Pisaries Creator Update

There comes a point in time when you find yourself spread in too many directions.  I have now reached this point.  Since I began this blog over a year ago, it was a way to express my creativity and put all my interests into one spot.  I found myself thinking and spending too much of my time on my blog instead of putting focus on my rewrite and writing in general of my novel ideas these past couple of months.  I’ve passed by many writing deadlines, and each time I find myself not happy with myself.  For this reason, I am stepping away from my blog for the month of May to focus on solely on my writing.  When I come back in June or even maybe July (after I make my move), I’m going to make some changes regarding content on my blog so I don’t feel so pressured to update all my interests as much as possible.  Let’s just say I’m narrowing down the playing field. I thank those who have followed me, and while I’m going away for a bit, I hope you return soon because I eventually will. Wishing everyone the best of luck this upcoming month.

Pisaries Creator

Artist of the Month: Paul Gauguin

Paul Gauguin

Born: June 7, 1848 in Paris, France

Died: May 8, 1903 in Atuona, Marquesas Islands, French Polynesia

“No one is good; no one is evil; everyone is both, in the same way and in different ways. It is so small a thing, the life of a man, and yet there is time to do great things, fragments of the common task.”

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Paul Gauguin, 1891
Oviri figure on Gauguin's grave in Atuona.
Oviri figure on Gauguin’s grave in Atuona

Paul Gauguin is best known as a French painter and wasn’t appreciated until after his death. In fact, he was talented in many art forms: painter, sculptor, print maker, ceramist, wood-carver, drawer, and was also a writer. Born to liberal parents in Paris, his childhood was fairly normal, but illegitimacy ran on his mother’s side. His father died when he was an infant and shortly lived in Peru with his mother and sister before being forced to return to Paris. It is here Gauguin grew into a young adult, joining the French army and later becoming a successful stockbroker and businessman. He tried his hand at selling tarps, but this was not successful. His lack of providing for his family ultimately helped end his marriage. It was when the stock market crashed in 1882 that he took painting seriously, and never let up until he was physically unable to do it.

The Artist's Mother, 1889
The Artist’s Mother, 1889
Gauguin's maternal grandmother, Flora Tristan (1803–1844) in 1838
Gauguin’s maternal grandmother, Flora Tristan, 1838
Women Bathing, 1885
Winter Landscape, 1879
Winter Landscape, 1879
Still-Life with Fruit and Lemons (c. 1880)
Still-Life with Fruit and Lemons, 1880
Still Life with Profile of Laval, 1886,
Still Life with Profile of Laval, 1886
Bord de Mer II, 1887
Bord de Mer II, 1887
Martinique Landscape 1887
Martinque Landscape, 1887
Four Breton Women, 1886
Four Breton Women, 1886
Among the Mangoes (La Cueillette des Fruits), 1887,
Among the Mangoes (La Cueillette des Fruits), 1887

Gauguin is probably second most remembered for his stay in Tahiti and how it influenced him and vice versa. Part of the reason for him traveling there was to get away from European civilization and spent considerable time in Papeete. He again was broke with health issues, and returned to France. It was during this time he had a falling out with Paul Durand-Ruel and Ambroise Vollard, both art dealers. Gauguin was miserly with his money and selfish in his actions and never saw Europe or his children again when he left for Tahiti in 1895. He survived from art sales and support from friends, later becoming a newspaper editor until 1901. This didn’t mean some of his artwork wasn’t sold in Paris. Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going? sold for 2,500 francs (about $10,000 in year 2000 US dollars) in 1901. With a steady flow of income, he was able to make Marquesas Island his home.

Vahine no te tiare (Woman with a Flower), 1891
Vahine no te tiare (Woman with a Flower), 1891
The Midday Nap (1894)
The Midday Nap, 1894
Te aa no areois (The Seed of the Areoi), 1892
Te aa no areois (The Seed of the Areoi), 1892
Nave nave moe (Sacred spring, sweet dreams), 1894
Nave nave moe (Sacred spring, sweet dreams), 1894
maternity 1899
Maternity, 1899
Christ in the Garden of Olives (Gauguin's self-portrait) 1889,
Christ in the Garden of Olives (Gauguin’s self-portrait), 1889
Annah the Javanese, (1893),
Annah the Javanese, 1893
Arii Matamoe (The Royal End) (1892)
Arii Matamoe (The Royal End), 1892
Nave nave moe (Sacred spring, sweet dreams), 1894
Nave nave moe (Sacred spring, sweet dreams), 1894
maternity 1899
Maternity, 1899

Other painters during that time, Camille Pissarro and Paul Cézanne, initially helped him further his artistic vision. He moved to Copenhagen with his family, but it wasn’t what he had hoped. He returned to Paris in 1885, took low-end jobs, and held contempt for Georges Seurat (known for pointillism) and unfriended Pissarro. He found new energy at Pont-Aven, an artist’s colony, in Brittany, France in 1886. He found new friendships in Émile Bernard, Charles Laval, and Émile Schuffenecker. It was here he became disinterested in Impressionism and found vigor in folk art and Japanese print work. He experimented in other painting styles during this time. His visit to Panama in 1887 was the introduction to non-European women in his paintings and affinity for them in relationships. He continued having strained relationships with artists and this time it was the brothers, Vincent and Theo van Gogh. Claude Monet and Pierre-Auguste Renoir had no problem expressing their distaste for his work. On the opposite side, he found a lifelong friend in Edgar Degas.

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Gauguin playing a harmonium at Alphonse Mucha’s studio at rue de la Grande-Chaumière, Paris, 1895
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Maruru (Offerings of Gratitude), 1894
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Paul Gauguin, Alfons Mucha, Luděk Marold, and Annah the Javanese at Mucha’s studio, 1893
The Universe is Created (L'Univers est créé), from the Noa Noa suite, 1893–94
The Universe is Created (L’Univers est créé), from the Noa Noa suite, 1893–94

Gauguin is probably second most remembered for his stay in Tahiti and how it influenced him and vice versa. Part of the reason for him traveling there was to get away from European civilization and spent considerable time in Papeete. He again was broke with health issues, and returned to France. It was during this time he had a falling out with Paul Durand-Ruel and Ambroise Vollard, both art dealers. Gauguin was miserly with his money and selfish in his actions and never saw Europe or his children again when he left for Tahiti in 1895. He survived from art sales and support from friends, later becoming a newspaper editor until 1901. This didn’t mean some of his artwork wasn’t sold in Paris. Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going? sold for 2,500 francs (about $10,000 in year 2000 US dollars) in 1901. With a steady flow of income, he was able to make Marquesas Island his home.

Where Do We Come From What Are We Where Are We Going, 1897
Where Do We Come From What Are We Where Are We Going, 1897
Le Sorcier d'Hiva Oa (Marquesan Man in a Red Cape), 1902,
Le Sorcier d’Hiva Oa (Marquesan Man in a Red Cape), 1902
Two Women (1901 or 1902)
Two Women (1901 or 1902)
Still life with Exotic Birds, 1902,
Still life with Exotic Birds, 1902
Riders on the Beach, 1902
Riders on the Beach, 1902
Landscape with a Pig and a Horse (Hiva Oa), 1903
Landscape with a Pig and a Horse (Hiva Oa), 1903

He had a love and hate relationship the church. He sided with them in some respects, but felt the institution was hypocritical when it came to sexual matters. He had no shortage of being revengeful, and fought against what he felt were injustices done to him whether it come from his family, institutions, or military. His health had deteriorated, mainly his legs and heart, and wasn’t able to paint. He engaged in writing and wrote his autobiography, although choppy, and letters to his friends. It was a review of his life. He died on May 8, 1903. All but three of his children outlived him. He had five children with Mette: Émile, Aline, Clovis, Jean René, and Paul Rollon. He had three children from two different women: Germaine Huais, Émile Marae a Tai, and a daughter that died in infancy. He had one daughter with a fourteen year old girl, Vaeoho, who left him shortly before giving birth.

Jules Agostini's 1896 photograph of Gauguin's house in Punaauia.
Jules Agostini’s photograph of Gauguin’s house in Punaauia, 1896
Père Paillard (Father Lechery), 1902
Père Paillard (Father Lechery), 1902
Paul Gauguin, 1894, Oviri (Sauvage), partially glazed stoneware
Paul Gauguin, 1894, Oviri (Sauvage), partially glazed stoneware
Paul Gauguin, 1893–95, Objet décoratif carré avec dieux tahitiens, terre cuite, rehauts peints
Paul Gauguin, 1893–95, Objet décoratif carré avec dieux tahitiens, terre cuite, rehauts peints

There is no doubt that Gauguin left a mark in many places, some good and some bad. HE was an artist, father, and husband who struggled throughout much of his life. I would say he was his own worst critic and enemy. He loved women and wasn’t afraid of it. His works sell in the millions and Nafea Faa Ipoipo (When Will You Marry?) sold for 210 million in 2014.

Nafea Faa Ipoipo (When Will You Marry), 1892,
Nafea Faa Ipoipo (When Will You Marry), 1892

“Don’t copy nature too literally. Art is an abstraction. Derive it from nature as you dream in nature’s presence, and think more about the act of creation than the outcome.”

Pictures/Information by Wikipedia

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Random Information for May (Just Around the Corner)

random may info

On May 2, 1928 General Motors Corp. purchased Chevrolet Motor Co.

Lightning strikes about 100 times each second, with about 1,800 thunderstorms in progress over Earth’s surface at any given time.

The nicknames of baseball players are the following: Mitch Williams was Wild Thing, Mark Fidrych was The Bird, Lou Gehrig was The Iron Horse and Biscuit Pants, John Franklin Baker was Home Run, and George Herman Ruth was Babe, the Bambino, and the Sultan of Swat.

An eighteen year old Elvis Presley paid a private recording studio 4 dollars in 1953 to record “My Happiness” and “That When Your Heartaches Begin” on a two –sided record as a gift to his mother.

On May 16, 1080, rookie point guard Earvin “Magic” Johnson filled in for injured center Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and scores 42 points in the Los Angeles Lakers’ NBA Championship win.

In 2008, Danica Patrick won the Indy Japan 300, become the first female drive to win and IndyCar race.

Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay became the first climbers known to have reached the summit of Mount Everest in May 1953.

Mark Twain was not a fan of fellow novelist Jane Austen, at one point writing in a letter, “Every time I read Pride and Prejudice I want to dig her up and hit her over the skull with her own shin-bone.”

In 1965, at age 59, Satchel Paige pitched in his last Major League Baseball game for the Kansas City Athletics. In his honor, owner Charles O. Finley furnished the bullpen with a rocking chair.

In 1991, Willy T. Ribbs became the first African-American driver to qualify for the Indianapolis 500.

The Eiffel Tower leans as much as seven inches in really hot weather because the portion of the structure that’s in the sun expands more than the parts in the shade.

Major League Baseball teams managed by Leo Durocher on this way to a career total of 2,009 wins. The teams were Dodgers, Giants, Cubs, and Astros.

Source Material: Andrew McMeel Publishing

 

Book Recommendation: Water for Elephants

“…if you expect people to try to do things your way, you’re going to have to give some hints as to what that way is.”

waterforelephants

Publisher: Algonquin Books

Publication: April 9, 2007 (1st edition on May 26, 2006)

Page Number: 352

Sara Gruen wrote Water for Elephants which was adapted into a movie in 2011. This was her third novel. It was initially turned down by her original publisher so for all writers out there, keep writing and submitting your work. I remember this book being incredibly easy to read, making it a fast read. It’s a triad love story: between two different people, between entertainers and their animals, and among the various entertainers. It goes back and forth in time between the young and old Jacob Janowski with the primary focus on his life while in the circus. It is here where he connects with many people in the Benzini Brothers circus, most notably August and Marlena. Jacob’s connection and love for animals is obvious as his original career path was veterinarian work. There is brief touching on animal cruelty in circuses although not done in an overly graphic way. I won’t spoil the ending, but this was written to satisfy the reader first and a close second the writer. You can read between the lines. This was a book Gruen had fun writing.

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Movie Recommendation: Free Fire (2016)

Quote from Free Fire by Ord: “The only thing a girl needs to stay warm in Los Angeles is a flexible outlook.”

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Producers: Eugenio Derbez, Ben Odell, Erica Oyama, and Mike Upton

Director: Ben Wheatley

Writers: Amy Jump and Ben Wheatley

Cast: Sam Riley, Brie Larson, Cillian Murphy, Armie Hammer, Babou Ceesay, Enzo Cilenti, Noah Taylor, Patrick Bergin, Michael Smiley, Mark Monero, etc

Rating: R for strong violence, pervasive language, sexual references, and drug use

Running Time: 1 hour and 31 minutes

Free Fire is a movie you will either love or hate. How exciting can two handfuls of people be in a warehouse with guns and different motives? You know people are going to get shot: some will die and some will live. There isn’t tension beyond the obvious and the pacing is steady. While the ending is sort of predictable, there is enough quality acting and interesting dialogue to keep you entertained. The acting from every cast member was good. You get used to the yelling and the rapid gunfire. You want to know who survives and who dies. I’m not going to spoil the ending, but don’t blink too much or you will miss who gets shot and where on the body. This movie was a nice diversion from the rapid fire Marvel and DC movies being spit out from the studios. I watched The Great Wall around the same time, and the fact I’m recommending this and not the former says a lot.

Pisaries Creator rates Free Fire at 85%

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Trifecta #16

IMAGE OF THE WEEK

I’ve heard you have better luck on winning on Fremont/downtown than on the current strip.  So word to the wise, go here to gamble instead of elsewhere in Vegas.

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WORD OF THE WEEK

Two words associated with the mafia back in the day.  It can be either legal or illegal, but in both cases the interest rates are high.

loan shark

VIDEO OF THE WEEK

If you’ve seen Scam City with Conor Woodman, this will sound familiar.  Since I was just in Las Vegas, this short video seemed appropriate.  In this kind of city, there’s many unhelpful people as there are helpful.  I’ve seen a handful of episodes, and while it might seem overly cautious, it’s an eye opener.  There are predators out there.  Hopefully, you don’t end up as prey.  He teaches you some of the scams in Sin City throughout the whole episode.

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Vegas: Part 4 (On The Way Back)

Everything must come to an end, and when we left Vegas it was in the low 90s.  It was unusually hotter than normal.  The terrain started as desert and ended with lush green.  We passed by three sets of solar panels in between Nevada and California.  I liked being back in the cooler LA weather, and until the next time Sin City. 

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twocolorhills

solarpanels

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solarpanel5

mt7

mt4

mt

mts1

cahills7

cahills3

cahills2

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Fremont Street in 1952

casinos1952

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Vegas: Part 3 (Fremont and Main)

I’m winding my way to Fremont and Main where it’s a whole different kind of casino clientele.  The inside of the casinos basically still look alike, but without the pizazz of the newer ones.  We were limited on time and both were tired so we only spent about an hour here.  I’d like to come back and see the Mob Museum.

las vegas city

retrovegas

wedding chapel

old lv

johnnysboxing

showgirls

city of lv

hogs biker bar

Main Street

mainstreet hotel

mainstreetbrewery

Downtown

downtownsun

downtown grand

Fremont Street

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fremont outside

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slotzilla

Four Queens

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Plaza

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Golden Gate

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Golden Nugget

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Binions

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downtown cars

California

california hotel

california hotel parking

The Mob Museum

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Vegas: Part 2 (The Strip)

I’m almost there to New York New York.  There’s a lot of winding around on the streets to get to the parking lot.  Luckily, I wasn’t driving because I would have definitely gotten lost.  We made good time to and from Vegas.  Lots to do and next time want to get in some shows and go into other casinos I’ve never been inside. 

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toshiba

nyfar

lv4

parktheatre

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Vegas Strip of today

flamingo

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lvstrip

aria2

cpti

aria

Caesar’s Palace

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Encore/Wynn

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Paris

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Palazzo

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Treasure Island

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tiship

New York New York

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newyorkbus

newyork

hersheykisses

statueofliberty

pepsicola

Inside New York New York

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nyelevator

New York New York at night

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Siegfried and Roy at Mirage

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Ceiling of Bellagio

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MGM Grand Buffet

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Near MGM

cocacola

This is probably the show I’d see

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Vegas Strip at night today

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redlvstrip

bluelvstrip

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Vegas: Part 1 (On The Road Again)

I went to Sin City this past weekend with my roommate/partner.  We left on Saturday morning and came back Monday night.  There was a lot of changes since the last time I visited in 2008.  The hotel I stayed at only exists in my memory, as it was torn down.  Surprisingly, I didn’t remember much of my prior stay.  This time we stayed at New York New York, but talk about the choices.  You have casinos/hotels on the strip, close to the strip, downtown, and other places within the city limits. We walked four hours up and down the strip this time, and hardly made a dent with going into the casinos.  I basically took pictures of the outside.   The MGM Grand Buffet had more food choices than I was accustomed too.  We went to Fremont and Main Street and saw the older casinos the next day.  The reason most people make the drive through the desert or fly into the city is to drink and gamble, but I managed to do neither as it was more business than fun.  I saw plenty of women dancing on tables, drunk people, and having a little too much fun.  Here are my pictures on the drive to Vegas (need to do something to pass the time) and Vegas itself (need to take pictures so I can remember the trip).

Getting further and further away from Los Angeles

barstow sign

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barstowsign3

shoshone

More impressive in person but miles of white sands

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Joshua trees along the way

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Various landscape along the way

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calandscape

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Big thermometer along the way

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