Wednesday, November 9, 2022


When I was a kid, a lot of my heroes were mad scientists. People were always telling them that they were meddling in things that God meant for us to leave alone, and they would go and do it anyway. The result would be some kind of shitstorm, but somehow the world was left better in the smoldering aftermath. Human knowledge was expanded, and for a while, things sure got weird and exciting. And without that there’s no story, or movie, and life gets boring, and there’s nothing worse than that.

As an adult—a senior citizen, dammit!—I approach art, and life, like a mad scientist.

For example, I had all these old collages that recently emerged from the depths of my garage. It would have been enough to just scan them and show them off, but there were unexplored possibilities. . .

Why not mess around with them in GIMP and see what happens?

It did it, and the results accompany these words.

Way back in the 20th century, a guy named John Naisbitt published a book called Megatrends and introduced the concept high tech and high touch. The book is now largely forgotten, but high tech/high touch is still valid in the current era.

After hours of staring into a glowing screen I need to get up and move around. I tell people that it’s part of my exercise program, but it's probably more that I’m restless, in body as well as mind. It's probably why my art tends to be on the messy side. High touch in the age of high tech.

With GIMP, I like to randomly mess with things, screw with the contrast, colors, and filters. If I’m lucky it goes BOINK! and some kind of neopsychedelic electronic fuzz explodes across the picture plane, or at least some distortion that defies conventional aesthetics.


I’ve called myself an aesthetic terrorist in moments of divine inspiration. Or was that desperation?

Sometimes it smooths out the way the diverse elements being cut up are jammed together, even though I enjoy the shock effect of all the seams showing like a Frankenstein monstrosity. Maybe it can help in using these things for illustrations, book covers, or something useful.

A wannabe mad scientist has to earn a living . . .


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