Sunday, 28 September 2008
Saturday, 27 September 2008
Nine Trades proposal
My intention with my art practice has been to create objects and installations that posit a variety of alternative belief systems. The work employs an obscure strategy of camp and deadpan humour to invoke the strange and the marvellous. I see my practice in general as being a form of collage, bringing together seemingly incongruous elements to create new meanings. Art happens from what would previously be dismissed. Recently I have used writing and design as a way to communicate my ideas. This has been done through critical writing for my blog or for The List magazine, or through design work for the Yuck ‘n Yum fanzine.
Since 2003 I have worked as a customer service advisor at the Halifax / Bank of Scotland call centre in Dundee. Initially this was on a part-time basis during my Fine Art degree, before I increased my hours to near enough full-time after graduation. While completing the postgraduate MDes course in Design I moved back to part-time hours, then again back to full-time once I had completed that course.
Thursday, 25 September 2008
Tuesday, 23 September 2008
Talk about dippy, my hubbie must take the biscuit. He suffered a massive head injury whilst working on an oil rig six years ago, and has been in a persistent vegetative state ever since. The silly sausage doesn't even know what day it is!
Noreen Glanshood, Yeovil
Monday, 22 September 2008
Had a weekend off from blogging. Safe to say that Saturday's NEON gig was a resounding success for the DJs at least. We took over a posse of 7 people, all of whom had a wonderful time, and although the event itself could hardly be called busy (an audience of about 7!) it was still nice to play records over a decent PA. Meanwhile when it came to freebies the NEON entourage were spoiled rotten.
Having arrived at about 8, we headed straight to the restaurant just in time to get in an order of food from the kitchen staff who were all about to finish their shift. I ordered shark on a bed of beetroot, and sank rather a lot of wine. After a long and debauched party late into the night, it was time for a huge cooked breakfast and a day spent soaking up the sun in the grounds of the hotel. Later it was time for another huge meal, this time a Sunday roast of wild boar with Yorkshire pudding, washed down with a good few bottles of a local organic brew called the Black Isle Blond. All in all we were all treated like royalty and it's just a shame that things like that don't happen every weekend.
Friday, 19 September 2008
After tanning a six-hour shift of overtime at the bank tomorrow (double time PLUS vouchers for this brief period of public reassurance, not that anyone is really too bothered) I'll be off to Dalwhinnie on NEON business. Ought to be good fun, and here's hoping for a successful venture out into the wilderness.
Thursday, 18 September 2008
Proposal for a new HBOS/Lloyds TSB corporate logo, created between calls
When I'm not a high-flying superhero, I have a humble day job working for the HBOS, a bank that's been in the news a fair bit over the last 24 hours. Here's a short selection of highlights from the day's reportage:
Pink seems to be the colour at Britain's new banking giant.
Lloyds TSB chairman Sir Victor Blank looked suave in a blue shirt, white collar and cuffs and pink tie. A tanned Eric Daniels, Lloyds chief executive, also chose a pink tie. While HBOS chief executive Andy Hornby, who looked like he could do with a long kip, sported a pink shirt.
The trio sat behind a banner reading "Lloyds TSB: For the journey", lets hope they're sitting comfortably because it looks like they'll be in for a long ride.Mr Hornby, who the market refers to as a 'grocer who happens to run a bank' after moving from Asda to Halifax in 1999, looked anxious throughout the meeting and let Sir Victor and Mr Daniels take charge.
Didn't help that we had a 30-odd year old shelf stacker in charge - a bank trying to sell mortgages on strategies based on selling tins of beans. And anybody who dared to point out the inherent risks (e.g. Benny Higgins) was politely asked to leave.
Greedy b*ggers. I hope Andy felt the hit buying up all those shares earlier this year. He won't though, it'll be those of us who helped create his wealth who'll suffer, as always.
(bigjamesie, Guardian business blog)
Shares in the troubled bank HBOS are up and down like a manic-depressive. It is tempting to assume that the brokers doing the buying and selling are every bit as febrile. Indeed, a study of 26 successful New York brokers from 2000 does suggest they are distinctly flaky.
They had high levels of depersonalisation (feeling detached from one's surroundings) and a staggering two-thirds were depressed. There were similarly high levels of anxiety and sleeplessness. The more they earned, the more likely they were to have these problems. Twice daily, they consumed both alcohol and an illegal substance (mostly cocaine). For relaxation, they chose solitary pursuits: jogging, masturbation and fishing were common.(Oliver James, A Psychological Diagnosis of the Banking Crisis, The Guardian)
Tuesday, 16 September 2008
Sunday, 14 September 2008
In the lonely room of his aunt's house, Jude sat watching the cottage of the Widow Edlin as it disappeared behind the night shade. He knew that Sue was sitting within its walls equally lonely and disheartened; and again questioned his devotional motto that all was for the best.
He retired to rest early, but his sleep was fitful from the sense that Sue was so near at hand. At some time near two o'clock, when he was beginning to sleep more soundly, he was aroused by a shrill squeak that had been familiar enough to him when he lived regularly at Marygreen. It was the cry of a rabbit caught in a gin. As was the little creature's habit, it did not soon repeat its cry; and probably would not do so more than once or twice; but would remain bearing its torture till the morrow when the trapper would come and knock it on the head.
He who in his childhood had saved the lives of the earthworms now began to picture the agonies of the rabbit from its lacerated leg. If it were a "bad catch" by the hind-leg, the animal would tug during the ensuing six hours till the iron teeth of the trap had stripped the leg-bone of its flesh, when, should a weak-springed instrument enable it to escape, it would die in the fields from the mortification of the limb. If it were a "good catch," namely, by the fore-leg, the bone would be broken and the limb nearly torn in two in attempts at an impossible escape.
Almost half an hour passed, and the rabbit repeated its cry. Jude could rest no longer till he had put it out of its pain, so dressing himself quickly he descended, and by the light of the moon went across the green in the direction of the sound. He reached the hedge bordering the widow's garden, when he stood still. The faint click of the trap as dragged about by the writhing animal guided him now, and reaching the spot he struck the rabbit on the back of the neck with the side of his palm, and it stretched itself out dead.
Saturday, 13 September 2008
Thursday, 11 September 2008
Only to recount this much:
the antibiotics are working and I'm a lot less itchy and sore
had a Yuck 'n Yum meeting earlier that went alright
I'll be DJing lots this weekend, at NEON tomorrow at the Art Bar (on my own and without drinking) and on Saturday for CFS at the Union
I need to start getting a proposal together for the Nine Trades project over the next couple of days
reading Jude the Obscure, intermittently
just watched the original version of Funny Games for the first time, wasn't too impressed with it
finally getting the H.P. Lovecraft op-art poster back from the framers tomorrow
I'll be posting more over the next few days, maybe when my heart's a little more in it.
Tuesday, 9 September 2008
It's not very often that I post music links, but here goes. This mix from the old CBS (R.I.P) has been on regular rotation round these parts over the past few months. It's been especially good for soundtracking dinner parties, not that I would condone such behaviour.
aratkiLo - Exotika mix : LINK just make sure you can navigate your way around the Megaupload site to find it.
MANASYT & BETA EVERS: Devotion
CARTER TUTTI: Torn Window
SHEMALE: The Cursed Ship
ENEMA & GEJONTE: Odensbacken
COCTEAU TWINS: Ivo
FAD GADGET: Diminished Responsability
MATTHIAS SCHUSTER: An Rah Robeel
ANTENA: Bye Bye Papaye
NOVA HUTA: Soft End (Instr. Version)
PHALANGIUS: Train Robbery
DAVID BOWIE: Art Decade
DEATH IN JUNE: 13 Years Of Carrion
MARIO PAECH: Palma De Mallorca
THE THE: Soul Mining
CHROMATICS: The Killing Spree
SHRIEKBACK: Faded Flowers
ANDREW HORREY: Personal Surrender
LINDA DI FRANCO: My Boss
Monday, 8 September 2008
"Pride knows no pain!"
Just in time for tomorrow's big interview about the Nine Trades project I've developed a really vicious allergic reaction to my hair dye. The scalp's ever so sore, and the skin on my face has turned all blotchy and cracked. It feels like someone tipped a jug of acid over my head, and as you can see from the photo it looks a bit like that too. Now it's a week on antibiotics and a pledge that I'll stick to the au naturel look from here on in.
Why is it I always get the fuzzy end of the lollipop AKA the shit end of the stick?
Sunday, 7 September 2008
Friday, 5 September 2008
Last night I watched a very low-grade horror film called Rat Man that the DVD rental people had sent me in error. While wasting time on Facebook updating my status as the trailers were playing, I transcribed a line spoken onscreen at that moment.
The following exchange took place on the wall of my online profile:
Ben: how much do you know about about parapsychology?
Rachael: That is SO SO bizarre! I picked up a book in the library this morning about parapsychology. Weird....
Ben: It was a random phrase . That's some nice synchronicity right there!
So how much do YOU know about parapsychology? Here is a handy LINK to fill you in.
Thursday, 4 September 2008
Regular visitors to this site may be aware of my interest in the strange case of the crying boy paintings. Anyway this morning a Bragolin reproduction of my very own arrived in the post from France. It will hang there on the wall of my study silently waiting for the flames to take a hold.
Wednesday, 3 September 2008
Tuesday, 2 September 2008
Meanwhile the Guardian website seems to have discovered Italo disco: LINK, and I just couldn't resist stirring it up in a brazen attempt to secure NEON some free publicity.
Monday, 1 September 2008
Exciting news indeed for NEON as on Saturday 20th September we're booked to play at the Inn in Dalwhinnie in an all-expenses paid disco junket where we'll be wined and dined before unleashing a selection that may or not fit with the venue's music policy of "cooool, ambient vibes, thick languid beats, triphop."
Anyway, this is their rather swish website.