medieval catapult, an early form of artillery that lobbed stones at castle walls. The image is from 1909 German "Neue Jahrbücher für das klassische Altertum, Geschichte und deutsche Litteratur und für Pädagogik" (Link1; trans: 'New yearbooks for classical antiquity, history and German literature and for education').
Another image done without Photoshop.
Link1: https://archive.org/details/altertum-23

November 11, 2022


Another image done without benefit of Adobe Photoshop.
The images are from two biology books. The foreground image, from a 1978 Brazilian textbook "Biologia" (Link1), shows a man afflicted with localized "Hypertrichosis", the presence of hair in the ears. The background image of three skulls is an illustration from a 2016 Spanish text "Introducción A La Antropología Biológica" (Link2). Also in the background is a dingbat font of game characters, "KHScala" (Link3) by font designer Televo.
Link1: https://archive.org/details/biologia-pdfdrive/page/n3/mode/1up
Link2: https://archive.org/details/aa.-vv.-introduccion-a-la-antropologia-biologica-2016
Link3: https://www.dafont.com/khscala.font

November 10, 2022


The main thing about this image is that from beginning to end I did not use Adobe Photoshop. It took a lot longer than usual (using Gimp and Affinity), but by the end of the year I might be able to cancel my expensive ($58/month) contract with Adobe for the full range of "Creative Cloud" products. At first, I got it for only $42/month on a trial, but it has now reverted to full price. Adobe switched over to the annual rental contract sometime around 2010.
The image is an illustration from an Indian religious text "Pavitra Go Go Seva Ka Tatparya Kya Hai Of Japesh Bandyopadhyay And Paromita Bandyopadhyay Shri Hari Das Shastri" (Link1).
And everybody vote tomorrow!
Link1: https://archive.org/details/cqgM_pavitra-go-go-seva-ka-tatparya-kya-hai-of-japesh-bandyopadhyay-and-paromita-band

November 7, 2022


A collage of images from a 1970 Sears Toy Catalog (Link1).
Link1: https://archive.org/details/1970-sears-toy-catalog (has been withdrawn)

November 5, 2022


NOTE: Sometimes Bob Moore reviews books written in foreign languages whose translations into English have won prizes. The list of recent translation winners can be seen here. I am grateful to the Free Library of Philadelphia for obtaining the books.

The 2021 prize for translation from Arabic into English went to Rasha Adly's "The Girl with the Braided Hair" translated by Sarah Enamy (Link1; author portrait above digitized and stylized from Link2).

It tells the story of two romances, one a sophisticated, modern-day relationship between a bookish art historian and a real estate appraiser, both middle-aged; the other a 1790 triangle between a beautiful 15-year-old Egyptian girl and two officers in Napoleon's army during his invasion of Egypt in 1798.

Zeinab, daughter of a Sheikh, is "a girl, slender like a stalk of rattan, her skin an unusual color, not white and not dark, but the color of saffron dust. Lips red as cherries, hair black and thick like a waterfall, a spring in her step like a leaping deer." Shortly after the conquest, Napoleon sees Zeinab in a crowd and asks her father to bring her to the great Celebration of the Flooding of the Nile.

There, Napoleon seeks her out and invites her to his chambers, where he undoes her braids, asks her to dance for him, and expresses his admiration for her beauty, but does not sleep with her. (The translator does a brief reading in English of the scene between Napoleon and Zeinab here

Instead, Napoleon refers the simple village girl to a couturier to be groomed and dressed in the French style and to a scholar to be tutored in the French language.

"At nine every morning, a magnificent carriage crunched over the gravel, its horses beating the ground with their hooves, cutting through the narrow alleyway and raising a cloud of dust in its wake that blocked all light. It was Bonaparte's personal carriage, driven by a special coachman ... come to pick up a fifteen-year-old girl, a girl with braids that lay over her shoulders and a shy smile set in innocent, childlike features."

Zeinab also catches the eye of a young artist in Napoleon's army, who paints her portrait.

A century and a half later, that unidentified portrait is handed over to Yasmine, a Cairo art historian for preservation. It is through Yasmine's diligent research adventures that the painting's story unfolds, from Zeinab's love for the French painter to their grisly ends: Zeinab at a guillotine as a collaborator after Napoleon leaves and the painter in the agonizing plague that afflicted the French army.

The modern-day life of Yasmine and her long-time suitor Sherif is also told, with a happier (if more ambiguous) ending. Yasmine's suitor has given up a prosperous career as a businessman to convert to Sufism, which is described in some detail. And Yasmine's grandmother reveals dark secrets in the family's past, enabling Yasmine to finally be more open to a suitor's attentions.

Link1: https://www.worldliteraturetoday.org/2021/summer/girl-braided-hair-rasha-adly
Link2: https://hoopoefiction.com/hoopoe-author/rasha-adly/

November 2, 2022


A "beautiful California electric boudoir lamp" advertised in the back pages of a 1923 "Screenland" movie fan magazine (Link1). I placed it over a sample of modern Multicam military camouflage textile pattern.
Truthfully, this seems, to my modern eye, a very scary thing for the first thing you see when you wake up. Like the maniacal and murderous doll in a "Chucky" horror movie.
Link1: https://archive.org/details/ScreenlandDec1923
Link2: https://www.reddit.com/r/RedditCamoThread/comments/n3di8h/multicam_woodland_camouflage_original_by_tounushi/

October 29, 2022


Link1: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theban_alphabet

October 26, 2022


NOTE: Sometimes Bob Moore reviews books written in foreign languages whose translations into English have won prizes. The list of recent translation winners can be seen here. I am grateful to the Free Library of Philadelphia for obtaining the books.
The 2021 prize for translation from Dutch into English went to Jaap Robben's "Summer Brother" (Link1; pictured above from Link2) translated by David Doherty.

It tells the story of a family -- 13-year-old narrator Brian, his 16-year-old deeply disabled brother Lucien, and their grifter father Maurice. As it opens, Brian and Maurice live hard-scrabble in a backwoods trailer park and Lucien lives in an assisted living facility. But the facility needs renovation. and the facility director asks Maurice if the disabled Lucien could spend the summer with his family. The father refuses until he finds out there will be cash reimbursement. This changes his mind.

There are several developments over that Summer. The father disappears for long periods and leaves the difficult care and feeding of Lucien (nonverbal, incontinent and immobile) to Brian. Neighbors in the trailer park squabble over money. And Brian develops a crush on Selma, a 19-year-old mentally-challenged resident of the living facility -- and they go through adventures trying to arrange a moment alone so they can go "belly-to-belly," as Selma puts it. The boys' mother and her new husband appear to complicate things.

Doherty's translation is smooth and unobtrusive, except for occasional Anglicisms he picked up in Scotland before he moved to the Netherlands.

Here is the scene where Brian and Maurice come to visit Lucien in the care facility:

"Ready?" Dad looks at me, one hand on the door handle. "Bry?"

I nod and he throws open the door as briskly as he once pulled milk teeth from my mouth. The closed blinds flap against the open window. Crepe-paper birds on strings dangle from the ceiling. Below them lies Lucien. The thick hair on the back of his head is sticking up, uncombable as ever. From the waist down, he is lying flat on the blanket, but his face and upper body are turned away from us. He's grown closer to the sides of his bed since we saw him last. My brother changes in little things. Thicker eyebrows. Spots along his hairline. Bottom lip sticking out like the rim of holy water basin."

By summer's end, Brian and Lucien have formed a Rain Man-like bond.

At their parting, Brian says to his older brother, "When I'm old enough, you can come and live with me. I promise."

Robben summarized the book to an interview this way: "Summer Brother is the story of two teenage brothers who learn to love each other, although one of them cannot speak and has the inner world of a small child."

Link1: https://www.theguardian.com/books/2021/apr/26/summer-brother-by-jaap-robben-review-empathic-portrait-of-a-dysfunctional-family
Link2: https://omroepvenlo.nl/nieuws/artikel/97008027/jaap-robben-te-gast-bij-start-poezieweek

October 24, 2022


A woman sings in a post-training concert for Russian conscripts before they are dispatched to Ukraine, from the "Moscow Times" (Link1). The background is a collage of various bullets from 4-Chan's "K" Weapons board.
Red-bordered images below were the two originals before they were overlaid.
LINK1: https://www.themoscowtimes.com/2022/10/06/in-photos-russian-conscripts-undergo-basic-training-a79005

October 21, 2022


A colored collage of two black-and-white photographs. They are from a 1978 Romanian book of photographic darkroom techniques, "Developarea" (Link1; trans: 'Darkroom') by Norbert Gopel.
Red-bordered images below were the two originals before they were overlaid.
LINK1: https://archive.org/details/norbert-gopel-developarea

October 17, 2022

Link2: https://toronto.citynews.ca/2018/08/05/surviving-dionne-quintuplet-visits-birth-home-two-decades-away/

October 13, 2022

Experimenting with new technique: a final pass of image produced by my usual techniques (left) through a Photoshop Neural Filter called SuperZoom, which enlarges image so the weird textures of my technique are more visible (right). Shown is 3x zoom.

October 9, 2022


October 7, 2022


October 3, 2022

Again, a meditation in overlapping patterns. Three sources:
  1. In the deep background, a gynecological x-ray from a 1927 book of radiology, "Journal de radiologie et d'électrologie" (Link1; trans: 'Journal of Radiology and Electrology')
  2. At the top, a photo of a part of a restored 1928 'Autocryptograph' machine from a 1984 edition of the journal "Cryptologia" (Link2)
  3. A diagram from the 2004 book "What the Bleep do we know - Quantum Edition" (Link3). The diagram is captioned (translation) 'Regulation of receptors by high peptide levels in the cell environment', and includes the words (translated) 'Increase' and 'Decrease', done here in a font by Indonesian font designer Khurasan called 'Mister October' (Link4)
Link1: https://archive.org/details/journal-de-radiologie-et-delectrologie-11-1
Link2: https://archive.org/details/1984-01-cryptologia
Link3: https://archive.org/details/what-the-bleep-do-we-know-2004-german-quantum-edition-by-artblood
Link4: https://www.dafont.com/mister-october.font

October 1, 2022

Cover of 1910 sheet music for a banjo duet with piano accompaniment written by Parke Hunter called "Tender Glances" (Link1).
Link1: https://archive.org/details/tender-glances-polka-parke-hunter

September 28, 2022

On this Sunday between Summer and Autumn, I experienced the pure joy of combining elements collected in my regular travels (I call them "trawls," after the fisherman's practice of dragging a net along the sea bottom) viewing public domain or old books.

In the foreground of this image is a set of watch-faces and wrist bands displayed in the Portuguese Design Center's undated textbook "do Desenho ao Design" (Link1; trans: 'From Drawing to Design'). That book is also the source of some berries which are barely visible in the frame background.

Two other elements come from a 1980 Russian collection of photographs of minerals, "Los Diamantes Son Preparados Por Los Químicos (Los Científicos A Los Escolares)" (Link2; trans: 'Diamonds Are Prepared By Chemists [Scientists To Schoolchildren]'). Just behind the wrist watches is a diagram showing how scientists calculate the density of dust. Another element is a drawing demonstrating how matter builds up on a crystal, which appears in the frame.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/do-desenho-ao-design
Link2: https://archive.org/details/b.-v.-deriaguin-d.-v.-fedoseev-los-diamantes-son-preparados-por-los-quimicos-los

September 25, 2022

From a discussion on 4-Chan's "K" weapons board, a petulant girl in anime style stands in for Russian president Vladimir Putin (Link1), threatening nuclear war by waving dynamite sticks with lit fuses. I have superimposed her image on a "windrose' -- a chart of how radioactive fallout is affected by wind speed and direction (Link2).

From a recent speech by Ukrainian president Velenskyy (Link3):
"Ukraine guarantees every Russian soldier who surrenders three things. First, you will be treated in a civilized manner, in accordance with all conventions. Second, no one will know the circumstances of your surrender, no one in Russia will know that your surrender was voluntary. And third, if you are afraid to return to Russia and do not want an exchange, we will find a way to ensure this as well."

To resist Putin's latest mobilization, people are pointing to a World War II manual on sabotage techniques.
Link1: https://i.4cdn.org/k/1663916176037783.jpg
Link2: https://boards.4channel.org/k/thread/55295828
Link3: https://www.president.gov.ua/en/news/geroyizm-i-muzhnist-nashih-voyiniv-ne-zalishayut-zhodnih-sum-77997

September 24, 2022

A boy grimaces as he receives a shot of the Salk polio vaccine, from a black-and-white photo illustrating an article on inoculations in a 1955 edition of the popular picture magazine "Look" (Link1). Note the needle circled in red in the lower left corner.

I was about the same age as the boy. I paid no attention to polio, but my mother did and I got the shot. This was during the heyday of the Davy Crockett Disney series and my mind was more on Crockett's signature coonskin cap than on poliomyelitis and its iron lung therapy.

I am entering this image in the Plastic Club's Emotions Through Color online exhibition.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/look-v-19-n-15-1955-07-26-sas

September 21, 2022

A collectible cigarette card from "Bilder Deutscher Geschichte Cigaretten Bilderdienst Olympia" (Link1; trans: 'Pictures of German history Cigaretten Bilderdienst Olympia'), trading cards around the theme of the 1936 Olympics. The caption for this photo is:
"Willie den Ouden, the Dutch record swimmer, [congratulates] the Hungarian [swimmer Ferenc] Csik on his victory in the 100m freestyle swimming."
Look into it -- and it's dark. Tiny, pretty Willie den Ouden was a world record swimmer, with an eye on an acting career. Hungarian swimmer Ferenc Csik was also a champion.. Unfortunately, World War II intervened. Willie's family home and all her medals were destroyed in bombings, her debut movie was cancelled, and she became a refugee, moving through three marriages and several countries. Csik became a doctor and was killed treating the wounded during an air raid. No one does well in wartime -- not even Beauty. Someone published a list of Olympians killed in the war (Link2).
Link1: https://archive.org/details/bilder-deutscher-geschichte-cigaretten-bilderdienst-olympia-1936-band-2
Link2: https://web.archive.org/web/20200417055433/https://www.sports-reference.com/olympics/friv/lists.cgi?id=65

September 17, 2022

Supercharging two black & white illustrations from a 1937 edition of "Le vie del mondo" (Link1; trans: 'The Ways of the World'), an Italian travel and cultural magazine, the successor to the magazine "Le vie d'Italia" mentioned in my 9/11/2022 posting. It shares the high graphic quality of its predecessor. Here is a listing of the six editions of "La vie del mondo" available online.

The first illustration is for an ad for Odol toothpaste, the second is for Campari aperitif.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/2022-09-14-18-11

September 16, 2022


September 15, 2022


The cartoon character in the center is the gentle giant Patoruzo, the last chief of an extinct tribe, created in 1928 by the Argentine cartoonist Dante Quinterno. The image appears in the 1937 edition of "Paturozo" (Link1) children's magazine.

Another element of this image is from a 1967 edition of the Argentine children's magazine "Anteojoto" (Link1; trans: 'Telescope'): over the chief's shoulder is Panconita, the youngest daughter of the cartoon Pancanaro Family, a popular comic in Argentina.

And in the background, from "Patoruzo", is a cartoon cafe scene showing two diners in a contest of wills over who pays the check.

In a good mood because I had my annual checkup at Philadelphia's Wills Eye Hospital and they said my eyes looked good, with possible cataracts way, way down the road.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/patoruzu-n-9-1-junio-1937
Link2: https://archive.org/details/anteojoto-n-150-5-octubre-1967

September 14, 2022


Perhaps too early to crow, but recent losses of territory captured by disorganized Russian army to well-trained and well-armed Ukrainian army may signal the disastrous end of Vladimir Putin's plan to conquer his neighbor.

Above, a Soviet era military wrist watch with a Red Star and a slogan ("Death to Spies"). Nowadays, a collectible, it is being sold on collector's website "Etsy" (Link1).

Next to that, an English translation of instructions distributed by Ukraine telling Russian soldiers (via a QR link) how to surrender. It appeared on 4-Chan's "K" (Weapons) board (Link2).

Let's just hope that a desperate Putin doesn't do anything rash, like using a tactical nuclear weapon or chemical weapons. Even escalating the invasion of Ukraine from a "police action" to formal war with national mobilization could lead to turmoil in Russia.

Link1: https://www.etsy.com/hk-en/listing/1038476118/komandirskie-sovi
Link2: https://www.etsy.com/listing/809024056/sale-steampunk-jewelry-watchs-parts-12?click_key=e64459fd056e54bae0504920bfb92f736b510bb4%3A809024056&click_sum=99923c15&ref=shop_home_active_9
Link3: https://boards.4channel.org/k/thread/55138935

September 12-13, 2022


A digital distortion of a monochrome ad for a Leica camera from a 1935 Italian travel magazine, "Le vie d'Italia" (Link1).

I have found this magazine, nearly a century old, to be a great source. It has good photos and the ink-drawings (like this one) used for ads are excellent. Here is a listing of available issues.

It's not specifically listed as public domain, but I consider the risk of being sued very low. The magazine ceased publication in 1968.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/2022-09-10-17-12

September 11, 2022


Illustrations from 2014 book "Zero to One" (Link1) by computer payment system PayPal's founder Peter Thiel, a right-wing millionaire. Politics aside, Thiel's book designer chose an excellent illustrator, tattooer Matt Buck. The book represents notes from a course Thiel taught at Stanford in 2012.

Figures depicted: lower center, Elon Musk. Over his shoulder Lady Gaga. At top, young Elvis, Michael Jackson, and Britney Spears. Just below that, older Elvis, Jackson, and Spears. At bottom, James Morrison and Janice Joplin.

The background is a pattern of roaches from an advertisement for pesticide 'RAID Ant and Roach Killer' in the 1989 American "Memories" magazine (Link2).

Link1: https://archive.org/details/zero-to-one-book
Link2: https://archive.org/details/memories-1989-08-09-c

September 10, 2022


A 1943 portrait of Queen Elizabeth in her wartime uniform by famed portrait photographer Cecil Beaton. This was before her ascension to the throne upon her father's death in 1952. During the war, she served as driver and mechanic.

My only memory of the Queen was that, during her 1959 visit to Canada, I was among a crowd that waited to wave as her train passed the Belle River, Ontario, train station. I don't approve of monarchy as a political system, but Elizabeth was okay.

Link1: https://assets.catawiki.nl/assets/2019/7/18/b/7/f/b7f37440-dd34-4a00-aca4-dd75040f9075.jpg 

September 8, 2022


Link1: https://archive.org/details/equal-rights-indigenous-people-and-rights-of-minors
Link2: https://archive.org/details/laudelinas-x-25-x-30.5-cm-2
Link3: https://archive.org/details/quietingpractica119bere

September 8, 2022


Three events in the history of the movement of people around North America, from the 1972 book "A Pictorial History Of American Immigration" (Link1). Captions:
Link1: https://archive.org/details/handlin-oscar-a-pictorial-history-of-immigration-america-1972

September 4, 2022


An armed warrior from a recent GK Comics #5 (Link1), overlaid on an image of a dynamo from the 1904 catalog of German technology company Zeiss (Link2).

On my mind because the Ukrainian Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant is the site of battles between Russian and Ukrainian troops, with international inspectors demanding access for safety inspections.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/golden-kamuy-volume-5
Link2: https://archive.org/details/zeiss-works-and-the-carl-zeiss-stiftung-in-jena-1904

September 3, 2022

In early 20th century Europe, there was a tradition of including collectible printed cards with cigarettes, in much the same way baseball cards were included with packages of American chewing gum. Here, from a 1939 German collection of cigarette cards illustrating fairy tales, "Cigaretten Bilderdienst Hamburg: Deutsche Maerchen" (Link1; trans: 'Cigarette picture service Hamburg: German fairy tales') is an illustration for a fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm, #198, 'Jungfrau Maleen' (trans: 'Maid Maleen'). It shows the moment when the prince interrupts the execution of his childhood sweetheart.

Because cigarette (and thus cigarette cards) are so small, I wonder whether the artists used techniques to heighten details. In the detail at right, notice the dark highlighting of the features. It looks like the artist painted first in watercolor and then did details in black ink. Anybody heard of that production technique? I may try it.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/cigaretten-bilderdienst-hamburg-deutsche-maerchen-1939

August 31, 2022

A complicated piece, with five different image sources.

One source is an illustration of an unidentified woman signing, from "اموس الاشارة الموحد للصم", a book of Arabic sign language (Link1; trans: 'Standard Sign Dictionary for the Deaf').

Another image source is from a deep Internet dive into connections between a far-right Catholic cult centered around Marian apparitions in Yugoslavia and America's Qanon political faction. At the bottom of my image is a photo from the book "Big Q Little Q: The Calm Before the Storm" (Link2) written by an anonymous 'Friend of Medjugorje', showing, at bottom left, the pale white statue of Mary of Medjugorje and, at bottom right, Yugoslavia-born Melania Trump visiting the statue.

A third source, at right of center, behind the signing lady, is a graphically bold illustration for an ad for sewing thread, from a Polish fashion magazine"Świat Kobiecya" (Link3; trans: 'Women's World').

Fourth is another page from that Polish women's magazine, displaying women's underwear, and fifth is a collage of military camouflage patterns in small rectangles from 4Chan's "K" (Weapons) board (Link4) .

Link1: https://archive.org/details/20220809_20220809_2347
Link2: https://archive.org/details/big-q-little-q-download-v-4-1
Link3: https://archive.org/details/ndigczas-049902-1930-023
Link4: https://i.4cdn.org/k/1660071839155100.jpg

August 28-29, 2022

Photo accompanying an article about pediatricians in a 1950 "Collier's" (Link1), kids watching television. Caption:
"Convalescent youngsters in the surgical ward of Philadelphia's famed Children's Hospital sit entranced at a television show."

The photographer was Dan Wiener.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/colliers-v-125-n-02-1950-01-14

August 27, 2022

A combination of two images from a 1924 "Argosy All-Story Weekly" (Link1). One is from an ad for an early pressure cooker, the other is a drawing of a woman wearing a fashionable outfit, described as:
"Body of dress fashioned from soft, sheer, genuine Tussah Silk—a most beautiful material. The wide, generous yolk of elegant silk Spanish lace, the rage of the hour! A wide band of this same beauteous lace is also all around the skirt near bottom, At waist is narrow self material girdle, with rich rosette of white lace run through with ribbon drop in contrasting color."
Link1: https://archive.org/details/argosy-v-160-n-02-1924-05-17

August 26, 2022

A tourist photo from a 1916 edition of "Touring Club Italiano" (Link1), a magazine about getting around Europe in the first motorcars. The caption to this photo is: "Una Donna di Bivona con la Quartara" (trans: 'A woman from Bivona with a Quartara').
Link1: https://archive.org/details/2022-08-21-02-12

August 22, 2022

Film still showing emotional scene with Soviet actress Gulya Koroleva, from her 1967 biography "Четвертая Высота" (Link1; trans: 'Fourth Height'). After a short film career, Koroleva was killed in the Battle of Stalingrad.
Link1: https://archive.org/details/1967_20220818

August 21, 2022

DURER: "The Knight, Death and the Devil"
Detail from print by 16th century German artist Albrecht Durer. Did this to enter into an upcoming Plastic Club exhibition which invited artists to create works based on famous artists of the past. Work (Link1) is in public domain now.
Link1: https://www.wikiart.org/en/albrecht-durer/the-knight-death-and-the-devil-1513

August 18, 2022

From a soap advertisement in a 1950 edition of the Uruguayan magazine "Mundo Uruguayo" (Link1; trans: 'Uruguayan World'). The Google-translated text reads:
"The pearly foam of REUTER SOAP cleanses the skin, giving it a velvety softness. Your complexion will glow with everything the charm of youth, thanks to the very fine SOAP OF REUTER, so soft. and intensely perfumed with the legitimate fragrance of natural essences, which accentuate its high quality.

She is posed in front of the abandoned entrance to a pillbox from the Russo-Finish War of 1939 from the 1942 book "Бои в Финляндии: воспоминания участников. Части I и II" (Link2; trans: 'Fights in Finland: memoirs of the participants. Parts I and II')

Link1: https://archive.org/details/MundoUruguayo1632
Link2: https://archive.org/details/boi_v_finlyandii_vospominaniya_uchastnikov/%D0%91%D0%BE%D0%B8%20%D0%B2%20%D0%A4%D0%B8%D0%BD%D0%BB%D1%8F%D0%BD%D0%B4%D0%B8%D0%B8.%20%D0%92%D0%BE%D1%81%D0%BF%D0%BE%D0%BC%D0%B8%D0%BD%D0%B0%D0%BD%D0%B8%D1%8F%20%D1%83%D1%87%D0%B0%D1%81%D1%82%D0%BD%D0%B8%D0%BA%D0%BE%D0%B2%2C%20%D0%A7%D0%B0%D1%81%D1%82%D1%8C%20I/

August 16, 2022

Since the Ukraine war began, I have been following military affairs on 4chan's 'K' (Weapons) board. One of my fascinations is with camouflage patterns. Here is a photograph of soldiers from the Ivory Coast (former French colony in Africa) marching in camouflage fatigues described as "Zebra-like" (Link1) The pattern is black and white, any color was added by my digital transformation.
Link1: https://boards.4channel.org/k/thread/54771388

August 14, 2022

From the cover of a 1930 edition of the Polish women's magazine "Świat Kobiecy" (Link1; trans: 'Women's World'), a drawing of three women. The Google translation of the text follows; note that the picture was flipped horizontally, so read description from left to right:
"3160 Afternoon dress in pastel red crêpe Mongol. The front of the skirt is finely pleated, an original cape finished with a bow, richly decorated with gnziczków [?].
"3161 Afternoon dress with crepe mongol. The sewn skirt creates regular folds. Plastron and cuffs in light green Georgette crepe.
"3162 Elegant afternoon dress made of emerald crêpe de Chine, belt trimmed with white leather. Original neck finish."

The small yellow box at the left bottom originally contained subscription info. I replaced that with a character from the Dingbat font "Egyptian Letters" (Link2) by Ding Bang.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/ndigczas-049902-1930-023/mode/1up?v=
Link2: https://www.dafont.com/egyptian-letters.font

August 12, 2022

From the 1980 Russian "Народный календарь" (Link1; trans: 'Folk Calendar'), an ink drawing of the Goddess of Spring. With my limited Cyrillic, it is not clear who the illustrator is.
Link1: https://archive.org/details/B-001-038-222-ALL/B-001-038-222-03/

August 8, 2022

My new life involves switching between my day urine collection bag (600 mL; or 2.5 cups) and my night urine collection bag (2000 mL; 8.5 cups). This drawing shows a stage in this medical journey. I have to learn new things, develop new routines. I find that, at the age of 77, it takes 30 minutes to a) take a shower and b) switch from the night bag to the day bag. This will remain my routine for the rest of my life, unless my bladder improves.

I did this in the Thursday morning drawing workshop at the Plastic Club, with crayon and marker pens.

Link1: Drawing by Bob Moore

August 6, 2022

From a 1995 "Houston Chronicle" advertisement (Link1), announcement of closing sale at two K-Mart stores, in Houston and Pasadena.
Link1: https://archive.org/details/news-article-houston-chronicle-april-29-1995-p-158/

August 5, 2022

An unusual piece, done at the last minute before Tuesday August 2 Zoom. Three fabric patterns from Sardinia, from a 1923 edition of " Le Vie d'Italia" (Link1), an Italian travel and geographic magazine. (The magazine has high graphic design quality.) Each pattern is colorized digitally, and then combined using letterforms from a new font. "KHScala" (Link2) created by Televolo to duplicate the look of lettering of an online game, 'King of Hearts.'

Color was achieved by robotic algorithm in my last three images (7/30,7/31,8/1) using (1) an autocolor utility in GIMP's G'Mics add-on called Auto Coloring Book by Reptorian and (2) the Colorize and Style Transfer utilities in Photoshop Cloud's Neural Filters package. Of course, I used my natural color eye to adjust those colors.

An additional feature: unlike most of my work, this was done in 300 dots-per-inch instead of my usual 72 dpi.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/2022-07-30-17-42
Link2: https://www.dafont.com/khscala.font

August 1, 2022

Illustration on cover of an undated book of Arabic writings by Egyptian journalist and historian Salah Isa (1939-2017). Isa was a progressive voice in tumultuous Egyptian politics, frequently imprisoned. The artist is not credited. Illustration is black and white, colorization by Bob using various digital tools.
Link1: https://archive.org/details/2_20220716

July 31, 2022

Illustration from an 1887 Spanish work of fiction "Faustina De Bressier" (Link1). The art work was done by an artist named J.Cabrinety. The story takes place in Paris during the Paris Commune.
Link1: https://archive.org/details/faustina-de-bressier-1887

July 30, 2022

A collage in the style of movies, for the 1937 movie "Stage Door", a movie about hopeful actresses living in a theatrical boarding house, with Katherine Hepburn and Ginger Rogers. Taken from the campaign book (i.e. suggestions for theatrical promotion) from RKO, "RKO Radio Is Ready For Your Biggest Show Year" (Link1).
Link1: https://archive.org/details/rko-radio-1937-1938

July 25, 2022


Since so much of my recent work is digital collage, I've been thinking about what it means to collect and assemble different images. Here, for instance, is an old-style collage, like I used to make in the 80's: pictures cut from popular magazine and glued to a backing.

This is an untitled collage by Jardel Oliviera, appearing in a 2022 Portuguese collection of poetry and art "Con Ficcion Amientos." (Link1: trans 'With Fictional Stories'). The collection is subtited "Coltivo de inenção tá a ars am tampos pandâmics," which roughly translates to 'Collection of work from a time of pandemic'.

Does the collage make straight-line literal sense? No. Is it pleasing? Yes. Does my idiosyncratic digital treatment (click on the picture once or twice to zoom in and view the texture and details) improve it? Perhaps.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/conficcionamientos

July 24, 2022


Sometimes I feel like I'm sitting in the control room of my body (the head), and the world outside is a confusing blur.

The main photo is a picture from a 4Chan.org "Weapons" (/k) board thread asking folks to send in ‘Cool War Pictures from Any Time'. Someone sent in this picture (Link1), an interior shot of the cockpit of a Mitsubishi G4M ("Betty") light bomber. I like the composition and the crew's calm. Here's another discussion of this photo of Betty's cockpit:

"One of the most famous cockpit photos of the Betty from a vintage publication, a very rare one taken at a time when the Army and Navy issued strict orders not to take photos of sensitive aircraft areas.

"...The guy sitting on the foreground on the right is the plane commander, the one in front of him is the pilot. The one on the left side with the binoculars is the observer while the one sitting in front of him is the co-pilot.

"A number of interesting details are visible in this photo. Notice that none of the crew members wears a parachute (at least I can't see one)...

"Finally notice the absolute lack of any form of armour protection giving the impression of a civilian passenger plane. Unless someone considers as protection the shades on the canopy..."

I have cut out the windows from that photo and displayed in them the wild creatures that trouble the boy's dreams in famed children's artist Maurice Sendak's book, "Where the Wild Things Are." They were turned into a video in 2002 (Link2) by the Vista Group.

Music in the background is from a compilation of pieces honoring this year's "Netlabel Day"; the song is 'Logos' by Illit and Marcelo Diaz (Link3).

It's been a long time since I did a video. Not for any conscious reason, but because my expensive Adobe Photoshop Cloud subscription disabled the ability to read MP4 files (without any announcement), and then (also without any announcement) re-enabled it. I'm glad that I can go back to doing videos, with music, although this first one is not among my best.
Link1: boards.4channel.org/k/thread/54458127
Link2: archive.org/details/TheVistaGroup-WhereTheWildThingsAre
Link3: archive.org/details/slc72.netlabel_day_2022-soisloscerdos_mini_compilation

July 23, 2022


The overall surrealistic gear shape comes from a mold used to shape propellant mixtures, created by a European chemical conglomerate, mentioned in a 1988 issue of the Spanish aviation magazine "Aeroespacio" (Link1).

The positive and negative surfaces of the gear-like image are filled with two different military camouflage patterns, from a discussion on the 4Chan "Weapons" board of camouflage patterns. (Link2) The backmost pattern has its colors reversed to be blue-ish.

The pictogram on top of the positive gears is "The Grinning Face" emoji, from the 'Twemoji' set created on Twitter (Link3). Like clowns, I find emojis meant to be happy to be scary.

Deep in the background is a barely-visible photo of a jet engine on a hoist, also from the Spanish aviation magazine "Aeroespacio" (Link1).

Link1: https://archive.org/details/aeroespacio-461-ene-feb-1988
Link2: https://boards.4channel.org/k/thread/54467200
Link3: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emoji#/media/File:Twemoji_1f600.svg

July 21, 2022

In the center, two intertwined characters from the popular Spy vs. Spy comic, created by Cuban refugee Antonio Prohias, which ran in the American "Mad Magazine" for years. This version is from a 2004 stencil for Halloween pumpkins (Link1).

That figure is set against a 1957 drawing (Link2) of an electrical transformer for a Lionel HO train set.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/mad_SPY_vs_SPY_pumpkin_stencil_2004.
Link2: https://archive.org/details/lionel-dc-power-units-for-ho-trains-01

July 18, 2022

The government banned Polygamy in 1880, and many Mormons were arrested and sentenced to terms (usually six months) in Utah state prisons. Here is a photo of some of them from a 1979 "Utah Historical Quarterly" article (Link1). The caption reads: "Clean-shaven prisoners sporting a variety of hat styles lined up for photographer Charles R. Savage at territorial penitentiary under eyes of armed guard on wall."
Link1: https://archive.org/details/uhq_volume47_1979_number1

July 17, 2022

A photo from the 1977 Russian medical text "Sex Marriage Family" (Link1).

Had a lot of technical problems with this one because there was little detail in the shaded side of the girl's face. But I like the innocent look of it.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/1977_20220714.

July 16, 2022

My familiar refrain: no matter how bad your physical or mental state is right now, it would get a lot worse if you fall, break a bone, and have to stay in bed for a couple months. Just.Dont.Fall !!

The stairway photo is by Ana Pobo. It appears in an issue of "Letras Salvajes" (Link1; trans: 'Wild Letters'), a Puerto Rican review of art and literature.

The font is "Rusty Fever" (Link1) a new font by designer group 'Fonts and Fashion'.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/ls_29
Link2: https://www.fontsandfashion.com/

July 14, 2022

Another stream of visual connection piece, various visual elements gathered in my daily "trawl" of uploads to the Community Texts collection of the Internet Archive. Three elements to this one:
  1. A sexy woman in a robe, detail eliminated and filled with white, from an advertisement for book called 'The Pleasure Primer' advertised in a 1954 issue of "Famous Detective Stories" (Link1).
  2. Photograph of a sculpture called "Cobblestone: The Weapon of the Proletariat" appearing in a 1988 Russian education book "Изложение С Языковым Разбором Текста" (Link2; trans: 'Presentation With Language Parsing of the Text').
  3. A photograph of a stalk of corn (or maize) from the 2010 "A Poetics of Resistance: The Revolutionary Public Relations of the Zapatista Insurgency" (Link3). The book analyzes the communication techniques of the Zapatista Uprising, called "The First Postmodern Revolution."
Link1: https://archive.org/details/famous-detective-stories-june-1954.
Link2: https://archive.org/details/1988_20220709
Link3: https://archive.org/details/apoeticsof-resistance-the-revolutionary-public-relationsofthe-zapatista-insurgency

July 12-13, 2022

A stream of visual attention collage.

Background is a 1717 architect's plan for Petersburg from the 1989 Russian "История Градо Строительного Искусства Поздний Феодализм И Капитализм" (Link1; trans: 'A History of Urban Building Art Late Feudalism and Capitalism').

On top of that, two images from the 1969 Russian "Исследование Пищеварительного Аппарата У Человека" (Link2; trans: 'Study of the Digestive Apparatus in Man'). One shows views of the small intestine with and without nutrients, and the other shows laboratory "apparatus for the simultaneous receipt of the same gastric and duodenal contents."

A very complicated piece; in the course of work, some of the colors in the layers have gotten out of line.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/1989_20220709
Link2: https://archive.org/details/1969_20220709

July 10, 2022

At top, two photos from the 1989 edition of "British Paratroopers in Action" (Link1). Left photo shows drill instructors training recruits in the proper exiting of an early WW2 bomber; right photo shows troops crowded together on an early glider.

Below that, the eyes of a young Mexican girl from the 2010 "A Poetics of Resistance: The Revolutionary Public Relations of the Zapatista Insurgency" (Link2)

Link1: https://archive.org/details/squadron-signal-3009-british-paratroopers-in-actio
Link2: https://archive.org/details/apoeticsof-resistance-the-revolutionary-public-relationsofthe-zapatista-insurgency

July 9, 2022

A photo from the 1957 edition of "The Scarab" (Link1), the high school yearbook of Benton High School of Benton, Illinois, showing the school band.

I consider this a companion piece to my e 23 football image. Not going for surprise or beauty, but just utterly ordinary images that say "This happened -- and I was around to see it."

Link1: https://archive.org/details/1957-bchs-yearbook

July 7, 2022

Bibliographic and source material not available because of disk error. Visual stream of sight and shape.

July 4, 2022


A group of four armed Christo-fascist Nationalist "Legionarios" roust a terrified farm family searching for weapons in 1936, in the Basque town of Irun. Fascist movements tend to attract small-town bullies, for the chance it gives them to push everybody else around. Note the soldier on the right with his hand in the farmer's pocket.

History is confusing. The Republicans in the Spanish Civil War were the good guys, just like the Republicans in American politics leading up to the American Civil War. It is only recently that the Republican label has come to stand for the most regressive, cruel, and anti-democratic policies.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/war-monthly-issue-030

July 3, 2022


Most of us are familiar with the story of Eve, tempted by the serpent, convincing Adam to join her in eating the forbidden fruit. Here is a statue depicting that event from the 5th Century Cathedral of Reims. Several departures from the modern story: Eve is dressed in modern clothes and the tempter is a small dragon, reminiscent of Daenerys Targarian in the modern Game of Thrones. The picture on the left is from the 1958 history book "Histoire 4e, Cours J. Isaac" (Link1; trans: 'History 4th, Cours J. Isaac'). The picture of the same statue on the right is from Twitter (Link2). Both pictures are laid over a skillful engraving or woodblock referenced in a discussion on Quora (Link3). barely visible.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/histoire-4e-cours-j.-isaac
Link2: https://twitter.com/ancienteurope/status/1055095364351676417
Link3: https://www.quora.com/Who-or-what-exactly-is-the-serpent-depicted-in-the-Bible-This-serpent-is-clearly-a-snake-of-some-sort-and-can-have-offspring-and-talk

July 2, 2022


Early in his career, my father worked as a draftsman (on blueprints for a gas station in Michigan) and I developed an early interest in what was called Mechanical Drawing. Here, an illustration from a 1977 Romanian textbook "Desen tehnic industrial: pentru secțiile de subingineri" (Link1; trans: 'Industrial technical drawing: for sub-engineering sections'). I love the clarity of line. Of course, heavy digital distortion of the precise original.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/desem_202206/

June 30, 2022


A photograph of painted models about 2 1/8 inches wide, from an undated magazine "Scale Modelling Handbook" (Link1). The figures depict an English boarding party at the Siege of Badajoz, a bloody battle in Spain, part of the global conflict known in U.S. as the War of 1812 and in Spain and Portugal as the Peninsular War. The model was built and painted by Bill Horan with enamels.

The blue smoke in the background is a digital alteration of a religious image from an undated Romanian religious book, "Predici la Duminica Pogorârii Sfântului Duh (Cinzecimea, Rusaliile sau Paştile de foc)" (Link2: 'Sermons on the Sunday of the Descent of the Holy Spirit (Pentecost, Pentecost, or Passover)').

Link1: https://archive.org/details/scale-modelling-handbook-013-building-and-painting.
Link2: https://archive.org/details/9.-dum.-sf.-duh

June 28, 2022


According to the Washington Post, the Russian Army is shooting 60,000 shells a day at Ukrainian troops and cities. .


June 26, 2022


A photo from the 1954 "Street & Smith's College Football Preview." The equipment, especially the helmet, are outdated. The caption reads:

"GEORGE GALUSKA, Wyoming fullback, cracks Denver line for 8-yard-gain as teams play 13-13 tie. Bugs Carter (85), Cowboy end, hastens to block out Jim Bowen (left), Denver back 05 Martin Hicks (right) gets set to tackle."
Denver ended up winning the 1954 conference championship.
Link1: https://archive.org/details/street-smith-1954-college-football-yearbook-c/.

June 23, 2022


From a nostalgic thread on the Reddit "K" Weapons board, imagining plane designs that could have been but never were. A photograph of the 1929 Junkers G38. Notice how large the wings are. The engines were enclosed in the wing, along with passengers. The explanatory text: "You'll never service a plane engine from inside the wing during flight with your old gray haired mechanic senpai [master]... .Why even live?"

In the background is a pattern from a 1979 book of anime (Link2)

A diagram of the G38's innovative wing design is at Link3.

Link1: https://boards.4channel.org/k/thread/54099927
Link2: https://archive.org/details/animage-1979-v-008-february.
Link3: https://books.google.com/books?id=QuIDAAAAMBAJ&pg=RA1-PA72&dq=Popular+Mechanics+1931+curtiss&hl=en&ei=Nij_TMTzG43InAeavtDBCw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=3&ved=0CCkQ6AEwAjgK#v=onepage&q=Popular%20Mechanics%201931%20curtiss&f=true

June 22, 2022


Pure pattern. Foreground is "Retrospection," a Dingbat Font from Studio369 (Link1). It is a steganographic font. Background is the riding silks from the 2019 Kentucky Derby (Link2).

Link1: https://www.dafont.com/retrospection.font
Link2: https://archive.org/details/silks_rtkd_silks_distribute_4-24-19

June 19, 2022


At her work desk, Spanish surrealist artist Remedios Varo working. The photo is undated. Inset in upper left is her 1959 painting "Presencia Inquietante" (Link1; trans: 'Haunting Presence'). Original here. The painting shows the artist at work in a high-backed chair; but inside the chair is an evil imp distracting her by licking her neck. She died in Mexico in 1963.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/cartas-suenos-y-otros-textos-varo-remedios-z-lib.org

June 19, 2022


One, in the center, chin resting on hand before a friendly cup of coffee, is a cartoon character in Neil Gaiman's masterful comic/fantasy series "Sandman". Her name is Death, and she is the opposite of previous depictions of death. As Wikipedia explains:

"Death instead appears as an attractive, pale goth girl dressed in casual clothes — often a black top and jeans. She also wears a silver ankh on a chain around her neck, and has a marking similar to the eye of Horus around her right eye. She is pleasant, down-to-earth, perky, and has been a nurturing figure for both incarnations of [Sandman]. This irony has helped make Death one of the most popular characters from [the series]. "

In the background is actress Jennifer Connelly, when she was just 21, during a photo shoot posing with her reflection before a full-length mirror, dressed in nothing but a thong (Link2). Connelly, a beauty to my Boomer generation, is now 52 and has aged gracefully. She is married to actor Paul Bettany.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/B-001-038-072-ALL
Link2: https://i.redd.it/yr3h3feqbe591.jpg

June 16, 2022


Illustration used as two-page inside cover for a 1989 book of high-school readings, Избранное (Link1; trans: "Favorites"). Scene depicts three soldiers in lower left, a steaming locomotive in center, and a train station at right.

The rectangle in lower right was used for Cyrillic text; I filled it with background brown and superimposed my logo/brand. Later, at a friend's suggestion, I re-did it so that my logo does not cover the image area, although I had to fake the original woodcut or linoleum block style in the rectangle.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/B-001-038-072-ALL

June 11, 2022

Illustration by Rico Tomaso for a serialized story "Too Many Cooks" by Rex Stout in a 1938 issue of "American Magazine" (Link1). The magazine was published (by various owners) between 1906 and 1956.
Link1: https://archive.org/details/TheAmericanMagazineV126N01193807

June 11, 2022

Overall picture and illustrations of parts for 1911 Stanley Steamer motor car (Link1). A Stanley Steamer set the record for the fastest mile in an automobile in 1906. Shown is the five-passenger touring car, sold for $1,500.

I'm reminded of the car because I got an Uber ride in a Tesla M3 -- hot car of the moment -- today. Sells for $45,000.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/stanley-steam-cars-1911

June 10, 2022

Image from the 1973 Russian fairy tale "Кровь Людская Не Водица" (Link1; trans: 'Human Blood is not Water').

Dingbat (representing Bearded Bob offering a flower) from recent Spanish designer Woodcutter's font "DrawnX" (Link2)

Link1: https://archive.org/details/1973_20220604
Link2: https://www.dafont.com/woodcutter-s-drawnx.font

June 7, 2022

Photo from 1947 Russian book "Судебная Медицина" (Link1; trans: 'Forensic Medicine') showing the effect of a gun shot wound to the right temple at close range. The book was a textbook for law schools.

June 5, 2022

From the 4-chan weapons board, an unidentified aerial photo from the Ukraine war, apparently showing a ruined Russian tank rusting in the swirling waters of a Ukrainian river. Russian river crossings have been a disaster in the war.
Link1: https://boards.4channel.org/k/thread/53847387

June 4, 2022

Images from November 2019 survey of Internet, downloaded with some difficulty from Google Cloud storage. Betrayed once again by a big computer monopoly.

Background is a 1970 Polaroid photo by Daniel Boudinet, used as a frontispiece in a 2015 Arabic translation of Roland Barthes' "The Light Room" (Link1)

On top of that, an early 18th century tempera painting by Italian sculptor Antonio Canova of three dancing girls (Link2)

Foreground is a rendering of a flowering plant (Leptolaena multiflora) found only in Madagascar, from the 1806 "Histoire des végétaux recueilles dans les isles australes d'Afrique" (Link3; trans: 'History of the plants collected in the southern islands of Africa') .

Link1: https://archive.org/details/20191110_20191110_0728
Link2: https://www.museocanova.it/le-danzatrici-di-canova-a-tempera-4.
Link3: https://archive.org/details/CAT11024889

June 1-3, 2022

Combination of snapshots taken on a trip to Michigan's lovely upper peninsula in 2018.
Link1: Photos by Bob Moore

May 30, 2022

Combination of images taken walking around city. White spray paint and pavement.
Link1: Photos by Bob Moore

May 30, 2022

TRIGGER WARNING: Male Genitals Smart-phone camera view of my legs and torso as I awoke from surgery. Three-pronged catheter visible near center, draining fluids from my poor, misused penis (bottom center, magenta; now festooned in gauze strip bunting). Fluids then drip through transparent tubes, over the bedside to a collection bag. Open-backed hospital gown on lower right, orange hospital socks at top left.

Next, my understanding of the anatomy issues involved. Urine flows through a channel in the prostate gland. When prostate enlarges, urine flow is reduced. The wings have nothing to do with the subject, they're just there for decorative purposes.

Link1: Photo & graphic by Bob Moore

May 29-30, 2022

A drawing showing bodily pressure points, from the 1999 "The Art Of Shen Ku: The First Intergalactic Artform Of The Entire Universe" (Link1). The lavishly illustrated book contains a lot of New Age and survivalist material gathered by a psuedonymous 'Zeek.'

As I recover from my surgery, I measure my progress on a gradient between red and yellow in the liquid collected in my out-of-body catheter drainage bag. Red is blood, from the damage done by surgery, and yellow is urine. As I recover from the surgery, the yellow is becoming more and more prominent. I used a red-to-yellow gradient on top of this piece.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/the-art-of-shen-ku-the-first-intergalactic-artform-of-the-entire-universe-pdfdrive/

May 22, 2022

Illustration from an undated but recent booklet by two Polish psychologists about the treatment of patients who have suffered trauma, "Broszura Trauma" (Link1; trans: 'Trauma Brochure') showing a girl sitting moodily at a kitchen table. The image is "clip art" produced by English photographer Cathy Sinker (Link2).
Link1: https://archive.org/details/broszura_trauma
Link2: https://cathysinker.co.uk/

May 18, 2022

Experimenting with a new Photo Editing program, Affinity Photo, which may allow me to escape the expensive Adobe Photoshop contract with its buggy updating program. The program is having a Spring sale, half-off, or $27. Used it to create this image.

May 16, 2022

A digital assemblage consisting of three parts:
Link1: https://archive.org/details/convorbiri-literare-anul-lxxvii-nr.-3-martie-1944
Link2: https://archive.org/details/enciclopedia-de-plantas-que-curan-018-ediliba-1987
Link3: https://archive.org/details/carlisle-clover-club-1916-1917

May 14, 2022

An assemblage of black & white photos from the 1975 Russian "Вечным Сынам Отчизны" (Link1: trans; 'Eternal Sons of the Fatherland'), commemorating Russian casualties in the victory over Germany in World War 2. What's tragic is that Russia and Ukraine were on the same side in that war, and this year Russia has invaded Ukraine and is bombing the helpless population.

As Russian propaganda, the book is large and photographs are high-resolution. Worth taking a look at. I was attracted to a particular form of statues/monuments that were made with concrete.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/1975_20220509

May 11, 2022


May 10, 2022


May 6, 2022


April 27, 2022


I have switched from making the frame 10% of original to 20%. In other words, if width is 2000 pixels, I make height 140% (instead of 120%). I like the look in the frames. Used the 20%/large frame in last two images.

The background/overlaid pattern is a decorative rooster motif used on the cover of a 1990 Russian first-grade reading textbook "Русский Язык. Учебник Для 1 Класса" (Link1: trans: 'Russian LanguageTextbook For 1st Class').

The images of children jumping/skipping rope are from the 1969 Russian children's picture book "Веревочка" (Link2: trans: 'Rope').

It is purely a coincidence that I have been using Russian images a lot lately. Basically, I want to separate myself from today's widespread hatred of Russians because of the atrocities of Putin's troops and mercenaries in Ukraine. Japan committed horrible atrocities during World II in China, but it was a matter of ideology (militarism, emperor worship, racism) and when the ideology was ended, Japan rejoined the world of civilized states contributing to world culture. When the sickness of Putin's kleptocratic dictatorship ends, Russia will once again rejoin the civilized world, the home of Tchaikovsky and Tolstoy.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/1-.-.-.-1990
Link2: https://archive.org/details/1969_20220422

April 24, 2022


A digital assemblage -- my new term -- from five elements. Busy-ness and texture are part of my style, but this may be too busy, I'm not sure.

Background image is a brothel party scene of top-hatted men and fashionable women, from the 1909 French "Maisons De Plaisir Et Distractions Parisiennes" (Link1; trans: 'Houses Of Pleasure And Parisian Distractions'). The image is blue because colors have been inverted.

Superimposed on that are two copies of a photograph of a falling and breaking wine glass, used to demonstrate the relative elasticity of materials, from the 2000 Lithuanian "Mokslas: mokyklinė enciklopedija: 2000 svarbiausių temų apie mokslą" (Link2: trans: 'Science: A school encyclopedia: 2000 major topics about science').

There are also two images from the 1993 Mexican "Puros Cuentos. Historia de la historieta en México 1934-1950" (Link3; trans: ''Pure Tales. History of the comic strip in Mexico 1934-1950'). The first image is the startled woman in the center, from the undated cover of a Mexican magazine, captioned "Socorro! Bandidos!" (trans: 'Help! Bandits!). Another image, duplicated at the bottom corners, is a cartoonish maid looking on disapprovingly (source unknown).

Last image is a photograph from a Chinese trade catalog, showing rubber silicon seals, running top-to-bottom in the center of the image. (Link4)

Link1: https://archive.org/details/maisons-de-plaisir-et-distractions-parisiennes
Link2: https://archive.org/details/ardley.-.-mokykline.enciklopedija..-2001
Link3: https://archive.org/details/puroscuentoshistoriahistorietamexico
Link4: https://archive.org/details/silicone-rubber-seals

April 22, 2022


A colorizing digital treatment of an old black & white photo.

Sometime in Europe after the carnage of World War II, a group of teenage scouts (The Union of Polish Youth) work together to repair bombed buildings in Warsaw. The girls form a human chain to hand-carry street rubble, the boys (in the background) use pick-axes to take apart collapsing walls. The image appears in a Lithuanian translation of Anne Applebaum's 2013 book "Geležinė uždanga: Rytų Europos sugniuždymas, 1944-1956" (Link1: trans: 'The Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe, 1944-1956')

I look forward to the time Putin is gone and the people of Europe (even Russia) will pitch in to repair the physical damage from Putin's desperate bombing of cities.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/applebaum.-.-gelezine.uzdanga.-2013.-lt

April 21, 2022


A religious chant I wrote years ago, meant to be sung on Good Friday from 3 PM to 5 PM, which was the supposed time of Christ's crucifixion in the Catholic Church where I was raised. It was customary for the devout to "keep the silence" during those hours.

In a secular version, the song is the same except, at the end, the names of all the people who have died in the last year are read.

The words are below. The intention is for maximum vocal improvisation in the long 'e' in Keeeeep. "Oncha" is a contraction for "Won't you".

Keeeeep the Silence
'Oncha Keeeeeep the Silence
'Oncha Keeeeeep the Silence
'Cuz A Man Dies Young
Da-da dada duh

The devotion required participants to vividly imagine Jesus' suffering. It was part of the church's Stations of the Cross tradition. One year, as an altar boy, I carried a cross in the procession from station-to-station.

April 20, 2022


A composite ("digital assemblage") of three images.

In the deep background, under a camouflage net, two soldiers in gas masks service a guided missile (bottom right to top left) from a 1965 issue of the East German soldier's magazine "Armee-Rundschau" (Link1; trans: 'Army Review').

Next, bottom, three puppet figures created by the Russian artist and puppet designer Nina Simonovich-Efimova from her 1982 memoir "Notes of the Artist" (Link2).

Behind the puppets, a display of crystal/glass work from the 1922 "The Glass and Mosaic Industries of Venice" (Link3).

Link1: https://archive.org/details/ar-1965-01
Link2: https://archive.org/details/1982_20220416
Link3: https://archive.org/details/glass-and-mosaic-industries

April 18-19, 2022


An artistic experiment, combining two digitally adjusted technical illustrations from the 2006 book "Broadband Planar Antennas: Design and Application" (Link1). A planar antenna is "a directional antenna in which all the elements are in one plane".

At the four corners are segments of the universal symbol for "Biohazard", from a dingbat font by the Spanish type designer "Woodcutter" Manero (Link2). For background on the Biohazard symbol, see Link3.

All the elements of this image were originally black-and-white. The colors were added by computer, specifically a utility in the Gimp G'Mics filter package: Testing, called "Autofill Coloring Book;" and some style transformations in Dreamscope.

I intend to enter this in piece in the Plastic Club's Member's Medal show. It is either a sign of continuing improvement or appalling confusion that I usually enter my latest work into this show, which is intended to highlight the best work the member has done all year.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/broadband-planar-antennas-design-and-application
Link2: https://www.dafont.com/laboratory.font?sort=date
Link3: https://99percentinvisible.org/article/biohazard-symbol-designed-to-be-memorable-but-meaningless/

April 16, 2022


Two illustrations for Regina brand cigarettes, appearing in the 1934 "Le vie d'Italia" magazine (Link1; trans: 'Life in Italy').

The background is a popular military camouflage called MultiCam (Link2). The image appeared on 4-Chan's "K (weapons)" bulletin board.

"MultiCam has a background of a brown to light tan gradient, overprinted with a dark green, olive green, and lime green gradient and a top layer of opaque dark brown and cream-colored shapes spread throughout the pattern. This allows for the overall appearance to change from predominantly green to predominantly brown in different areas of the fabric, while having smaller shapes to break up the larger background areas. The MultiCam color scheme in Hex triplet is as follows:(i) Cream 524 B8A78B; (ii) Dark Brown 530 48352F; (iii) Tan 525 967860; (iv) Brown 529 6F573F; (v) Dark Green 528 5A613F; (vi) Olive 527 8C7D50; and (vii) Pale Green 526 85755C."
Link1: https://archive.org/details/2022-04-13-02-35
Link2: https://i.4cdn.org/k/1649979299099.png

April 15, 2022


Another in my series of postcards reminding my friends, family and neighbors Not To Fall. The last one was January 31. The message, as I said then: "Nothing can destroy your quality of life more quickly than a broken bone from a moment's slip on the snow or stumble on a stairway." I am usually inspired to do one of these when I come across an attractive stairway, as above.

The image is taken from Ernst Gombrich's revised 1950 "History of Art." translated into Spanish. (Link1) It shows an 1893 staircase from the Hotel Tassel in Brussels designed by Victor Horta.

Link1: https://archive.org/details/GombrichErnstHHistoriaDelArte

April 15, 2022


April 11, 2022


April 10, 2022

A 15-inch wooden model of a 1937 Pontiac appeared in a 1994 edition of "Woodworker's Journal" (Link1). The background is composed of various diagrams showing construction details, digitally altered. The foreground is two copies of the completed model, at different scales, overlapping.

Behind the car is a chart showing the uniforms of the Aztec army at the time of their conquest by Cortes from the 2007 Lithuanian "Žymiausios visų laikų kelionės" (Link2: trans: 'The most famous trips of all time').

Link1: https://archive.org/details/wood-workers-journal-nov-dec-1994
Link2: https://archive.org/details/zymiausios.visu.laiku.keliones.-2007.-lt

April 10, 2022

Photo of Janice and her visiting friend Anne. Anne brought flowers for our friend Ted's opening.

April 9 2022

The cover of a 1931 German electronics magazine, "Funkschau" (Link1), showing an American radio transmitter with water carried through spiral pipes to cool it.

Second version includes a cartoon from the 1974 "Co-Evolution Quarterly" (Link2) showing a black dog and a white dog chasing each other, ouroboros-style.

Undecided on whether to include the ironic black-and-white pop element in my work as a signature. The first image has a good texture, but is it enough?

Link1: https://archive.org/details/funkschau-1931-heft-39
Link2: https://archive.org/details/issue01_202204/page/10/mode/1up

April 7, 2022


Point one: Russian aggression in the Ukraine is NOT the number one problem facing the world. Climate change is. And Putin's warlord dictator childishness is just distracting us all from dealing with climate issues.

Point two: Climate change -- melting ice in the Arctic -- will help out Putin's dream of a revived Russian empire. His Northern Sea Route would allow Russia to ship oil directly to China -- without using dollars. (See the orange and white dashed line on the right of the map above, from Link1; click on map to enlarge.) Global sea traffic could bypass the Suez Canal. Normally I would shrug this off as normal technological innovation and economic competition, but having witnessed Russian brutality in Ukraine, I don't feel any obligation to play fair. I would like the United States and other countries involved in the Northern Sea Route to resist this development using all the Putinesque tactics of transparent lies, mass media misinformation, strained legalisms -- even military force.

A busy Northern Sea Route would also give the U.S. a new Northern neighbor. I love Canada as friendly neighbor along our shared 5,000 mile border. My family spent summers in Canada and as a boy the Canadian/U.S. border was lightly policed, you just needed a drivers license to cross. But I am not at all happy with the prospect of Putin-era Russia with its rapacious conscript army as a Northern neighbor.

Here is a recent (April 3) video press release by the Russian state atomic energy company Rosatom about an Arctic voyage of a nuclear-powered icebreaker (Link2):

For a more military view of Arctic developments see The War Zone. And here is a recent (April 5) report on Canadian arctic defense.

Link1: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northern_Sea_Route
Link2: https://twitter.com/Russia

April 4, 2022


April 3, 2022


A cartoon figure showing a a young Ukrainian soldier holding a Javelin anti-tank guided missile launcher and an automatic rifle (Link1), originally taken from 4-chan's "K" (Weapons) board. Gender can not be determined from the drawing, but from the context of anime big-eyed imagery and the religious icons of that region showing Mary, the mother of Jesus, it is a young female warrior. Artist is not identified.

Link1: i.pinimg.com/originals/f0/14/fc/f014fc82808ef478aaf48d78c929f8e9.jpg

April 1, 2022


March 31, 2022


March 29, 2022


A digitally-altered 2002 photo by Parisian photographer Guy Lequerrec showing a model studying her three reflections in two mirrors, from a Chinese magazine called "张悦然:鲤·系列" (Link1; trans: 'Zhang Yueran: Carp Series').

Balancing in the upper right corner, a photograph of a nude woman posing next to a brass gong, from the 1934 pulp magazine "Spicy Stories" (Link2)

Link1: https://archive.org/details/20220320_20220320_1719/%E5%BC%A0%E6%82%A6%E7%84%B6%EF%BC%9A%E9%B2%A4%C2%B7%E5%8F%98%E8%80%81
Link2: https://archive.org/details/spicy-stories-september-1934

March 27, 2022


Central image is a skeleton, an old (11th? 16th? century) engraving, from a 1994 Russian book "Философия смерти" (Link1; trans: 'The Philosophy of Death'); the accompanying text reads: "German engraving of the 11th century, symbolically representing death. In the hands of death is a coffin with a funeral stretcher and an hourglass, a symbol of the strictness of the life span allotted to a person."

Behind that is a collage consisting of (a) a decorative ceiling appearing in a 1996 catalog of the period rooms at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art (Link2); (b) a display of coins from the 1911 French travel book "Du Khorassan au pays des Backhtiaris, trois mois de voyage en Persez" (Link3; trans: 'From Khorassan to the land of the Backhtiaris, three months of travel in Persia'); and (c) a drawing of a milling machine from a 1958 textbook "Ball Tube and Rod Mills" (Link4)

Below and to the left of the skeleton engraving is a photograph of a nude woman seated in a window, from the 1934 pulp magazine "Spicy Stories" (Link5)

Also, above and below the skeleton engraving are copies of a diagram showing old-fashioned iron rifle sights, from an online discussion in 4chan's "K" (Weapons) board, about their usefulness in combat (Link6).

Link1: https://archive.org/details/B-001-037-207-ALL
Link2: https://archive.org/details/p15324coll10_96980
Link3: https://archive.org/details/gri_33125014240549
Link4: https://archive.org/details/ball-tube-and-rod-mills-rose-and-sullivan-2/
Link5: https://archive.org/details/spicy-stories-september-1934
Link6: https://boards.4channel.org/k/thread/52575530

March 25, 2022

Illustration by Hungarian hyperrealist Etienne Sandorfi for an article by medical conspiracy theorist Gary Null entitled "You Are the Victim" which ran in the 1987 "Penthouse" magazine (Link1)
Link1: https://archive.org/details/penthouse-1987-10-b

March 22, 2022


I have resolved to work more on my writing than on my art. As I near the end of my days, there's a few things I want to get down. Expand text, reduce complexity of image.

This 77-year-old man is having prostate problems. A young man's prostate is about 22 cubic centimeters in volume. The ultrasound shows that my current prostaste is 90 cc. As a result of this enlargement, I have not been able to pee freely since January 6 and I wear a urinary catheter (an external bladder), with associated practical problems. Actually, I switch between two catheters: a 2000-cc night catheter and a 1000-cc day catheter.

I am getting decent care -- two ambulance trips, frequent visits from a home healthcare nurse, appointments at the urology department of HUP, and visits with my expensive local concierge doctor.

The only thing that bothers me is the incredibly slow progress of my treatment. It looks like it will be Spring before I will be able to return to normal peeing-- if I ever will. The catheterization also means I am not able to masturbate or have sex.

At my last Plastic Club live artist's workshop, I did a drawing (See above) about my woes, using ink and crayon , intended to honor the spirit of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo's paintings about her painful back injury, The figure on the left shows me with the enlarged prostate, the figure on the right shows me with a catheter. At top, the view from the emergency room window as I lay sleepless on the first night.

March 20, 2022


I have resolved to work more on my writing than on my art. As I near the end of my days, there's a few things I want to get down. Expand text, reduce complexity of image.

First, let me address some issues raised by the Ukrainian war, which I am following obsessively -- four hours a day:

(1) Thirty years ago, United States Secretary of State James Baker assured Russian diplomats that the U.S. would never let Ukraine into NATO -- but the then U.S. president at the time (G.H.W. Bush) went back on the deal. (Footnote1; see March 14 entry) This is horrendous foreign policy practice on the U.S. side. This doesn't excuse Russia's brutal invasion, but it may provide a chance for the U.S. to offer Russia an "exit ramp" for Putin's disastrous policy. ("American and Russian diplomats had a misunderstanding on Ukraine, we understand that. And Ukraine did not have a seat at the table. Can we help Putin and Zelensky come to some agreement for an immediate cease-fire -- maybe no entrance to NATO for ten years or until the Russian Federal Assembly [Russian Congress] revokes this condition, and then only after a free election supervised by UN. Meanwhile, Russia goes back to its 2013 borders and works (as neighbors) with Ukraine on repairing the physical and spiritual damage caused by the warfare.").

And let this count forever as a black mark on the record of Republican President Bush. You fucked up bad and brought us to the brink of World War III. Does President Biden feel obliged to honor agreements reached by his Secretary of State with foreign governments? Of course he does.

(2) The question has been raised: Why are American progressives more upset about dead Ukrainians than about dead Syrians? Is it because Ukrainians are white? Perhaps partially, but I think the main cause was the extreme complexity of the Syrian situation. It was never clear (to me, at least) who was fighting whom in Syria, with US, Islamists, Turkey, and Russia disguising their identities behind acronymic proxies. In Ukraine, it's simple: Russia vs. Ukraine, Putin vs. Zelensky. A much simpler two-party game, with a convenient comic-book villain and hero.

Footnote1: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Baker: "In May 1990, Soviet Union's reformist leader Mikhail Gorbachev visited the U.S. for talks with President Bush; there, he agreed to allow a reunified Germany to be a part of NATO. He later revealed that he had agreed to do so because James Baker promised that NATO troops would not be posted to eastern Germany and that the military alliance would not expand into Eastern Europe. Privately, Bush ignored Baker's assurances and later pushed for NATO's eastwards expansion. "

Image notes: image is a videogame scene (from Warhammer) posted (but since removed) by a user on 4Chan's "K" (Weapons) board, with the face of the videogame character "God Emperor of Mankind" (Link1) replaced by the face of Volodymyr Zelenskyy (Link2). I added the arrow pointing to the enlargement of Zelenskyy's face.


Link1: https://warhammer40k.fandom.com/wiki/Emperor_of_Mankind
Link2: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volodymyr_Zelenskyy

March 18, 2022

The movie poster image is from the press book for the 1938 film "Drums" (Link1), which tells the story of a British officer in Imperial India. A British troop is warned of a massacre by a friendly Indian prince (top right) who plays a danger signal on the "Sacred Drum of Tokot".

Two patterns are combined in the background:

First pattern is a square brick from the 1892 "Catalogue of moulded and ornamental brick" (Link2).

Second pattern is a page of technical drawings from the 2000 Ukrainian book "Креслення Сидоренко" (Link3; trans: 'Sidorenko's Drawings'; alternate title 'Technical Drawing') for vocational school students.). The author is V.I. Sidorenko.


Link1: https://archive.org/details/pressbook-ua-drums
Link2: https://archive.org/details/central-press-brick-1900s-a
Link3: https://archive.org/details/kreslennya-sidorenko

March 16, 2022


Leftmost image is a picture of the Indian god (blue, Krishna) and goddess (Radhi) playing together as children. The image is related to the Valentine's Day image of the two grown-up deities from February 12, 2022 (right),

St. Patrick's Day 37 years ago is when Janice and I moved from casual conversation at the workplace to secret post-work meetings for intense love-making. I think the intimacy of that sex led to the comfort we now have with our aging physical bodies.

Anyway, this will be my anniversary card.

The left image is the cover of a 1992 Russian book "Кухня Кришны" (Link1; trans: 'Krishna's Kitchen') recently uploaded to the Internet. The Russian uploader is clearly upset by the war between Russia and Ukraine; he included this confusing comment: "To understand how karma can cause war, consider an example from the Vedas. Sometimes a fire starts in a bamboo forest as a result of the friction of trees against each other. The real cause of the fire, however, is not the trees, but the wind that moves them. Trees are just tools. Similarly, the principle of karma indicates that the US and the USSR are not the true causes of the friction that has arisen between them, a friction that could ignite the fire of an atomic war. The true cause is the imperceptible wind of karma, born outwardly innocent inhabitants of the world." This is not helpful, pal.


Link1: https://archive.org/details/B-001-037-061-ALL

March 16, 2022


Ooops. Pushed wrong button and links to sources are gone.


March 15, 2022


I don't understand the ins-and-outs of U.S. foreign policy, but this 1990 memorandum of a conversation (if accurate, above) between George H.W. Bush's Secretary of State James Baker and Russian representatives seems to indicate that America promised not to expand NATO "one inch to the East" of its then-current borders. Which gives some credence to Putin's demand that Ukraine should not be included in NATO.

Read the history of NATO expansion on Wikipedia and it seems to show that "[a]ccording to polls conducted between 2005 and 2013, Ukrainian public support of NATO membership remained low. However, since the Russo-Ukrainian War and Annexation of Crimea, public support for Ukrainian membership in NATO has risen greatly. Since June 2014, polls showed that about 50% of those asked supported Ukrainian NATO membership. Some 69% of Ukrainians want to join NATO, according to a June 2017 poll by the Democratic Initiatives Foundation, compared to 28% support in 2012 when Yanukovych [Zelenskyy's predecessor] was in power." (Link2)

In other words, Putin's bullying tactics, besides revealing to the whole world the weaknesses of Russian military forces, have also been self-defeating, assuming that the Ukrainian people's opinion on NATO membership will someday count.

CORRECTION: Wrong prez and Secretary of State: it was George H.W. Bush and James Baker, not Ronald Reagan and Howard Baker. (Thanks, Al). Looking at the Wikipedia article on Baker (Link3), the facts are still puzzling: "In May 1990, Soviet Union's reformist leader Mikhail Gorbachev visited the U.S. for talks with President Bush; there, he agreed to allow a reunified Germany to be a part of NATO. He later revealed that he had agreed to do so because James Baker promised that NATO troops would not be posted to eastern Germany and that the military alliance would not expand into Eastern Europe. Privately, Bush ignored Baker's assurances and later pushed for NATO's eastwards expansion."


Link1: https://archive.org/details/navo-eastward-expansion/
Link2: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ukraine%E2%80%93NATO_relations
Link3: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Baker

March 14, 2022


First story: sometimes people ask where I get my images. Here is one source, an organization, The Public Domain Review that covers material in the public domain. Indeed, that's where I got the design in the frame of this image: an article "Love and Longing in the Seaweed Album" in the Review discussed 19th century pictures of seaweed; the image shown is a 1790 design for printed cotton by William Kilburn (Link1). I recommended subscribing to The Public Domain Review, or at least getting on its mailing list.

The second story is about the English King Henry VIII, who was seeking a wife. One of the possible marriage candidates was Anne of Cleves, and Henry commissioned artist Hans Holbein to a portrait of her (Link2). In the center is that portrait. Henry saw it, and decided to marry Anne. But the marriage, according to Henry, was never consummated, the marriage was annulled in two weeks, and Holbein's reputation was diminished.

Unlike most of my images, there was very little digital alteration of either the frame or the picture.


Link1: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Design_for_a_printed_cotton_by_William_Kilburn,_seaweed_pattern.jpg
Link2: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Anne_of_Cleves#/media/File:AnneCleves.jpg

March 11, 2022


Background is a collage of glassware and lace from a reprint of the 1913 mail order catalog of Detroit's early dime store, "Kresge's Katalog 5 Cent and 10 Cent Merchandise" (Link1).

Foreground is a decorative page ornament, a pretty childlike figure, from a 1941 issue of a Brazilian Methodist children's magazine, "Revista Bem-Te-Vi" (Link2). The magazine's odd name is from the song of the Great Kiskadee, well-known in South America.


Link1: https://archive.org/details/kresges-katalog
Link2: https://archive.org/details/bt-194111

March 5, 2022


An illustration from the 1561 "Der Stadt Worms Reformation" (Link1; trans: 'The City of Worms Reformation'), a collection of revised laws. It shows two dragons wrestling; the dragon is the symbol of the German city of Worms. The image is in the public domain. It nicely expresses the horror I feel as I follow developments in the Ukraine.

Note I changed the colors of my logo to the blue and yellow of Ukraine. The situation is complicated because of (1) Ukraine's dark history of anti-semitism in World War II and (2) the West's sympathy for the suffering white people of Ukraine is a lot more than its sympathy for the suffering brown people of the Middle East. And there is some reality to Putin's historic, sentimental vision of a former Russian empire. although in reality it's just myth, like the Holy Grail.

But those are just footnotes in comparison to the events as they are unfolding: the deaths, the suffering, the flagrant violation of international law, and the attractive character of Ukraine's quirky Jewish ex-comedian leader in comparison to the cold, merciless Russian leader.


Link1: https://archive.org/details/derstadtwormsreformation/

March 4, 2022


A scene of domestic order from the United States of the 1940's -- the land I was born into -- as Mom pours waffle batter into an electric waffle press, with a heaping portion of sausage roll-ups, pats of butter and a dispenser of maple syrup nearby. The recipe appears in the 1940 "The New Sealtest Book of Recipes and Menus" (Link1). Incidentally, the recipes in this book will be used in the heavenly kitchen, if I have anything to say about it.

The kitchen scene is overlaid with two patterns.

The first is a fabric pattern from a 1999 catalog of ancient Peruvian textiles in the style of the Nazca Culture, "Mary Frame Textiles De Estilo Nasca" (Link2).

The second pattern is an urban skyscape from a 2022 "Kit for curators" by photographer Maria Pons (Link3).


Link1: https://archive.org/details/sealtest_202112
Link2: https://archive.org/details/mary-frame-textiles-de-estilo-nasca-textiles-of-the-nasca-style
Link3: https://archive.org/details/kit-para-kuradores-02-03-2022

March 2, 2022



Lives are not all that are lost in modern aerial bombing. Some 25 of the works of Ukrainian folk artist Maria Prymchenko (Link1, Link2) were burnt in a Russian bombing attack on a Kyiv museum (Link3). Note the wildly imaginative titles she gives to her works.


Link1: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maria_Prymachenko
Link2: https://www.wikiart.org/en/maria-primachenko
Link3: https://www.republicworld.com/world-news/russia-ukraine-crisis/russia-ukraine-war-ukrainian-artist-maria-pryimachenkos-works-destroyed-in-kyiv-articleshow.html
March 1, 2022


A modified image of a page from the Peresopnytsia Gospel, a 16th-century illuminated manuscript (Link1) of the four Christian gospels. The slogan "SLAVA UKRAINI!" is a Ukrainian national salute.

The historic bible is stored in Kyiv, in Ukraine's National Library. The city is currently under bombardment from missiles as part of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.


LINKS: Link1: https://www.pinterest.com.mx/pin/293719206938292596/

February 28, 2022


Respected Yale History professor Tim Snyder has been closely following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, and included the following image in a post on Twitter (Link1). It shows two young English girls wearing Ukrainian hair garlands, lighting a votive candle in a church for the safety of victims of the Russian attack on Ukraine

The caption: "My friends are in basements, in flight, and under fire. Help." The post includes ways to help the Ukrainian resistance -- donations for humanitarian assistance, medical supplies, and protective equipment at sites that accept credit cards.

Snyder gives no source for the photo but it was run in the local newspaper of Gloucester.

Note: Resolution for UN General Assembly to meet on Ukraine conflict was vetoed by Russia, with only India, China, and the United Arab Emirates abstaining, the other 11 nations voting for General Assembly to hold meeting.


LINKS: Link1: https://snyder.substack.com/p/a-few-more-ways-to-help-ukrainians?utm_source=url

February 26, 2022


Four days between entries.



February 24, 2022


A week between entries. Clearly, a low-productivity period for me after my Sepsis-ode and the slow rate of progress in moving through the medical system for treatment of my enlarged prostate. This has reduced my general energy level (although I still get out of the house every day for errands). Productivity was also impacted by a video piece that just didn't seem to work out. I may return to it.

Reading a book about climate change, "Falter" by Bill McKibben. McKibben is starting an organization called "Third Act", activism for folks in my age group (Link1).


Flying in the foreground, a metallic 'Lady of the Future', a detail of a painting by fantasy artist Julie Bell. It appears in a picture book "Twin Visions" (Link2) by Bell and her husband and artistic partner Boris Vallejo.

In the background, a chart from a 1958 Russian book on typography, "Построение шрифтов" (Link3w; trans: 'Type Construction'). The accompanying text explains "The table illustrates the changes in the style of the letter A of the Russian alphabet from 1021 (letter number 18) to 1835 (letter number 54)."


Link1: https://vtdigger.org/2021/09/02/bill-mckibben-launches-third-act-to-rally-older-americans-around-climate-change/
Link2: https://archive.org/details/twin-vision-masgical-art-boris-vallejo-and-julie-bell
Link3: https://archive.org/details/1958_postroenie-shriftov

February 20, 2022


I initially selected the image because I was worrying about the massing of Russian troops on the Ukrainian border; a European war was the nightmare I was born into. At first glance, the image looked military.

But when I examined the image more closely (I couldn't read the text, which was in the Indian dialect of Telegu), I saw that it presented a less scary image, of a band of men carrying instruments walking behind a group of synchronized marching women, an image from a New Orleans or Philly Mummers parade.

The image was on the cover of a 1990 issue of an Indian literary magazine, "Srujana" (Link1; trans: 'Creation').



Link1: https://archive.org/details/Srujana172_Feb90.pdf

February 13, 2022


From Hindu mythology, the blue-skinned lord Krishna and his lover Rahda. Rahda was the childhood playmate of Krishna, then became his beloved consort (but not wife) when they grew up. Krishna and Rahda are "worshipped as the combined forms of feminine as well as the masculine realities of God." Her images are beautiful. (Link1) This painting is from the cover of a recent religious book "Radha Shodasanama Stotram" (Link2).

The hearts in the frame are from the dingbat font "Hearts Salad" by the Spanish bad-boy Woodcutter (Link3).

This is my Valentine's Day card for Janice, who has been loving and tender throughout this period of illness and confusion. (There were moments during my 104-degree fever that I didn't recognize her.)

I hope the image shows how comfortably the male and female bodies fit together, not just the reproductive bits, but the hips and limbs and hollows, after decades of holding on to one another.



Link1: https://duckduckgo.com/?q=radha&atb=v1-1&iax=images&ia=images
Link2: https://archive.org/details/radha-shodasanama-stotram
Link3: https://www.dafont.com/hearts-salad.font

February 12, 2022





February 7, 2022



PHOTOS: Action scenes of University of Nebraska women's volleyball team, from various media guides (Link1).


Link1: https://archive.org/search.php?query=subject%3A%22Nebraska+Media+Guide%22

February 5, 2022



FOREGROUND: Display of decorative automobile hubcaps, source not available.

BACKGROUND 1: Photo of desserts from the 1940 "300 Tasty, Healthful Dairy Dishes" (Link1). Caption reads: 'Bring the Spring garden to your luncheon table with the pastry tube, cream cheese and salad greens."

BACKGROUND 2: Drawing of female nude by anime illustrator Olivier Vatine "Vatine Sketchbook 3" (Link2)


Link1: https://archive.org/details/desert_20220130
Link2: https://archive.org/details/comix-buro-sketchbook-3

February 3, 2022


"Just Dont Fall" is the latest in my series of post cards, a wintertime incantation, reminding all my friends to step carefully -- that nothing can destroy your quality of life more quickly than a broken bone from a moment's fall in the snow or a stumble on the stairway.


IMAGE: Photo from 1931 book "Encyclopédie de l'architecture : constructions modernes. Tome III" (Link1; trans: 'Encyclopedia of architecture: modern constructions. Volume III') by Albert Morancé. It shows the stairway of a hotel in the Parisian neighborhood of Montmartre.


Link1: https://archive.org/details/frapn02-encyclopedie-de-l-architecture-constructions-modernes-tome-3-1931

January 31, 2022

Explanation, sources, and links accidentally deleted



January 30, 2022


An image suggested by my recent medical drama, where the bacteria Enterobacter cloacae got into my urinary tract and then my bloodstream. I woke up with a fever and Janice took me to the emergency room. The hotshot medical team at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP) tracked it down and found the right combination of antibiotics to make it go away. Condition is called Sepsis and can be fatal.

The mental metaphor in my mind doing this piece: the battle cruiser ready to go find the target (=HUP and my doctor), and the hardy gun crew ready to do battle (=the scientists) tracking down the offending bacteria using high tech. The girls are a nod to the lovely women (doctors and nurses) who took care of me.


BACKGROUND: Printed circuit board for Atari ST computer, from 1988 electronic magazine "Elektor Electronics" (Link1)

FOREGROUND (TOP): Photo of World War 1 Russian Black Sea cruiser "Ochakov" at anchor, from the 1986 Russian book in the series Remarkable Ships, "Крейсер Очаков" (Link2; trans: 'Cruiser Ochakov')

FOREGROUND (BOTTOM): Photo of gun crew from Link2

FOREGROUND (MIDDLE RIGHT): Photo of two schoolgirls looking at a picture book, from 1972 Polish book "Wychowanie Przedszkolne W Polsce Ludowe" (Link3; trans: 'Pre-school education in Poland')


Link1: https://archive.org/details/elektor_electronics-1988_11
Link2: https://archive.org/details/B-001-036-897-ALL
Link3: https://archive.org/details/zofia-woznicka-wychowanie-przedszkolne-w-polsce-ludowej-1972

January 27, 2022


Folks into Copyright Law and Public Domain issues celebrate every January, as the law allows new items to enter into the public domain ("The public domain consists of all the creative work to which no exclusive intellectual property rights apply.") In 2022, book and music from 1896 enter into the public domain. For part of this image, I went to a listing of 40,000 books published in 1896, presented by Hathi Trust Digital Library. Here's one good general listing of public domain sources.


FIGURE: Photo appearing in 1979 issue of Polish cinema journal "Film" (Link1), showing actress and writer Christine Pascal in the 1979 Polish drama "Panny z Wilka" (Link2' trans: 'Maids of Wilko') playing the youngest of five sisters revisited by their tutor after a long absence. Pascal (Link3) died in 1996, committing suicide in a mental hospital; suicide had long been a subject of her writing.

FOSSILS: Two illustrations from 1896 Paleontology book "Die Leitfossilien" (Link4: trans: 'The Lead Fossils') by German scholar Ernst Koken. (Link5)

BACKGROUND: Illustration from 1896 manual on winemaking, "La taille de la vigne: étude comparée des divers systèmes de taille" (Link6: trans: 'The pruning of the vine: comparative study of various pruning systems') showing grapevines on trellises.


Link1: https://archive.org/details/film-1979-01-07-nr-01
Link2: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Maids_of_Wilko
Link3: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christine_Pascal
Link4: https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/009222165
Link5: https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernst_Koken
Link4: https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/009176710

January 21, 2022


An experiment in balancing a busy, busy background with a quiet foreground figure, when the color palettes are close. Again, an image produced from images found in a one-hour trawl of my favorite source and then a few hours of digital image assembly. It is purely unplanned and spontaneous.


FOREGROUND: Polish actress Krystyna Janda in the 1980 Polish film "The Orchestra Conductor", from a still in the 1980 Polish cinema journal "Film" (Link1). Janda played Marta, a young violinist who discovers her mother had an affair with the conductor, John Gielgud.

BACKGROUND: Images of red and yellow heraldry from the kingdom (now city) of Aragon in Spain, from the 1995 picture book "Coat of Arms of Aragon" (Link2). The lineage was transmitted through the line of women, not men, as was the usual practice at the time.


Link1: https://archive.org/details/film-1980-03-16-nr-11
Link2: https://archive.org/details/blason-de-aragon

January 19, 2022

Combining disparate images from a single online 1.5-hour trawl. The trawl, plus the artistic collage-making that followed, helped me recover from a sense of lethargy.

In the center, boyishly-thin English actress Twiggy, dressed as a traditional commedia dell'arte clown, perches on a cardboard crescent moon. She is flanked by the imposing duplicate figures of 70-year-old Indian barbell trainer Capt. (Army or Police?) J.N. Bannerjee. Barely visible in the background are some microphotographs of reproductive cells of the Octopbus.


BACKGROUND FIGURE: From the 1973 Polish movie magazine "Film" (Link1), a photo of English model Twiggy in the 1971 movie "Boy Friend".

SEATED MAN: Photograph from 1930 Indian exercise handbook "Muscle Control And Barbell Exercise." (Link2). Caption reads ''Capt. J.N. Bannerjee, Bar-at-law At the age of Seventy." Image is doubled.

BACKGROUND TEXTURE: Matrix of microscopic slides from 2020 book "Invertebrata Embryology & Reproduction" (Link3)


Link1: https://archive.org/details/film-1973-12-30-nr-48
Link2: https://archive.org/details/217858632-muscle-control-and-barbell-exercise
Link3: https://archive.org/details/Invertebrata-embryology-reproduction-2020

January 17, 2022



IMAGE: Illustrations for 1898 science fiction novel "Through The Earth" by American author Clement Fezandie (Link1), digitally altered. Caption reads: "Up He Went, Spinning like a Top."

MUSIC: 1965 Song "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag" written by James Brown, performed in 1971 by Singaporean singer 'Sakura' (Link2)

SHAPE: A template for a geometric shape (attach at tabs) from an undated Spanish-language "Plantillas De Poliedros" (Link3; trans 'Polyhedron Templates')

TEXT: "Egyptian Letters" 2021 dingbat font by Ding Bang (Link4)


Link1: https://archive.org/details/through-the-earth
Link2: https://archive.org/details/lp_sakura_2
Link3: https://archive.org/details/plantillas-de-poliedros-imprimir-2do
Link4: https://www.dafont.com/egyptian-letters.font

January 17, 2022

A 3-D template for a triangle, with a picture of a motor superimposed.


Photo of automotive motor from 1929 "Audel's Electric Library" (Link1)

A template for a paper triangle (attach at tabs) from an undated Spanish-language "Plantillas De Poliedros" (Link2; trans 'Polyhedron Templates')


Link1: https://archive.org/details/audels-electric-library-vol-8
Link2: https://archive.org/details/plantillas-de-poliedros-imprimir-2do/mode/2up

January 13, 2022

After a very upsetting week that included a 7.5 hour visit to a COVID-stressed big-city emergency room, I chose what I think is a very calming image. A woman in a farm dress patiently sorting flax seeds.


IMAGE: Photograph from 1929 Russian book "Методика Селекции Льна И Конопли" (Link1; trans 'Flax And Hemp Breeding Technique') shows a young woman washing out flax seeds with tap water. She holds in her hand a tweezer. The book was written before Lysenkoism (Link2) crippled Russian biology research.


Link1: https://archive.org/details/1929_20220106
Link2: https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2017/12/trofim-lysenko-soviet-union-russia/548786/

January 11, 2022


Another snapshot from my pessimistic worldview. The idea is that as a privileged American I get to observe from safety (like from a bus) the awful atrocities that have happened in my lifetime. And there's little I have been able to do to prevent or relieve them.


FOREGROUND: Photograph of driver's seat and dash of a General Electric bus from a 1929 edition of Audel's 12-volume Electricity Guide (Link1)

BACKGROUND: 1991 painting of 1937 Nanjing Massacre (Link2) of Chinese citizens by Japanese troops by Chinese artist Li Zijian (Link3)


Link1: https://archive.org/details/audels-electric-library-vol-8
Link2: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nanjing_Massacre
Link3: https://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1080087.shtml

January 5, 2022


Looking over human literature, a whole lot of the most imaginative work has been done in the service of wildly implausible spiritual theories. The figure "Spiritual Symbol Man" is meant to represent the variety of these theories.

Although I don't understand Russian, I gather the Russian song about Green Grass -- sung by the tragic Red Army Chorus -- is a children's song:

Green grass, it's my pleasure.
Green grass, this is my duvet [blanket].
When I think about it, I lie down on it.
When I think about it, I sit on it.


IMAGE: Illustration from 1994 Russian book "Astrology and Myth" by Semira V. Vetash (Link1), showing the Hindu deity Indra.

TEXT: "Egyptian Letters" 2021 dingbat font by Ding Bang (Link2)

MUSIC: Excerpt from song 'Green Grass/Travička Zelena' from 1959 album "The Red Army Marches In Hi-Fi" by The Alexandrov Red Army Ensemble (Link3); in 2016, 64 members of the ensemble were killed in the crash of a Russian Tu-154.


Link1: https://archive.org/details/semira-v.-vetash-astrology-and-myth
Link2: https://www.dafont.com/egyptian-letters.font?sort=date
Link3: https://archive.org/details/lp_the-red-army-marches-in-hi-fi_the-alexandrov-red-army-ensemble-boris-ale
January 4, 2022


Have set myself the goal of one video per week. But this holiday week has been hard, with three false starts -- and I'm not happy with this one.

Not a happy view of human nature as I stumble into 2022. Let's hope the January 6 committee restores my faith.


IMAGE (Left): Bodies piled up in stairway below a second-floor interrogation center in Cambodian prison camp during Khmer Rouge rule in the 1970's, from a travelers visit to a current museum on the site (Link1)

IMAGE: Illustration of space vehicle control room from 1965 book "Orbiting Stations: Stopovers to Space Travel" (Link2)

MUSIC: Excerpt from "Largo & Allegro Vivo" on record "Cello Colours" by André Navarra; Jacqueline Dussol (Link3)


Link1: https://www.keepcalmandwander.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/Tuol-Sleng-Genocide-Museum-Cambodia-171.jpg
Link2: https://archive.org/details/orbiting-stations
Link3: https://archive.org/details/lp_cello-colours_andr-navarra-jacqueline-dussol

January 3, 2022


A kind of artistic commemoration of the two strands of my religious past: (1) the Roman Catholic rosary of my childhood and (2) the Runic writing of my old European ancestors.

Also, a note of the New Year, using Woodcutter's "Bad Times" font. (Link3)


IMAGE1: Photo of 9th Century Viking Runes carved on 5-ton granite slab in Sweden, from 1923 "Walzel Handbuch Der Literaturwissenschaft" (Link1; trans 'Walzel Handbook of Literary Studies')

IMAGE2: Image from cover of undated pamphlet describing the Roman Catholic prayer beads known as the "Franciscan Crown or the Rosary of the Seven Joys of the Blessed Virgin" (Link2)


Link1: https://archive.org/details/walzel-handbuch-der-literaturwissenschaft-bd-12.1
Link2: https://archive.org/details/franciscan-crown
Link3: https://www.dafont.com/bad-times.font

December 27, 2021



IMAGE: Cover of 1961 35-cent paperback "Brother and Sister: A Tender, Compassionate Novel Of Incestuous Love" by Donald Westlake (Link1) writing under the psuedonym Edwin West. Cover artist not credited.


Link1: https://archive.org/details/brother-and-sister-by-edwin-west

December 25, 2021


My 77th birthday. Dinner with friends at a local bar with good food and a pool table -- how long since I've done that? Used to do that three times a week in the old days. Accepting a certain amount of Covid risk.

I feel loved and secure in my place in the world -- but time is running down for an overweight, underexercised near-octagenarian. Every project, every piece, could be my last. I'm okay with that.


MUSIC: Excerpt from 1967 sacred song "Dies Irae: Oratorio Dedicated to the Memory of Those Murdered at Auschwitz" by Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki (Link1)

IMAGES: Illustrations from 1900 "Горькие плоды пьянства. Альбом рисунков, изоброажающих вред пьянства" (Link2; trans 'The bitter fruits of drunkenness. Album of drawings depicting the harm of drunkenness') published by Alexander Nevsky Sobriety Society, St. Petersburg.


Link1: https://archive.org/details/lp_penderecki-dies-irae-auschwitz-oratorium_henryk-czyzh-orkiestra-filharmonii-im-karo
Link2: https://archive.org/details/gorkie_plody_pyanstva
December 23, 2021



IMAGE: Photo by Bob Moore
December 22, 2021

ARCHIVE: Webpage Proprietor's Portraits
Time to change my image at top of this web page. The new image is a small pencil portrait done by Remo Frangiosa. It was done while I sat for Remo's portrait class over a two-week period at Philadelphia's historic Plastic Club in September, 2015.
The second image is a larger painting I commissioned from the Plastic Club's Andy Hoffmann.

Next are two other images also used as masthead portraits. Third image is an iPad self-portait in a coffee shop (approx. 2014). It is probably the best representation of my revulsion at the aging process and my sadness at the prospect of diminishing cognitive powers.
Fourth is an attempt to limit portrait to the fewest number of facial features and still be recognizable (approx. 2012). (Sorry: unlike the other images on this page, these masthead pictures don't enlarge when clicked...)
Fifth is a drawing done in our Open Studio workshop by Meri Collier, a Toronto-based artist and member of the Plastic Club.

To contact Philly-Bob, email me at bobmoore [at symbol] pobox.com (of course, replace "[at symbol]" with "@"].

Masthead Portrait by Remo Frangiosa, 2015