When a Project Just Doesn’t Go As Planned.

Phase 1:
Kyle: “Hey, this will be unbelievably awesome”
Brad: “It wont work”
Kyle: “Sure it will!”
Result: FAIL

Phase 2:
Kyle: “Well, this wouldn’t be as awesome as the original plan, but it would still be pretty cool, and it lets us salvage some materials”
Brad: “I don’t think that would work”
Kyle: “Sure it will!”
Result: FAIL

Phase 3:
Brad: “Well, I guess we could just do it this way, it’s passable, and means we wouldn’t have wasted all this time…”
Kyle: “Yea! that will totally work!”
Result: FAIL

Phase 4:
Kyle: “Whatever, we’re artists…let’s just do this and BS our way out of it when people notice the shortcomings…hmmm…no, I refuse to go down that path, lets just burn it now, and never speak of this again so the world never finds out about our failure this winter”
Brad: “it’s on facebook, tee hee hee”
Kyle: expletives deleted

Why People Hate Art: Our SoOnCon 2011 Talk

I edited the talk down from 28 minutes into a much more focused 18 minute presentation. The other half will be posted shortly (well…eventually) but here is the meat of the talk.

If you want the background to this talk, and don’t feel like digging through my earlier posts, here is a brief summary of this talk and how it happened:

Brad Blucher and I were invited to give a talk at the TIFF Bell Lightbox for SoOnCon 2011.

The topic for our presentation was “why people hate art”. Using examples of things we have experienced first hand, we launched into an attack on the pervasiveness of obscurantism masquerading as deep insight within the art world.

Art is often nothing more than a footnote to a (poorly written) essay using invalid logic to make unsound arguments, all the while using technical and scientific terms inappropriately and without justification in an attempt to apply a veneer of rigour and profundity over their steaming pile of banal observations and utter nonsense.

This talk is a criticism of that tendency in the art world.

Illuminated Landscapes is Now Available in ebook Format.

Our Self-Published photobook, Illuminated Landscapes is now available in ebook format for your iPad or iPod or iWhatever.

Illuminated Landscapes can be found on the Blurb Book Store

Note: You can still get the 2-part PDF version of the book for free by sending us an email. (smile_takeapicture@ymail.com)

I know, I know…I probably shouldn’t be telling you about the free version while I’m pushing the paid version on you, I’m a terrible marketer, but yay! ebooks!

Now trees don’t have to die for you to have a copy of my book. Although if you like murdering trees, you can always pick up the paper version of our book. (I’d recommend the soft-cover version, it has a very shiny cover. I like shiny things.)

Tiff Talk Teaser

I mentioned my SoOnCon talk in several earlier posts.

I’m currently in the process of editing the footage from the actual talk. The full presentation was 28:50, just shy of the 30 minute allotment we were given. My goal is to remove the dead space and redundancies without taking away from the actual content or tone of the presentation. I want to deliver the complete talk, while taking up as little of your time as possible.

Here is a little teaser to hopefully whet your appetite:

My SoOnCon ReCap

Being given the chance to speak at SoOnCon is simply too good of an opportunity to pass up. Having that event take place at the TIFF Bell Lightbox makes the experience that much better.

The work that went in to getting ready for this talk will be the subject of another entry. This post is about the event itself.

I arrived an hour later than I had wanted to. I missed the first few talks. Alex Leitch had started by the time I entered the building, and I didn’t want to be ‘that guy’ who barges in half way through and disrupts everyone. Instead, I sat down in the hallway and put together my slide show.

I went for an extremely simple black-background-with-white-text aesthetic, because most PowerPoint presentations suck, and I wanted to keep it as simple as I could. Plus, I was using Libre Office, so any fancy stuff I did was unlikely to turn out right after being converted to .ppt format. The slides were more of a reminder for Brad and I than fancy visuals for the audience. Our talk was a series of short stories, and each slide was a key phrase that reminded us of that story.

I sat through several lightning talks as I got my own presentation in order. I felt bad for working during someone else’s talk, but I knew I’d feel worse if my own talk failed due to lack of preparation. Just moments after finishing the slide show, a fortunate turn of events landed my way: the talk going on in Cinema 5, the room where Brad and I would be presenting, ended 10 minutes early. That meant we had time to copy files over to the presentation computer and do a tech demo, set the levels, get the sound working, and make sure there would be no hiccups along the way. I took care of all that stuff without any problems.

Finally, I could relax and just enjoy the presentations. I bounced from room to room, catching whatever seemed interesting. I hadn’t really slept the night before, so my exhaustion made it difficult to get as much out of the talks as I should have, but I still enjoyed much of what I saw.

Then, it was time for my talk.

Continue reading My SoOnCon ReCap

Our Lightning Talk from Maker Faire Toronto

Back in October of 2011, Brad Blucher and I were invited to give a lightning talk at Site 3 at some point in the future. After numerous delays, the talk was scheduled to occur during Toronto’s first ever Maker Faire.

On my way to the stage, I handed my camera to a friend and asked him to film our talk so I could post it to YouTube. Here is that talk:

Continue reading Our Lightning Talk from Maker Faire Toronto

Illuminated Landscapes: Sodium Series

While the Abstract collection was almost entirely my photography, The sodium series is almost entirely Brad’s. (except for this one photo below, which is my only entry into this set)

Kyle Clements: Illuminated Landscape #74

We call it the sodium series because of the deep orange glow in the sky. Although we were shooting these in the wilderness, we were only an hour away from several cities, and the warm glow from those distant sodium streetlights bounced off the clouds and filled the sky with an unexpected orange light.

Continue reading Illuminated Landscapes: Sodium Series

A Whole Lotta Blog Love

Half of being an artist is what takes place outside the studio. No one is going to randomly knock on my apartment door, just to see if an interesting artist happens to be living there. Marketing and promotion matter!

The most labour-intensive project I have been involved with to date is my collaborative project with Brad Blucher, Take a Picture

A few days ago, I was talking to my friend Jonathan (a maker of fantastic things) and he suggested that I try submitting Take a Picture to the Make Blog and Hack a Day.

Long story short, this was wonderful advice, and it started a snowball rolling, and I can’t wait to see where it goes.

Continue reading A Whole Lotta Blog Love