Make Art Make Money

So if you don’t know me let me fill you in on what I do in my spare time.  I read about 5 books a month.  One of the easiest ways to do that is to listen to books on tape.  I get all of my books on tape through audible.  It’s a good way to catch up on your reading while your getting paper work done or doing housework.

Anyway the book that I read this month was a book about Jim Henson called “Make Money Make Art.”  It’s kind of an esoteric title so let me explain this process.  Since most artists go scarcely unknown throughout their career, i.e. Vincent Van Gogh, Vivien Meier etc.  Artists are more or less kept in the dark from the public eye.  The artists that DO find a way to turn a profit on their art may actually defeat their art by letting the powers of commercialism overtake it and run with it to the extreme.  Jim Henson found a way to make his art while still retaining the highest artistic.

Being poor and making art is just a part of the process. Some people get stuck in it and never get out.  However eventually for those artists with a sense of entrepreneurship they can get their artworks to make money.  It goes in this formula:

Make art- Here you make art simply for arts sake.  You cannot turn a profit on it however you are just focusing on the quality of the art itself.  Making it fantastic, so good in fact that eventually nobody can afford to ignore you.

Make art make money:  Here your art begins to make money.  You may be forced to religated yourself to doing commercial work like Jim Henson did.  However eventually he used the money he made from commercials to fund his other ventures which brings us to the next and final part.

Make money make art: Most of Hensons’ productions were refined to a very fine quality.  He often put

In this book you learn entrepreneurship and how to manage a collective of artists while still getting the best work out of them.  I totally dug on this book and I think it is a great resource to artists.  Jim Henson was a total hippie.

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Freaks of Nature Presents: The Sword of Damocles

The freedom of potentiality is a looming dagger of anxiety
Contingent space separates me from the thin thread of becomming
The I am is not what it is soon to become
The flux of temporality surges me toward unforeseen fate
separated by the thin thread of possibility
What content holds a being I am not yet
This state to the next is sustained by the teathers of causality
This anguish of lamenting freedom of possibility hurls me blindly toward an immanent future unforeseen
A future with no conent
A voidness at my face which cannot be pierced
I am not what I will be
I am not what I was
Freedom demands I reinvent myself a new
In the contingent liberty death of existence becomes a real woe
The sword of damocles sways upon its tether
The prior dies and the subsequent is born
And having been is a with past I am
Sustaining its parasitic existence on the lonely island of my psyche
dead to all but itself
Who other than the subject can add value to its existence
The present exigence must die in past in order to be a found
Existence is constantly dying before my eyes
This is the melody of my humanity
The responsibility of life should be left to those
Who can let alone the itch
Of contingency
Stare down the spike of the sword
As it stares down at them
Life is a great fortune and great peril
For who would bare such fardels?
And to give this presence meaning
falls on me
Condemned to be free
My feet kick against the current
Hoping to hit upon land
It reaches out to something outside itself
Falls on nothing
We swim the ocean of nothingness until we drown
There the sword of anguish balances upon its string
Vanity of vanities

How I Turned A Bloody Paycheck Stub into Art

   This series was called “Bureau” because there were very specific conditions which needed to be in place during its creation. 

  These conditions were:

  • That each piece be assembled during business hours at an ordinary job
  •  Second that each object be created entirely from items found in a typical office

    I decided to pursue this series because, like most Americans in the middle class, I found myself in a cycle of conventional wage employment unable to escape in order to actualize my own life.  My identity was consistently being haunted by the specter of corporate management due to the fact that my actions were daily under their external control.   For eight hours a day I observed the object of my body  as an appendage of the corporation. Everything that I produced was the private ownership of the other.  I had for once experienced a form of soft slavery.  This alienation from the product of my labor caused me to realize that in order to actualize I had to re-establish a new identity the subject of which could not be this corporate entity. That is how I began this body of work. 

   I am including a few pieces which are actual invoices from the company I work at.  I shredded them and reassembled them.  This is an index of rebirth. It is meant to be the shedding off of the corporate image.  It is, instead, employee as the subject and not the object.  Another piece which I have included is the joining together of my own blood onto a real paycheck stub.  This exposure of my personal information is shared together with the exposure of the veins from my body.  Blood alone turns the wheels of history and this is shown through not only the exposure of the contents of my veins but the contents of my personal information.   The paycheck stub is also a symbol of  an event or experience.  Since the paycheck is only an object to represent metaphysical sequence of memories the personal blood that splatters on the face of the paper is the coming together of that material world and the metaphysical dimensions of memory.   

   These images are important because they not only reflect a deep personal history but because they are also a part of the history of the American working class.

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Letters From the Cubicle Farm

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The best days of our lives are being stolen from us. The pay that they give us will not even be a slight recompense to what they take.

The only thing more precious than gold is time.
hint: we never will get it back

Don’t ever dilute yourself into thinking that wage slavey (modern day employment) is some kind of business venture. You don’t make a profit off of your grind. Wage is a simple exchange, it is fixed and predetermined between you and your employer. Don’t ever forget it. Your pay day is just a per diem to ensure your return. Like the slave masters who give their slaves room and board. That’s all a wage is. Pittance. Don’t die so you can come back tomorrow.

Employer/Employee Dialectics: While the employee wants to do the least amount of work for the most pay the employer wants to get the most amount of work for the least pay.

We’ve been forsaken. To believe in the system that funnels us into passionless mundane jobs. The capitalist system needs complacent employees, that’s what schools were invented for, to train the next batch of rejects.

Good art can’t be made from the cubicle farm.  You have to escape, you have to deprogram yourself and learn to be creative again.  The system doesn’t want creativity, because creativity is a product of imagination.  Imagination is the enemy of the system, it demands subordination, it demands that it’s edicts be followed.

Why don’t people know they are slaves?

I think that Hollywood helps to perpetuate the false life.  For once in the history of humanity a class of people exists purely to facilitate ideology.  With all of their excessive glamour and ostensible lifestyles the entertainment industry has become the virtual life of so many middle class people.  We spend our lives obsessing over the pointless lives of these stars. Watching them religiously, vicariously living their lives and virtually interacting with them through our televisions and computers.

What would a world be like without hollywood or the entertainment industry?  
How would we spend our free time?  

Entertainment has become the new opiate of the masses.  It helps us to cope with the fact that we are, in essence…slaves.

On Finding Your Artistic Voice and Making an Impact on the World

“Talent is when you have something to say but genius is when you have something interesting say.”

The Elements of Artistic Style

Art is your medium of expression. It is the platform by which you communicate with the world. In a world where everybody is a winner it is really hard to tell if your work is ingenius or if your just being placated by your peers.  You may have plenty of talent but talent is the result of years of labor intense building upon your craft.  On top of that you may have focused too hard on the technical aspects of your work making your study far too systemic for exploration.  Style is essential to having an impact on the world.

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Be Recognizable:   

Artistic style is like a thumbprint, it is particular to the artist who created it. Your art will have to embody your personal character.

If you get to know the work of Dali or Picasso you begin to see an overall consistency within the body of work. If I see a painting  with long flowing penmanship, a dynamic attention to detail, a precise layering of paint, like an old masters work, along with strange phantasmagorical imagery, I know that I am looking at an art piece by Salvador Dali.

There should be a distinctness to you work that viewers can only trace back to you.

Study the Styles of Others:

The study of Art can be omnivorous! Keep a database of all your favorite artists.  That includes: musicians, painters, sculptors, philosophers, entrepreneurs or anyone that inspires you.  Most likely the way that they inspire you, in some way,contributes to your own personality.  If you follow the element of artistic style your personality will be woven into the fabric of your art piece and so will  all those who you emulate.

Broaden your Horizons:

In order to make your art a lasting and meaningful experience you yourself have to have lasting and meaningful experiences.  Artists take people out of their reality.  If you have vibrant experiences or dreams then your art will be vibrant too and people are drawn to vibrancy and beauty.

Draw Outside the Lines:  

Don’t focus solely on technique. In order to create you have to play around.  Have tons of fun.  Treat your work like play.  When you reach a level of mastery those dynamic elements will be toys for your amusement.   Now you can draw from your vast experiences and put things together like an erector set or legos.

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To explore the realm of the human experience I like to study Philosophy.  For me I want my art to be deep and thought provoking and nothing is more so than the study of philosophy.

 note:  You can draw from whatever you want whether it be entertainment or your own history.  You don’t necessarily have to study philosophy in order to have an amazing message in your artwork.  

When we think of philosophy most people think of conniving old men in togas engaged in discourse about ascertaining the absolute truth.  Philsopophy is actually quite modest.  It is the most efficient modelling of human reality that we have.  Philosophy for ages has been obsessed with trying to interpret the human experience and draws upon a wide array of knowledge like:

1. metaphysics: the study of abstract dimensions.

2. Logic: Rationality and reason.

3. Aesthetics: Beauty and Art.

4. Ethics: Questions of morality and how men should interact with others.

5. Epistemology: Study of the empirical world.

I feel philosophy helps me to make my art deeper and more thought provoking.  Regardless of what study you find interesting in your studies the message you are trying to convey should come out seamlessly in your artwork.  Art is a way for us to see things through the subject of another.  It takes us out of our solipsism and helps us to engage reality in a whole new way.

COOL Beans

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The Freaks of Nature: The Caliph of California

  Holding nothing back we bring you a rare interview with one of the leaders of one of those hypothetical “NO GO ZONES,” that Fox News “experts” keep blabbing on about.    

It just so happens that this particular community is a Caliphate.  A Caliphate is a form of an Islamic community lead by a Caliph who is kind of like a king.  That doesn’t sound too bad does it?

Anyway the ironic part is that this Caliph is located in California.  So I introduce to you…the Caliph of California.

Sincerely,
Dr. X (the man in the mask)

nogo

 

xoxo

 

Jesus Was a Communist

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    So forget this hippie laid back image of the Christ man.  Workers of the world unite cause this guy was a fucking marxist super hero.

  Jesus christ was a communist, everything that he taught aligns with what we would consider to be communism.  He advocated a classless society, he preached collectivism, he told rich people to give up their belongings to follow him and he abhorred the elite ruling class authority. Just face it Jesus was a total commie. 

So then why is it that Christianity is the go to ideology for evangelist anglo-saxon neo conservatives you ask?   Brainwashing.  If you actually read the teachings of Christ you’d find it very hard to use is as a way to teach people to selfishly seek their own personal egotistic advantage and gain. 

   Once the church realized that it could make money it did its best to  obfuscate the central teachings of Christ.  In this way throughout history the Christian ideology has been molded to fit the needs of many  political agendas of ruling elites.

   However when you stay true to the central doctrines of Christ’ teachings  You’ll find that there is no way he was into any individualism or wealth seeking.  In fact he said “it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than it is for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God,” (Mark 10:25)  And where was this kingdom of God you ask? 

  Jeebus constantly alluded to where the kingdom of god is: “the kingdom of god is in you” “The kingdom of God is in your midst,” “The kingdom of God is near.”  Where oh where could it be near to?  Planet xarblocks 6? No…The Kingdom of god is on fucking Earth. IT’S HERE! Sure Jesus sometimes got into some serious spiritual hippie shit but he was mainly concerned with bringing his communist manifesto to the material world and helping people in the material world (Matthew 25:35-40)  Marx saw that history was shaped by  material forces.  As technologies and markets changed so did economy and society.  From this struggle of people to coexist there eventually developed conflicts because where there were those that prospered off of those that suffered.  Always the upperclass leeched off of the lower class.  Jesus saw this and decided he would put a stop to it by making a commune of his own in a bronze age social experiment.  

   So this kingdom sounds pretty good huh?  How do you join the Christ club?   

     Jesus made it very clear how to get into his tight nit community of followers.  To enter into the christian community you had to renounce the private ownership of your goods. (Mark 10:21-25) If you were to ask Marx to boil down communism into one simple concept he would say the exact same thing as Jesus did, “abolition of private property.”  Jesus fucking hated private property just like marx!!! (Luke 14:33) 

     He  stood behind the proletariat in fact he was constantly alluding to the power inherent within the poor. Likewise Marx saw the working class as the “revolutionary class” because they were the class, in Marxs eyes, the held the power to use revolution as a means to achieve its own ends and install a dictatorship of the proletariat.  Christ talks about the tearing down of the upper class and raising a society where the “humble” rules instead of kings, (Luke 1:52.) He places power directly in the hands of the poor.  This new society would be collectivized where people who abandoned their possessions to enter into the kingdom were taken care of by the community.  (Acts 4:32) (Acts 2:44-50) I mean isn’t Acts 4:34-35 just another way of saying “From each according to his ability to each according to his need?  

  So basically if you want to be a part of the christ cliche you had to choose between following him or money, cause one cannot have two masters. It’s ironic that there is a Christian company called “Not of this world” misrepresenting the John 18:36 where christ says “My Kingdom is Not of this world.”  It’s ironic because it is an example of the market mediating Christian doctrine to promulgate it’s capitalist agenda and sell goods on the market.  If you think it’s funny your either a Christian or a Communist.  

Inventing Mythology: Constructing Cultural Identity with a Comic Book


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For the past two months I have been putting out a comic book in my home city of San Diego.  It has libidinal elements which fetishize it into commodity.  This disguises it among the myriad of market products.  It appears specialized, almost as if it comes from a cultural institution like a church or a political group.  It has specific lettering which mimics tribal and meso-american art and it mixes the symbols of the sacred with the profane.At first glance it would appear that this small leaflet is a reference to some sort of academic text; perhaps a legend, mythology or a manifesto.

A person might not immediately realize that these books don’t refer to any preexisting established narrative.  Despite being entirely fiction it gains it’s own authenticity simply through codifying itself within a framework of existing settings and symbols.  e.g.,  regions, traditions and historical peoples. In this way my comic book uses a narrative to distort the preexisting cultural elements as an attempt to generate its own ethos with the illusion of historicity.  It thus places the context of meaning within the these symbols it borrows. This would be ethnogenic as upon reading and referring the tale to the socially established codes which it refers  it would promulgate a cultural identity that had not previously existed.  This is coming from the premise that cultural identity temporalizes itself through historical narrative.

This implied historicity makes my comic a hyper real simulation of cultural identity.  Cultural identity is the result of interdependent forces that define roles, reward status, govern behavior and order power relations of its members.  Since the post modern person today adjusts ones social being to different contexts it is possible to introduce a new model which presents itself as  a pseudo identity without interfering with the normal social order.

I hope to write more on this later:

The History of San Diego: Part 2

Our ancient civilization has endured over the millennium.  These great lands and noble people have shaped the landscape of our histories. We have a distinctly San Diegan ethos which we must cultivate and let blossom.Here in its second installment is part 2 of the epic tale of the lands under the sacred sun.  These books honor the foundation of our culture and solidify our personal identity as San Diegans, setting us apart in solidarity as a people.  Here is the tale of Lord Ranchero Santa Fe and how he thought he could sit on high and thus be entitled as a “true” San Diegan.These stories instill us with a sense of our noble morality.  Forever shall the classics endure in the minds and hearts of our children as we pass them on to future San Diegans for generations to come.

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see more at:

http://www.davidthegreat.net

The Freaks of Nature Presents: The Capital Cow

I am an insane person. I am dedicating my youtube channel to only posting the strangest unnerving footage that my sick twisted mind can concoct. Rue the day I am paid for my bad ideas. We are the Freaks of Nature, we stepped out of society to challenge God at his own sadistic game.
The Capital Cow is a heart warming tale about a cow on his adventures on the farm. It’s one you and your kids will cherish for generations. It’s recommend that you watch this video while driving a motor vehicle.

Sincerely,
Dr. X

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Feed Your Demons: Suffering Makes Great Art

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The best art comes from suffering. 

Charles Bukowski was a raging Alcoholic and Hunter S. Thompson had a drug collection. Goethe was a hopeless womanizer and Kerouac had a thing for Benzedrine. William S. Burroughs had a Heroine habit and so did Jean Michel Basquiat and Kurt Cobain. There have been countless odes written to the loss of love and just as many rock ballads sung to the “One that got away.” For some reason deep emotional wounds generate a creative edge which allows someone to tap into their artistic reservoir. If your an artist it makes sense to turn your lemons into lemonade. There are many ways one can take advantage of these critical emotional states and mine them for all they are worth:

Heartbreak:
The feeling of  getting jilted by a romantic lover can be one of the most heart wrenching experiences ever. The energy that heartbreak releases comes from this lingering desire for the other person; you just can’t have them. It is very potent energy because it is an expression of love. In love we become physically addicted to the other person and when the person is gone it leaves an emptiness that needs to be filled. In that time it is essential that those moments spent yearning for the other person be put into artistic pursuits. One can feel oneself almost fueled by these intense emotions.banksy-heart-balloon-mural-design

I think being jilted is one of life’s most painful experiences

-Frank Sinatra

Death in the Family:
Much like the loss of heartbreak a death leaves a void that needs to be filled. The psychologist Elizabeth Kubler Ross said that we never really get over the death of a loved one but that we tailor our personalities to fit around the loss. Mourning is a lingering sadness that never goes away but becomes a part of you. Use these intense emotions to fuel your art. The Artist Arshile Gorky survived the Armenian Genocide and saw his loved ones killed before his eyes. After he suffered such a horrifying ordeal his abstract art was fueled by those tormenting memories. The paintings were genius but his suffering was so great he had to eventually take his life to escape his inner demons.

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Poverty:

Most artists start out and end penniless. Jackson Pollock was living off of a Government program which supported artists when he first started out. The musical genius Mozart had nothing at the end of his life and was buried in a paupers grave yet his music had became more ominous towards the end of his life and seemed to explode with a certain genius that would live on. The need for money propels any artist to push oneself toward the goal of attaining more of it.  Money is the fuel of survival in todays society, one simply cannot live without out.  Once you realize your art can fetch a little bit of money your obsession for money soon becomes an obsession for the art. The genius is the first to come and then the money.

Addiction
Addiction creates this strong desire for something outside yourself. Without that thing you crave there is this insatiable emotional energy that propels you towards it. It’s not so much the moments when one is under the influence but the times when one is coming off of the substance that creates the most emotional energy. Find a vice and use that energy to propel your art into something spectacular.

 

I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they’ve always worked for me.

-Hunter S. Thompson

note: A couple of things on vices-make sure your addiction is manageable. You can’t create art if you are strung out all the time.

Disease or Sickness:
Proust finished the end of his epic “In Search of Lost Time” as he was on his deathbed. Kafka didn’t even finish his novel “The Castle” and instead it was left unfinished. Frida Kahlo was in a horrible vehicular accident which left her constantly in pain. Viewing any of her paintings you share her pain in the same way. She frequently painted picture of herself  enduring horrible physical wounds.  You can tell right away that she was struggling with terrible inner demons. Usually when we suffer ills of the body we direct that energy inward and it turns into victimization or feeling sorry for oneself. Instead take that energy and put it into something artistic. Write about your experiences or (like Frida Kahlo) paint a picture of your torment.

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I don’t mean to be so morbid.  Every artist needs to realize how to use their powerful emotional states.   As an artist you are also an alchemist taking worthless metal and turning it into gold.  Go and do that right now. Use your powerful raw emotional energy to make gold.