Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Saturday walk on Dragon street.

Three day weekends go so fast.   Not sure why, maybe it is the expectation of accomplishing something with the extra time, but occasionally you actually complete your plan.  This memorial weekend was low key for us, no over planning, no huge expectations, just rewind the creative juices and do a little exploring of Dragon Street in Dallas.

Dragon St is the intersection of Design and Creativity.  Not necessarily a unique concept but here the execution is inching toward “spot on.”  We set out to visit the PDNB Gallery to view the “From Russia With Love” photography exhibit.  Featured are the photographs of 7 Russian photographers including Mikhail Dashevsky.  Mikhail is a scientist, a PhD like Elena and like Elena has seen more than a little historic change in the Moscow scene.  I was excited to see how this experienced shaped his photographic vision.  I wasn’t disappointed.  So if you live in Dallas, visit the PDNB Gallery and share the experience.  Pay particular attention to “Greetings to Mr. Bresson!, 1995,” a genuine slice of life at a farmers market.  Also study the faces of the folks at the bus stop.  Really neat stuff.  You can see these pictures at pndb gallery.

Every visit to Dragon Street results in a discovery.  This time we spotted items outside a gallery that we learned were yarn sculpture (by artist K. Witta).  So, we walked back down Dragon St. to check this out.  What a Hoot!  You just have to see it.  Here are a few pictures, but they don’t begin to do justice to this art.  All of this is in front of and inside the Mary Tomas Studio & Gallery.  Also, inside the gallery are some very interesting fused glass pieces.

All in all, Dragon St never disappoints.  Check it out, bring you camera and walk a bit, and talk a lot.  This is the friendliest street around. 

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Painting in photoshop - week 2

This week in Marie Otero class we used Art History brush, smudge tool and patterns.

Art History brush, background texture provided by Marie.

Art History brush

Smudge tool.

Smudge tool.

Painting with patterns. Original image from DeviantArt.

Art History brush, backgrounds modified with filters. Original image from DeviantArt.

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Russian kaleidoscope

I’m back from visiting Moscow & St. Petersburg, Russia. It feels like everything I saw and experienced is still rotating in my mind creating a kaleidoscope of colorful recollections.

Moscow: Construction everywhere…cranes in all directions and huge pits where wonderful bits of architecture previously existed.  The streets are dynamic, overcrowded with people and cars.  Eclectic, a melting pot of Federation and Western cultures. However, still a great mixture of old and new, people drinking beer openly and in large quantities.   Crazy traffic and more crazy traffic – but whenever you step on the road to cross the street everyone stops!  This is a huge paradigm shift – as recently as 3 years ago, crossing the road was an equivalent of committing suicide!
Construction and traffic in Moscow.

A monument to marshal Zhukov seems to be a part of traffic.

Ivan Fyodorov established Moscow Print Yard in 1564, now a neighbor with Bently store.

Lots of Georgian restaurants (even though Russia was at war with Georgia several years ago), Georgian people are very friendly and hospitable, I talked to one restaurant owner who said that now is the best time to visit Georgia - best rates, best food, wonderful cities an exotic culture, I think I’ll give this thought a try.

Georgian hinkali, to die for.

The best time to see Moscow is Sunday morning at 6 am. Then you can really enjoy the center of the city, its wide avenues and beautiful buildings without the human contamination.  Not that I have issues with humans, but Moscow has really become a melting pot of nationalities retaining their languages and customs.  When I lived here, Moscow was a melting pot but everyone embraced the host language.

Kremlin Tower.

Tsar canon, never shot a canon ball, just a decoration.

During May Holidays Moscow gets decorated.

St Petersburg: I lived in this city for 28 years and I love it with all my heart, but I never saw it looking as gorgeous as this time. The city was never built in a random way, from the first days of its foundation by Peter the Great, every street was designed as an architectural ensemble. And you can still see this, because St. Petersburg was lucky enough to become a “province” and not to experience reconstruction during the Soviet era. It was carefully preserved, and now it is a truly European city – clean, fresh, stylish with its roots in our history.
Moika river.

Moika river and Griboedov canal merge together.

Nikolsky cathedral.

Briges and rivers are decorated with metal grates.

St. Isaac cathedral.

He looks tired.