Check out my interview on THEMUSEUM Blog with Cassandra from Rainbow Reels Queer Film Festival.
Friday, February 25, 2011
Thursday, February 24, 2011
We live in an age where the English language has been completely mutilated by 140 characters, where abbrev's (see what I did there?) have taken precedence over proper grammar and spelling. I'm OK with this since I'm not a language purist and believe that language is a living thing that constantly changes and evolves based on it's surroundings and usage. And with the advent of the Internet, the change in the English language has been exponential - lots of new terms and words are created seemingly everyday. In fact, you might say that a new subset of the English language has been created that's completely dedicated to the online world where words like "pwned" "fail" "brb" and "lol" are common place. It's that last term, "lol" that I've come to discuss today.
Now, I've never been a huge fan of LOL, lol, llloollll, lolz or any of it's other incarnations. For those not in the know, it means laughing out loud (although I don't know how you found this obscure blog if you don't know what LOL is). It's job is to convey the idea of one laughing when communicating online, but I don't think it does it's job particularly well. Laughter is not a straightforward thing. There are many types of laughter and varying degrees of laughter. LOL is just not flexible enough to properly capture how much or little I'm laughing and thus it loses all meaning. Especially when certain people (and you know who they are) use LOL in response to any comment (funny or not) and also proceed to place it at the end of every sentence they type. It's like some strange form of insecurity.
I think we've hit a LOL Saturation Point (or as I like to say LSP, mostly because I'm a firm believer that the Internet doesn't have enough acronyms). And I'd like to offer up a number of alternatives for you to add to your online arsenal.
I'm a big fan of using variations of "ha" to express my laughter. It has all of the versatility that I'm looking for. If I like something and it makes me smirk a simple "haha" will do. In fact, I can really change how intense my laughter is by just extending the number of "ha's" I string together. A smirk will only get a "haha" but a video of someone falling or getting kicked in the nads (btw, I haven't heard the word "nads" since at least grade 6) will get a "hahahahhahahah". Notice that I accidentally had an extra "h" in there. That was truly an accident but it helps to sell the sincerity of the laugh. If I'm reacting very strongly, I can add in capitalization - "HAHAHAHAHAHAHA". Man that was funny! If something is a surprising guffaw, try "HA!". If you want more of a nervous laugh, try "hehe". Although technically not a "ha", "hehe" is definitely in the same family. There are other variations too that I don't necessarily use but are also acceptable. "Bahahahaha!" is an example.
This is not to say that I don't use "LOL" but I prefer to use it specifically for occasions where I truly am laughing out loud. And I use it seldom enough that it maintains its relevancy and meaning.
Anyway, this is my lesson for the day. These are the things I think about. It's true. Ask my wife and anticipate the eye roll followed by a smirk. You might even get a "haha" out of her.
Friday, February 4, 2011
As you may know, one of my passions and definitely my favourite creative outlet is photography. I've always toyed with the idea of getting a bit more serious about photography and attempting to do it for dolla-dolla-bills-yo but have always hesitated to really jump in feet first. There are a number of reasons for this: my skills aren't quite where I want them to be yet. I don't have the backup equipment to render my services accident proof. I'm a bit scared of negative criticism. But I also worry about taking the fun out of it.
What's really great is that with my new-ish job I get to do a lot of the in house photography. I do events, I do stock photos, pictures of the exhibitions...most of the website is made up of images that I shot. But last night with the opening of Searching for Tom I felt a lack of inspiration. I still got the images I needed and some shots I really liked. But it was the first time that photography felt like a job. It kinda scared me.
Time for my usual counterargument: It was a pretty crazy week of work and yesterday was particularly stressful with me not even getting an instant to think about photographing that night until the moment I pulled out my camera to check my cards were dumped right as people started to congregate for the event. I usually like to give myself an hour before a shoot begins to mentally prepare. Get in the photography frame of mind. Yesterday did not lend itself to that luxury. I was tired. Everyone was tired, stressed. It was a workman like event...not my usual way of shooting. Also, I've now shot in the atrium at work so many times, it's sometimes hard to get creative when you become very familiar with the space. So, it probably was a bit of an aberration. That's what I've concluded.
But as I look through my images from the past few months, I can't help but notice that most of them are related somehow to work. Which in some ways is great as I get to do something I love as part of my every day job. But it also saddens me to see that I'm not shooting as much just for me. There's been a "forced" quality to my stuff for the past few months. You can tell by my lack of posting on Flickr.
So as the title says, I'm looking for a little inspiration. A new certain something to get me back shooting for pleasure again. New places and spaces usually inspire me, so maybe I just need to explore a bit. What I really need is a proper vacation, but that's a whole other post.
Anyway, let me know if you have any ideas!