Sunday, August 28, 2011


the glowstick wench at Medieval Times

Two weekend ago, I visited Medieval Times with my boyfriend. The catalyst was a This American Life episode in which Ira Glass brought a medieval historian to the dinner and stunt show, and he loved it- much to everyone's surprise. In the historian's opinion, Medieval Times captured the spirit of the era, however imperfect the technical details may have been.

That's how I feel about living history, too- it's more important to create a feeling of history than recreate perfectly a past which most of us probably wouldn't enjoy visiting on the
weekends. Yet, when we visited Medieval Times, I found myself thinking some funny thoughts. When the main narrator... chancellor?... was speaking, warming up the crowd for the main show, I kept thinking "this is fine, but it's not what a real medieval fair is like". That's such a ludicrous concept- that some fake middle ages attractions are less authentic than other medieval attractions. The fact is they all have a huge element of fantasy, just in the the fact that they ask audiences to suspend disbelief in time travel. And yes, some medieval fairs are full on reenactments, where all clothing is made of period accurate fiber and the performers have mastered vernacular of the day. But ultimately, it's all a fantasy.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


I wish uploading images to blogger was a little easier. Here's an image of a work in progress. I think I may add the painted backdrop element to this painting. I'm really happy with the composition and I'm going to push the interaction between characters so that it reads like some of the great card-sharp paintings.

I'm putting aside the guitarist painting for the time being and I'm going to revisit the photo with the tuning devices which I previously discarded. I'm starting to think that would be an interesting moment to depict. I was concerned about making the performers look careless but in truth, tuning one's instrument is an act of care. I like the idea that a small, personal action precedes a public performance.

This weekend I'm going to print more photos and make more collages. I'm going to pay attention to what excites me about the photos, and focus less on what I think is 'viable' or 'appropriate' or 'meets expectations'.