Tuesday, February 22, 2005

RR Star Article


I have a few things to say about the event. I also quit Insight. I have a thing or three to say about that. I'll post it soon. 'sgonna be a big'un.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Like blogging, but someone else takes care of that tedious typing crap

Hey, sports-fans. Rockford’s paper, The Rockford Register Star, interviewed me today. Look for it on Tuesday. I’ll provide a link to the article later.
See you at the opening.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Gi-hugic Womens, Favicons, and Junk.

You gotta know a love poem is gonna be tweaked as hell when it is part of a corpus of work called The Flowers of Evil. And well, that’s what Baudelaire does. He’s big with the tweaked.
I added his poem, “The Giantess (La Géante)” to the gallery page at timstotz.com that my Giant women pictures will be on. I think it compliments them well.

Special thanks to the site, fleursdumal.org. They allowed me to reproduce their translations.

There are several versions. Here’s a good one:

The Giantess (La Géante) — Charles Baudelaire
In times of old when Nature in her glad excess
Brought forth such living marvels as no more are seen,
I should have loved to dwell with a young giantess,
Like a voluptuous cat about the feet of a queen;

To run and laugh beside her in her terrible games,
And see her grow each day to a more fearful size,
And see the flowering of her soul, and the first flames
Of passionate longing in the misty depths of her eyes;

To scale the slopes of her huge knees, explore at will
The hollows and the heights of her — and when, oppressed
By the long afternoons of summer, cloudless and still,

She would stretch out across the countryside to rest,
I should have loved to sleep in the shadow of her breast,
Quietly as a village nestling under a hill.

Translation: George Dillon, Flowers of Evil (NY: Harper and Brothers, 1936)

For more translations, you can go to their page that they have dedicated to “The Giantess”. The interpretations are varied—some almost tame, some sexy, some just dark as hell.
It worked well with my photos. I kind of wanted to put this in with my artist’s statement, but really isn’t it kind of Baudelaire’s Artist Statement? I never claimed my idea was utterly without precedent, but cribbing from someone’s poem suggests I can’t come up with my own reason why giant women are cool.


I hope everybody bookmarked my home page. And if you haven’t there’s a new reason for you to do it to it: ! That tiny, little graphic is called a favicon /fay-veye-con/ and it should appear either in the bar at the top you type the URL in, and/or in your bookmark list after you save it. (not here, my home page) I can’t believe I got it to work. I’m none too bright.
I now own brakes. Yeah. They work and everything. Yeah, and they’re actually ON my car. Novel place for them, wouldn’t you agree? Would I be too complain-y if I said that they work too well? ‘Cause they do. I was so used to essentially standing on the things to come to any sort of stop, that now that they do work, I damn-neared go through the windshield. So, I guess I’ll need a new one of those fuckers soon. Stupid windshield.

Back at the beginning, I remember stoically, if not horribly inaccurately, proclaiming that I would make this mainly a technical journal. It would be all Mega Bits, Bytes, and nibbles, and there would be aggravating talk of depth of field, and focal point, and of course we had to get the Bezier curves representin’, and all that fun jargony stuff. Anyone notice I’m goin’ another way with this thing? Yeah. I WILL include technical details. I’ll also have articles on my main page. But, the personal rants are just so therapeutic (not that I need therapy), and the small audience of readers so far seem to like them.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Victory, Defeat, and Living in that Gap between.

Did the whole Red Cross Mardi Gras thing on Friday. Had a pretty good time.
Here’s where the less-good starts: the piece I donated wasn’t in the live auction, it got moved to the silent auction. I don’t know the reason behind this, but that was the way it was. I was fine with it. I didn’t have to do the spot-light thing sober, so that worked out well.
On a sidebar, it’s a good thing registering web domain names is cheap because on the little thing by my piece, it had my name as “Tim Stock” and you know, that’s not my name. It IS cooler. I mean “Tim Stock” is more secret agent or even porn star than “Stotz”—that’s just a sound effect. I’ve heard sneezes that sounded vaguely like someone calling my name. So look soon for timstock.com, my eventual name change, and my driving a pimped out, spy-style car that shoots oil slicks out the back as a design feature, as opposed to the symptoms of squirrels eating away vital components of my engine.
The piece of mine (along with just about everything else in the silent auction) was not bid on well. I felt really failure-riffic for a while. Rationalization of all manner zoomed through my mind—none of it wildly inaccurate, but still it was rationalization. For instance: ‘the crowd is conservative as Newt Gingrich’s skivvies, my picture is not; people will wait toward the end to bid in a Hail Marry style frenzy, and well they have a lot of fingerprints on the picture, that makes it look kind of bad.’
Man, that crowd was conservative! Let’s just say the religious iconography outsold my stuff by gobs. There was this cross picture that was about a table and a half down from mine, and the opening bid on it was literally ten times that of mine. Don’t get me wrong. It was a peach as cross pictures go. There was that longish- vertical line right there, and a shorter horizontal line like so…toward the top, not the bottom.
Good thing I’m not bitter. ‘Cept when I am. Which is now.
No time for that though. I put that depressing crap out of my fool head. There wuz tickets to sell, Skeeter. So I joined Trace, and Miss Rockford and went around selling tickets to raffle off this $3,000 bracelet.
My job: ticket-holder guy. Trace was money-taking gal, and Miss Rockford, or to be more personable—let’s call her “Ashley” since that’s her name, was on hold-bracelet-out-to-show-folks-what-they’re-bidding-on duty. She also was on offer-pen-to-folk-so-they-can-fill-out-their-ticket patrol, but with the title of Miss Rockford comes heavy responsibility—she handled the double-duty with aplomb.
The tickets flowed like wine. We sold an ASS-LOAD.
Then it was break time. The crowd ate, and Trace and I hung back. Pat, one of the people running the shindig, bought me a drink—didn’t hate that. The good folks did offer us some chow, but Trace and I had already ate. Still, real nice of them. Cost the revelers 60 beans a plate.
Then more ticket selling. The levee really broke and we sold tons. Or to continue the theme: ASS-TONS.
Suddenly, we were pulled on the dance floor by one of the Red Cross director-types. For a while, I was the only male, and I must say I danced as well as only a sober white man can. Maybe I should have spared the people the spectacle of me unintentionally doing my Elaine from “Seinfeld,” but I couldn’t help it. The Moonlight Jazz Orchestra will put you in the mood to shake what your Mama gave you. I convulsed; the women-folk danced. It was a whole thing.
Trace was mastering the floor, as is her want—despite the forgetting of the Tango steps. Ashley must have had that tiara nailed to her head for it not to fly off, impaling the passers-by. See. Again with the aplomb.
Local news anchor, Danni Maxwell was cutting a rug pretty well too. That was cool, but a bit surreal. May color how I see her from now on. No matter how much I’ve worked in the land of local television, it still hits me: when you’re used to seeing people exclusively on TV—in very specific roles, no less—it takes a bit of a cognitive leap for you to accept their doing other stuff, like, you know, real people. Now that I have seen her swing dancing, it may be hard to get that image out of my head. ‘In news today, a chemical truck exploded, making Rockford a toxic waste dump of Three-Mile-Island proportions. Now, I’m going to do the Lindy Hop.’
One of the other cool things that came out of the evening was this: Ashley is going to be a 500 foot woman for me when I pick the series back up late spring-ish. She’s cool. I think it will be a blast to work with her. She seemed to like the piece I had there, too. In fact, a lot of the party-goers thought it was cool. Some thought I looked like Kato Kaelin—less cool. But, I think I drummed up business for the art show the following week, and for the series of mine. And there were a few more bids on my piece before the end. A lot less than the eleventy-kajillion dollars (US funds) I had hoped for.
By way of preemptory strike I should point out that I know that it’s a bit hypocritical that my moaning of people not spending scads of filthy lucre on my piece does not contrasts MY not spending any money. But I’m a starving artist, not a cap-ee-tan of industry. And I did donate a piece and volunteered and was a boat load of charming.
Another factoid: this is the second Vaentine’s day thing in a row I spent with Trace…and my hair stylist, Gena. Eerie echoes of last year. It once again was an occasion where we got all decked out in our Sunday-go-to-meetin’ duds.
Last year it was a party Gena threw—a fundraiser, like this party. When I put my suit on, I found a gift certificate I won last year at her party. Shows you how much I wear the suit. I was pleasantly surprised to See Gena there last night. Surprised and intensely aware that in my hectic lifestyle, that I haven’t gotten a hair cut in a real long time. Thus the Kato Kaelin crack.
Oh, I should add this: don’t worry, fellas. Trace and I are just friends. She’s a free agent still.
Anyway, where was I? The band took a break, and we sold more tickets. Then the live auction.
Pat, at the last minute, offered to re-put my piece into the live auction. That was really cool of her, but we decided that I’d keep it where it was. I could claim the taxes that way, and I figured the live auction could be potentially embarrassing. I’m glad I went the less-humiliating way.
The live auction was no more a friend to the art community than the silent auction in most respects. Here’s a litmus paper for the evening: a Tom Heflin painting—the one famous painter from Rockford who’s pretty much a household name, AND he’s also the guy in the Winnie the Pooh stories hanging out with Woozles who scares Tigger—had a painting go for $410. His stuff often goes for in the thousands—nay dozens of thousands. And his sunset looked like every bit as purty of a sunset as I ha’e ever seen.
I felt sorry for the auctioneers. They were exasperated and incredulous and damn near begging. Allow me to make up another quote to demonstrate: ‘Do I hear $425? It’s a Heflin. It has a really nice frame. He’s famous. Come on, you in-bread hill-rod dirt-necks! It’s a fucking Tom mother-fucking Heflin! $425? $410? For the love of all things holy, $410?’ So yeah, it sold for $410, and that was probably only because the bidder thought it was a Thomas KINCAID.
But, the pragmatic of the thing: money is money. It all went to a good cause. And little blows to ego notwithstanding, it looks like a win-win dealio. But you should donate more to the red cross.

Oh yeah. To cap off my evening, my brakes went out. But on the plus side: my emergency brake works fabulously.
See? It’s the space BETWEEN victory and defeat.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

I Am a Getter-of-Go

A “Go-Getter” if you will. And, if I know you, you will.
I’m happy to keep up the fever pitch of the freelance jobber but I need some Tim time. (It’s my most favorite time.)
The clients just seem to want stuff faster and faster, and there will eventually be some sort of temporal folding in which I sit down to a first meeting with a client and they ask why-come I don’t have their job done yet. Frustrating, but that’s the look of the landscape.
Friday I’m going out…but in an official capacity. There’s this Mardi Gras charity Red Cross thing. I’ve been asked to donate a picture from the rockford: Small City Series, so I did. In the previous passage I ranted about the nervousness. I’m sure I will have the same nervousness, but there is a catch. There is less of my work there; it’s for charity, and people will be drunken fools there. Those would rank in the “pro” coloumn. Here’s the one big con: in order to attend the thing, I have to be a volunteer or pay a lot of money. I got no problem with the money paying in the principal; it’s the practical that makes it difficult. That’s just a florid way of saying, “I’m broke like a joke.” So, yeah. I’m a volunteer, not a paying, bona-fide, ticketed guest. The nature of what I’ll be volunteering with is vague at best, but one thing I’m reasonably certain on is they won’t volunteer me up to liberate them of the horrible burden of excess alcohol. Good thing I’m a ham too. I have to get up and talk a little before the live auction. Did I mention the very probably “no alcohol” scenario? I thought so. One thing I will do plenty of: pimp the site, timstotz.com, and the art show the following week, and of course, me—the humble freelancer who will push pixels for them as can pay.
So, I think maybe-haps I’m going out Saturday. I should re-coup, save money, be a responsible citizen, and floss, and…stuff, but I want real-deal release. Socialize with folk who aren’t the landed-gentry, talk to pretty women who I’m not shooting pictures of, and listen to some music. Anyone else up for Stendek at Kryptonite?

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

My artist's statement

Well, it’s been a job of work, but I’m done, as done can be. I finished all the images that will go in the 2020 visions show at the Rockford Art Museum. Want a sneak peak?
I lie a bit--still got a bit to do. I have to go fill out some forms on how much the stuff is worth, and I have to give them my artist’s statement. Nope. I tried, and there really is no NOT pretensions way to say that. Speaking of work, I have to thank Jim J. for helping me frame my stuff. By help, of course I mean "do almost entirely." I did the clippy things. Don't discount the clippy things! It's all about the clippy things, man.
So, the show’s on the 18th, and goes ‘till May 1. You should stop out. On opening night, you’ll get to see that rare flower that is my getting drunk out of sheer nervousness.
Or Not. Wait. To be clear: no negotiating the drunk thing. I’m going to be partaking in a big way, but whether I’m nervous or not remains to be seen. I’ve thrown a lot of work out there to the universe, and I’m pretty thick skinned. When people speak negatively, I realize that they are talking about the work and not the man. Mainly, because it is impossible not to like me. Come on! I’m totally likeable. Downright adorable by some accounts. But this is my first museum show, my first serious foray into still photography (I usually like those pictures to zing by at 29.97 frames per second). So it’s new. And New is exciting and exhilarating, and there’s a big side order of “scary as Hell” in the mix too. This isn’t news. Everyone knows the unknown is just soooooo…unknown. But when the new and the unknown come home to roost, it’s a thing of reality instead of theory, and it directly applies to you, thus: nerve wracking.
But then there’s the whole “I can’t change anything at this point” vibe. So (shoulder shrug) what the hey! I’m looking forward to it.
Here’s what I do know: I will gain some notoriety, but I’m not going to come out a rock star; some people may think my stuff is kind of racy for the museum, but most will respect where I’m coming from; some will get what the pieces are about, some will either underestimate, overestimate, or provide what can at best be called a “radical interpretation of the text” or image, whatever.

So you want to read my artist statement? Believe it or not, I come off glib.

The series, rockford: Small City, Snapshots of an Apotheosis, is a surreal, whimsical, look at the downtown area of Rockford. Rockford is not a city of quantum leaps; frustratingly, our beloved town sometimes seems as if it barely progresses at all. For a big change to occur, we need something, well, big. In a satirical, Modest Proposal sort of way, I guess towering, 500 feet tall women would be a viable engine of change. But mostly, they would be just…fun. That’s what this series is about, really: fun. What’s more fun than taking models who are local Rockfordians, who work and play in the downtown area, and making them towering goddesses? In addition to hanging around downtown, many of the models have a connection to the scenes in which they star. These giant women appear playful—if you consider property damage playful. Sexy. Awe-inspiring. Empowered in a tongue-in-cheek way, but more the realm of fantasy than manifesto. There’s a carefree spirit, throw in some femme fatale, and what looks almost like innocence…and then imagine the point of view of a hapless bystander…just walking along. Snapshot. In addition to the visual, you can throw in some questions about one-way attraction. You know—that moment when you notice someone across the room who doesn’t notice you? Or about wanting what’s dangerous for you. But, mainly, like I said: fun.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Fame: and baby-steps to obtaining same.

You know what ego surfing is right? You type your name into Google (or other search engines if there are any still around out there), and see the results. I heard of it, but never have done it. Recently, however, I have started a web page that serves as a gallery, and eventually an online store. Perhaps I’ve mentioned it here—timstotz.com. I have? I thought so.
Well search engine ranking is kind of important. So the results were kind of fun…first off timstotz.com is still not even ranked. I’ve submitted it to Google and everything.
The top result (as of this post) was for a guy named…whoa! That was a close one! I almost inflated his search ranking by using his name. Ok, so let’s use a code. It’ll be our secret. Just like the time I told you about setting the drapes on fire—oh I didn’t yet? So, getting on with it. No enigma machine required, just read every OTHER letter. So, fer instance, the word “fucktard” would be “fqucqkqtqaqrqd.”
Anyway, so the first guy is Tqiwm Lqoqwqlqy. He’s not a Stotz, but he mentions a Tim Stotz, and yet another Tim with an entirely different surname. He too is an art guy it appears. Rubbish! Direct competition in the same field!
There’s even a TqiqmqoqtqhqyqSqtqoqtqz.com.” (ranked third) Eerily similar to mine, and dig this happy horseshit: he’s an artsy-fartsy type too! The ONLY saving grace is that My first name has two Ms in it. Timmothy Stotz.
There’s also a French Surrealist Painter with my name… J' Accuse! Or Zut, alors! Or some shit.
So are all Tims art-types? No! Some are my polar opposite! Many Tims are high school sports people. Yick. Some have marriages listed in religious magazines. Marriage. Religion. Damn, other Tim! What gives?
A Tim or two seem to be CPAs (kill me now); some are teachers (not too bad, but it makes me feel depressed because I didn’t complete my teaching certificate in college, so I hate him too!) BTW: those weren’t Stotzes. They were Tims who had a Stotz—not named Tim—in the same article. There is also a Tim somehow connected with Handcuffs No pun. I think he sells them. Not me. I swear.
But take heart, gentle reader. Some Tims are I.
First mention of me: I’m in the Rock River Film Fest program for the “Ultra Extra Plus 2.” A short film the boys at Engine Studio and I put together.
Second mention: The Good Folks at aegisstudios.net mention me on their page ‘cause I’m involved with their upcoming movie, “Necromance.”
Third Mention: (This one kind of gave me the Heejah Beebies) I’m listed in the WRCR Staff Page. WRCR was the old Rockford College Radio Station. I didn’t see that one coming. That was weird. Thanks for asking my permission to post my name all over the net. Sheesh! It’s not like they could have possibly known I was a self-obsessed glory hound.
Ok, back to the site, back the fame, and back to the baby steps mentioned in the topic.
I want timstotz.com to be good. The little site that could. But really, screw all that! I want it to be ranked high! Now! I don’t know what my childhood trauma is, but I really want—well—to be listed at all, but also to be listed high!
So you see, my first step is not to be the most famous guy ever, but to be the most Famous Tim Stotz ever.
Then I want to be a fireman. Or an astronaut.

The shout-out portion of the show.

I noticed that a lot of ‘blogs immediately devolve into a forum to say hulloo to all the bloggers’ friends. Well, mine didn’t do that immediately. Nope. It took like 4 or so posts before that happened. So here it goes:
Melinda and Tracey are stupid-dumb-dookey-heads.
No really. [Beats on chest.] Nothing but love for the production crew down Insight-way, all up in the hizzy.
Needy? Yeah, they’re a little needy…moaning about the fleeting stardom after their mention vanished off the home page of timstotz.com. Sorry, girlies, them’s yer 15.
And it’s not like you even got bumped for anything remotely cool. If you look now, there’s just a mention of a guy named Ray Bolger, and a picture of a girl who’s a little tall for her age (and dating can be so awkward at that stage anyway). I guess that’s the way it goes. That Tim guy is kind of a dick, right? So enjoy your mention on this blog. That’s pretty good, right? It’s not “home page” good, but it’s better than a kick in the grills. I guess being on the home page was like a movie (but not a great one—more “Johnny Mnemonic” than “The Matrix”); then being on this blog would be kind of like a Judith Light/Meredith Baxter-Burney vehicle on the Lifetime Network. I admit that joke was kind of forced, but I wanted search engines to find the keywords: “Judith Light, Meredith Baxter-Burney, and Lifetime.”

Well that wasn’t so bad. I did the obligatory shout out (although not a complete one; some of my posse are in witness protection and junk). Now what other obligatory blog type thing is next? Hmmmm, incessant whining about women and /or waxing rhapsodic about them when I’m dating one? Time will tell.

Now, I’m going to hunker in the bunker and [dramatic chord] create ART!

Remember me…at least until Monday. Or like on Friday if you and Mike are downtown, and, well, I’m pretty sure my odor will linger around the Insight Offices. Sorry about that.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Defend Your Existence.

Nobody minds if I say a few words about causes célèbres, do they?
When did every little choice you make have to be defended, every action a definitive moment, every step a potentially decisive blow that may make you one of them instead of us? Engaging in any action makes you a poster child for said action automatically—an ardent, devout worshiper. What up with that?
Fer instance. I watch the carbs. It works for me pretty much. I’ve lost weight; I don’t get heartburn anymore, and I generally feel better. But every time someone finds out I’m not eating pounds of pasta, or bread, people freak. Ultimately, why do you care what I eat? Do you have some Corsican twin like ability to taste what I taste?
You can almost watch the imaginary podium spring from the floor, as they expect me to bitterly retaliate with a slew of facts about—I don’t know—meat or some shit. It’s not enough that I’ve always been fond of meat, and the other low fat stuff didn’t seem to be working. Note the word “Seem.” I don’t have a double blind study. Hell, it could all be psychosomatic. Who cares? It’s still working.
So here comes the litany of facts I don’t want to hear—again, then the “everybody knows” arguments come flying. So yes, everybody knows that if you eat meat your kidneys will explode, your cholesterol will elevate through the roof and you will die. Just like Dr. Atkins himself. If he wouldn’t have suffered sever head trauma, he would have had a heart attack for sure. Yes, Mr. or Mrs. fat Midwesterner, please tell me how everyone knows the low carb doesn’t’ work. I am way more inclined to believe your sagacious almost high-school-level education vs. New England journal of medicine . Just like everyone knows the water in the northern hemisphere goes one-way down a drain, and the southern hemisphere is the opposite way. By the way, I grow more and more tired of shit everybody knows. Ok, so KNOW it. Great. What type of Dysfunction compels you to recite facts whether people want to hear them or not? It’s a type of Tourette's isn’t it?
So, sorry if I sound a bit defensive, or bristly. I have to point out that I do not share a converse care in what you eat. You want to Carb load, be my guest. I’m not even gonna come back with a rejoinder about some potential negative side effect of eating too many carbs. I don’t care. See a trend? I wish you no malice, no matter what you eat. No rage. I may find the irony in you telling me I’m going to die from malnutrition as you stuff a Twinkie down your gullet, but I’m a fan of irony—see no malice. Just kind of an appreciation of the cosmic situation.
Can you see the distance between deciding to stop drinking soda, and writing a manifesto against flour? I also don’t have pamphlets or any propaganda. Even though I’m doing Atkins, I’m not even saying it’s right, or better. It’s working for me…but as I said before, I don’t have hard data. Why would I? I spend my free time, I don’t know, masturbating.
Ok so if random passers by were gushing facts about carbohydrates out of love, genuine fear for my health…that’s ok. Actually kind of sweet. But it comes from the moral, or intellectual high road. Or just good old-fashioned superiority. I read the book. I gave it a try. I like it. Why do you care if I don’t want to eat the bun on my Cheeseburger? Why, god, Why?
Give me a damn break. I just want to eat in peace, without explaining myself to you—I don’t owe you anything. Just leave me alone.
Besides, I’m too tired from having to defend my choices in regards to using the Mac instead of PC, being an Atheist in a Puritanical zealot factory of a town, disliking music I’m supposed to hold in reverence—Bob Dylan for instance, being a male who hates sports (and Sports Bars), thinking that real work is more valuable than tidying my work area, and oh, hell the list goes on, but that’s another entry. You know screw this low carb thing. It’s too hard to hide from people. I’ll just take “Requiem for a Dream” size doses of diet pills.

Back by popular demand

While I was getting timstotz.com first started (not that it’s finished now. I have all the Ones in place, but I’m still waiting on some Zeros that are on backorder), I dummied up a page real quick-like. I threw some different types of files on the server to check a few things: speed, compatibility, if I remembered how to use GoLive or not.
I didn’t really have any images on my laptop because all my fancy high falutin’ design stuff was on external hard drives, so I grabbed pretty much the only image I could find: a Hallowe’en pic of my friend Jason in a Gorilla suit, playing the bongos, and me in a pirate costume.
Well, despite not being done, timstotz.com has a basic skeleton up I’m pretty proud of. So I emailed all my friends and asked their opinions. Everybody was ok with the page, but many of them asked, “Where’s the Pirate?”
Flattering? Sure. Nice to know my friends enjoy the drunken pirate version of me.
Disheartening? Damn Straight! I worked hard on that page. “Where’s the Pirate?” is the only comment you have?
So here’s the bad news. I think Pirate Tim fits into timstotz.com about as well as wearing that costume would fit into my day-to-day life.
But my ‘Blog is a different sitch.

Two little footnotes:
1. Yeah, it’s quite possible that the peoples really want to see Jason in the monkey suit. ‘Cause, hey: Monkey! And who doesn’t like bongo-playing monkeys? I don’t want to meet the cold-hearted bastard whose heart pumps piss.
2. Between the Pirate pic, and the Crazy Backwards Pants Pic, I may not come off, how should I say it, “Straight.” But I am. Hear that, Ladies?

So, thanks for reading the hardest working blog in Show Businesses.

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