Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Sounding Machine

The Sounding Machine, my full length collection of poetry is available for order from Accents Publishing.

The Sounding Machine

Accents Publishing

Friday, January 6, 2012

The Volta

Ring in the New Year with a wonderful new poetry site:

Contributing editors include Susan Briante, Laynie Browne, Julie Carr, Don Mee Choi, Noah Eli Gordon, John Keene, Dawn Lundy Martin, J. Michael Martinez,  Farid Matuk, Sawako Nakayasu, Chris Nealon, Brandon Shimoda, Cedar Sigo, Johanna Skibsrud, and Cathy Wagner.

The Volta is home to the following:

FRIDAY FEATURE, a weekly in-depth review of a recent poetry book, 
starting with a review of Christine Deavel's Woodnote by Sara Renee Marshall.
With Reviews Editors Noah Eli Gordon, John Melillo, and Daniel Moysaenko.


MEDIUM, a weekly video or poemfilm by a poet, 
starting with a new video of Rae Armantrout.
WIth video editors Julia Cohen, Patrick Culliton, Kate Greenstreet, 
Max Greenstreet, Laura Mullen, and Mathias Svalina.


EVENING WILL COME, a monthly journal of poetics, 
with new pieces for January by Shane McCrae, Rusty Morrison, Boyer Rickel, & Elizabeth Robinson.
With continuing contributing editors Rosa Alcalá, Nathan Brown, Brian Foley, 
Tim Johnson, Dorothea Lasky, Summer Robinson, and Evie Shockley.


THEY WILL SEW THE BLUE SAIL, a monthly journal of poetry, 
with new poems by Noelle Kocot, Susan Briante, & Harmony Holiday


TREMOLO, featuring a single interview with a poet each month, 
with a revamped interview with Tyrone Williams,
and Andy Fitch also on board as an interviews editor.


The Volta will also host a NEWS page on our tumblr site, for poetry-related items of interest.
With Oren Silverman and Nathaniel Otting as news editors as well.


Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Giant Smiley Emoticon

Cover of my full-length poetry collection soon-to-be-released from Accents Publishing!

The Sounding Machine.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

gizmon-Half D

I got this little charmer recently. It's the gizmon-Half D. It's a mini-digi that evokes the Olympus Pen. I haven't had a chance to do much more than run through it's basic settings, but I think with more time, I may just become smitten. It scores quite a few points for cuteness alone.

This photo courtesy of gizmon-half-d-gizmon-f gives a sense of its size.

Here's the deets from the wonderful Four Corner Store

Gizmon 'Half D' Digital Camera

From the imagination of the crew at Gizmon comes that Half-D, a mini sized digital camera in the spirit of the original Olympus Pen. Now available in the US exclusively at Four Corner Store, the Half-D is ready for it's debut in the American market. 10 color modes, 3 shooting variations creating both video and stills, all in just 35 grams. 2 Megapixel CMOS Sensor, variable ISO, and a great 1.5 inch LCD screen, making this little camera as easy to use as it is fun. Check out the video below for sample of the 10 color modes. (Comes with Camera, gift box, and English users manual and USB Cable)
  • Image sensor : 2 million pixel CMOS sensor
  • Lens : f = 3.8mm, F2.6, 0.5m ~ ∞
  • Mount : Magnet mount ring
  • Focus : Focus Free
  • LCD Display : 1.5" TFT LCD
  • Exposure compensation : ± 3.0 (1.0EV step)
  • ISO sensitivity : AUTO / ISO 100 / 200 / 400
  • White balance : Auto
  • Self-timer : 10 seconds, 20 seconds
  • Recording Pixels Still : 1600 × 1200 (Standard 4:3), 1200 × 1200 (Square 1:1), 800 × 1200 (Half)
  • Video : VGA @ 30fps with voice recording
  • Color Mode : Standard / Vivid / Sepia / Monochrome / Bimo / Yellow / Biyori / Moriyama / Cross Process / Color Noise
  • Memory : Internal memory (16MB DDR)
  • Micro SD card up to 32GB Micro SD card is not included.
  • Auto power off : 30 seconds, 1 minute, 3 minutes
  • Other Features : microphone, Tripod mount, continuous shooting capability, a PC camera function
  • File Format : JPEG / AVI
  • Language settings : English, Japanese, Chinese
  • Supported OS : Windows XP / Vista / 7 / Mac OSX / Linux
  • Interface : USB 2.0
  • Power : Lithium Ion Battery
  • Dimension : (W) 64mm × (H) 40mm × (T) 16mm
  • Weight : 35g  
Here are the 10 color modes:

 Cross Processing
 Color Noise

The semester is almost over, and I have a feeling I'm going to be spending some time with this little gem. 

And oh, it takes video too:

Saturday, November 12, 2011

news from imaginary friend press



Don't Call it a Comeback!

Because we never really left. We just are new and haven't had many people hear about our wonderful selves. We also didn't have a whole lot of new news happening either.

We do now though! Imaginary Friend Press is thrilled, nay, ecstatic to announce three forthcoming books by three incredible authors. (The adjective button was stuck, we think.) We are very proud to have Tom C. Hunley, Keith S. Wilson, and Patty Paine joining the Imaginary Friend Press family. There will be more as these stories develop.

Monday, October 17, 2011

One of the many, many wonderful things about teaching at a school of art and design!

VCUQatar students design cover for Anthology on Contemporary Arabian Gulf Poetry

VCUQatar students design cover for Anthology on Contemporary Arabian Gulf Poetry

Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar students have designed the cover for Gathering the Tide: An Anthology of Contemporary Arabian Gulf Poetry, the anthology was supported in part by the Qatar Foundation Undergraduate Research Experience Program (UREP) grant.
Gathering the Tide presents a diverse and exciting collection of poems by poets from Qatar, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates. A handful of anthologies represent theMiddle East in general, or individual Middle Eastern countries; however, this is the first English language collection that presents the poets of the Gulf region. The anthology will invite readers into the rich and vibrant world of theArabian Gulf, while making available the important literary work being undertaken by the poets of this region.
Assistant Professor and Assistant Director of Liberal Arts & Sciences Patty Paine Gibbons and Adjunct Professor Samia Touati Dietz of VCUQatar, with Assistant Professor Jeff Lodge, formerly of VCUQatar and now of VCU Richmond, edited Gathering the Tide, while VCUQatar graphic design students Nawar Al-Mutlaq, Aisha Al-Naama, Al Hussein Wanas, and Ameera Makki created the cover design. All four students graduated in May 2011.
The graphic design students became involved as part of a class (Print II), that is run as a collaborative workshop. Students were given the opportunity to choose a project based on affinity for a particular subject matter, and “the students associated with the anthology were enthusiastic supporters of Gibbons and the anthology,” said Law Alsobrook, assistant professor of Graphic Design.
The project ran as a three-week project wherein the students had to interview the client (Gibbons, in this case), and conceptualize not only the cover, but other collateral materials for the project. “After interviewing the client and doing their own research about poetry and anthologies, the students then had brainstorming sessions as part of their process in arriving at their cover. I know that there was interest in Arabic calligraphy from the outset and so a good bit of research and experimentation went into that direction, among others,” added Alsobrook.
“Working with the students of Print II as part of a collaborative experience, I am continually amazed at what a few students can do in such a short period of time. It is truly remarkable to see students galvanized by both subject matter and the ability to work with each other on a topic they find interesting. It is what education is all about, when you see the transformative power of design education in action as students become professional designers before your eyes as they mature and change with each project,” said Alsobrook.
“Giving students the freedom to propose design/visual solutions enables them to express themselves and manifest the cumulative learning from all courses and all professors in the University,” said Muneera Spence, chair of the graphic design department. “In this case the students had just had a workshop with Iraqi calligrapher and designer Wissam Shawkat, also had experienced courses with Gibbons and various Graphic Design faculty. Besides these influences, the students supported each other, merged their creativity, and in this seamless manner brought forth this very successful and inspirational cover design.”

“I was awed and humbled by the commitment the student’s made to designing this cover, and by the cover itself which captures beautifully the essence of the anthology. They worked extremely hard and the cover they created is a work of art unto itself,” said Gibbons.
Students in VCUQatar literature classes first identified the need for a comprehensive collection of Arabian Gulf poetry, and the creation of the anthology was supported in part by a Qatar Foundation Undergraduate Research Experience Program (UREP) grant. VCUQatar students (now alumni) Fatima Mostafawi, Hend Mubarek Aleidan, Sara Marwan Al Qatami and Aisha Khalid Al Naama made invaluable contributions to the creation of the anthology.
UREP seeks to promote “Learning by Doing” and “Hands-On” mentorship activities as effective methods for undergraduate education. Gathering the Tide was a UREP project for the first year of the project. The editors spent the next two years turning it into a full length manuscript. The anthology features an introduction by David Wojahn, renowned poet, essayist and editor.
The hard cover edition of the anthology will be released shortly and the paperback edition will be released in December 2011. A two-day book launch event with readings and panels in slated for February or March of 2012.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Positively Negative, or the I'm terrible at titles post

I've been posting all the negatives I've been working with on Flickr. If you're interested in looking through them, you kind find them here:

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Oh, Happy Day!

Thank you judge Lisa Williams. And thank you Katerina Stoykova-Klemer, founding editor of Accents. 

When I spoke with Katerina on the phone, I felt an immediate kinship and left the conversation certain that I had found the perfect home for this ms. I'm super excited to work with the Accents team, and am really stoked that The Sounding Machine could very well be out in time for AWP.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Fimo is Primo!

My friend Felicity came over the day, and we were feeling crafty so we got out the Fimo clay.
Felicity is having a baby in October, so she made these really cool photo holders that spell out "baby."

 We made a couple camera shaped magnets, too. I love the little flower that Felicity put in her lens.
 I mounted these on the wall with double-sided tape. I like them because I can easily change the photos.

Here's everything we made, ready to go into the oven. 

Monday, August 8, 2011

Project Summer and Super 8 was bad.

I spent a fair amount of time working on a grant project this summer. I think, bit by bit, we're making good progress. This project takes me pretty far out of my comfort zone. We're turning Qatari oral folk tales into a series of comics and illustrated stories. There are 5 faculty members and 9 students working on this project. Two of the faculty teach English, one teaches linguistics, one teaches art, and one teaches graphic design. The students are mostly from graphic design, but we also have students from interior, fashion and painting and print making.

The project has forced me to learn about sequential art, it's giving me a chance to work closely with students outside the English classroom, and I'm learning a great deal about Qatari culture. All great things. Not being expert in all aspects of this project makes me anxious though, no doubt it has something to do with the undeniable fact that I'm a control freak.

Anyway, here are some images of work in progress/early drafts:

I'm still working on the negative recovery project. The latest batch of negatives I'm working with are from New York in the 1920's.

Here's a couple:

To balance all this visual work, I've been writing, writing, writing. Mostly poetry, but also an essay called "Facebook: The Tyranny of Knowing."

What else....  Oh, we watched Super 8 last night. It was 33.3% Goonies, 33.3% War of the Worlds, 33.3% Transformers, and 100% bad.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Evolution of a Photo Bomb

 Just taking a photo of Ernie....
 Uh oh.
 Ernie? Nope, can't say that I've seen him.
 Friends again.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Book By Its Cover

I got the book cover for the anthology from Ithaca/Garnet today.

Edited by Patty Paine, Jeff Lodge and Samia Touati

With an introduction by David Wojahn

The cover art was designed by 4 VCU Qatar students: Nawar Al-Mutlaq, Aisha Al-Naama, Al Hussein Wanas, and Ameera Makki

The anthology has gotten some nice "advance praise."

This is the first book to bring together a truly representative sampling of Gulf and Omani poetry and to give each poet sufficient space to showcase several works and not just the one iconic piece. Known names sit alongside new ones to deepen our appreciation of their artistic production. Set within the context of recently defined nation-state borders, these poems address a critical moment in the construction of national identities. Essential reading not only for lovers of poetry, but also for all who want to understand the role that the lyrical arts are playing in these rapidly transforming cultures.
                                                                                                                                                                                                     --miram cooke

Poetry anthologies are often mistaken for anthropologies. But Gathering the Tide is a celebration of art as common denominator of what is best in all of us: plurality, beauty, intense individuation. These are poems of representation and becoming, narrative and lyric, declaration and mysticism. They go beyond the cliche of breaking stereotypes and reach into art of the highest kind.
                                                                                                                                                                                                        --Fady Joudah

Assembled in this anthology is a symphony of ruminations and reveries. Here, voices old and new, luminous and innovative converge, and a powerful tide emerges. An astonishing gathering!
                                                                                                                                                                                                     --Nathalie Handal

The back cover is going to change a bit. It will have the advance praise "blurbs" rather than our bios.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Berlin 1930-1950

I processed over 200 negatives. They came from Berlin, and were taken sometime between 1930 and 1950. It was a lot of work, but each time I clicked invert and the image revealed itself was a moment of wonder and discovery.

Here are some of my favorite images:

This seems to be a mess hall. I like the utilitarian furniture, the white, round globes overhead, and the  light pouring in the windows. I love how each plate has a sausage on it. In my mind I saw the two men going plate to plate placing a sausage on each as the heavily decorated officer in the painting loomed over them.
All those young military men, the road vanishing into the horizon, the shadow branches creeping under some of the soldier's heavy, leather boots. There is something haunting about this photo.
 An iconic image. A young soldier with his parents, small children and new baby.
This might be my favorite photo of all. I love the flowers arranged in sharp angles, the tangle of roots magnified by water in the vase. I love the cocktail glasses, half full, the simplicity of one orange on a plate. The giant light fixture overhead is wonderful, particularly because all that light threw those wonderful shadows on the wall. And the couples. How not to like them? So young, and happy--and look at that wonderful hand placement, and how they all are linked together.

I love the sharp angle of the wall and how it frames the scene below. The foreground of the photo is linked to the background by the bridge. Look at all those squat buildings punctuated by steeples, and how the town gives way to open land. And look at those tiny specks in the sky; birds, frozen mid-flight.

I just got a huge lot of negatives from San Francisco 1950-1960, and NY, 1920's. I can't wait to see what they yield.