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Photo’d HisHerstory : Potted History Pt1…

17/06/2018

I wrote ‘potted histories’ of my days in pocket size diaries between the ages of 14 and 32.  Some reflections on that form of journalling have been mentioned in this OTTP blog within posts of the Retro Diary Enquiry category – where I look back on those herstory days of yore and link them to the current days/ways of my trans(itioned) non-binary / genderqueer hisherstory of the new Millenium ‘Teenies’ years…

It wasn’t until 2010 that I acquired a Nokia camera phone.  Then began my photo-journalling journey.  That date was still 4 years prior to my diagnosis with Asperger’s Syndrome – when my newly-obsessive snap-happy life was made clearer: taking photographs was a way to encapsulate the intensity of my visual sensory input experience; plus, being busy taking photographs gave me a way to be self-contained within stress-inducing social situations.

The discovery of further encapsulating the intensity of the lone-wanderer photographic experience into a mosaic-style grid ‘collage’ of 12 images began with the Nokia in my day-to-day life in Devon back in 2010, and continued with my life-changing move to Brighton to explore being proactively political and creativist in a trans-aware/trans-embracing (and neurodivergent-supportive) city.

The now-Instagram-tagged #fotomosaic_grids (f/m_g’s) have appeared in cube style of 9 shots taken on a Samsung Galaxy A3 smartphone over the past 39 days (from May 2018).  The journey of image encapsulation in x12, 15, 21, 8, & 9 combination fotomosaics_grids from my Nokia-to-Samsung phones useage, will be covered – or revealed in gallery displays, as below – in the next few Parts of this potted history / photo’d hisherstory…

Click on individual _grids to see them as solo #photoabstract  &/or  #accidentalart images

 

 

 

 

 

 

More manhole covers, cafe, shopfronts and macro images, etc can be seen via the Photo Books category of this OTTP / off the trolley productions blog…

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Le Monde of Film Noir…

28/04/2018

20170128_100106Back in 2004, on a part time arts course – including film studies – the subject was film noir. Relatively new to me at the time I threw myself into reading Dashiell Hammett and watching a handful of films – The Big Sleep, Maltese Falcon, Gilda, etc – to jen up on the world of the ‘hard-boiled’ private detective and the femme fatale.

 

As seen, I even tried drawing a few of them from the movie stills…

 

20170128_100127Putting in fewer class hours on other subjects than my peers, I offered to do extra in film studies, and so when it came to actually creating five minutes worth of film noir, I found myself becoming overnight screenplay writer, director, wardrobe mixtress, props producer, editor – and probaby gaffer and key grip into the bargain.

 

(The cinematographer drew up the storyboard after the edit…)

 

DiamondsR4Ever0418‘Bite of the Apple’ had it all: diamante gems sat on velvet jerkily rotating on a ceramics studio potters wheel; San Francisco fog rolling in from Alcatraz via the smoke machine in the drama workshop; gunshots from a real lead pistol misfiring in iMovie audio mode; old style digital phone tone ringing out on a mobile – and lashings of lipstick on the dame shot close-up in a compact mirror…

 

 

LeadGunShot0418The whole memory of those heady Hollywoodesque two weeks inspired my first attempt at creating a villanelle style poem in February this year; as can be seen Aspie wordplay in my brain was doing its thang – as usual – to inspire the poem’s content…

 

 

Le Monde of Film Noir

Just to divert the world-wise private dicks,
Each villain: elle, hourglass waist and bottle blonde –
The femme fatale – dons high heels, gets her kicks.

On celluloid reels: uptown, in the sticks,
The chiaroscuro (from across the pond)
Serves to divert the world-wise private dicks;

Shadows disguise the dame’s wiles and antics
That ensnare her ‘lame’ prey – of whom she’s fond;
The femme fatale dons high heels, gets her kicks.

To outsmart the ‘hard-boiled’ PIs’ own tricks,
She envelopes them in her perfumed monde
And so diverts the world-wise private dicks.

Trench coats and suits fall for rich red lipsticks:
The dick, the prey and femme dance tous en ronde;
The femme fatale dons high heels, gets her kicks

‘Til her fate is sealed in those film noir flicks –
Her silver tongue proved not to be her bond.
Still, to divert the world-wise private dicks,
The femme fatale dons high heels, gets her kicks.

 

© Luc(e) Raesmith

 

JoanCrawfordFF

 

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Shopfronts, Scaffolding & Cafes…

15/04/2018
It was 4 years ago – in 2014 – that I was able to create a-blog-post-a-day during April for NaPoWriMo – the National Poetry Writing Month;
I posted 30 days’ worth of 17 syllable haikus (with accompanying photographs) in OTTP Haiku City.
In the 28 months when I didn’t manage to publish any posts on this OTTP blog: Person is Not a Rude Word, I did (happily) manage to get my painful hands to assemble 2 photo books – one each July – in time to give as a gift to my mother for her August birthday.
These photo books can be viewed online from the links below.
I’m plotting to lazily borrow 3 seventeen-syllable mini proems from ‘Haiku City’ to introduce them…
Or, I could proverbially preamble that Spring has finally sprung, folk are sitting out in cafes, building owners have more scaffolding put in place, tourists are arriving and window shopping...

Nah!  I’ll stick with the haikus.

CafeScaffoldingHove

cafe, shop & poles – Hove

So to introduce  the macro and the micro of out-and-about luxury snacking, plus poles, planks and clamps

‘The Cafe Thing & Scaffolding’ photo book 
here are

Haiku No. 6

spiced, glazed, hot cross buns
blur distinctions ‘twixt bakers
and sacred prasad

and

Haiku No. 24

scaffolding festish:
heavy metal therapy
for Aspie persons

 

And to introduce the pictorial tribute to my self-confessed secondhand / cut-price shopaholism

‘shops R us’ photo book

here is

Haiku No. 12

purchasing power:
sifting through charity shops’
bargains for the soul

HalloweenShopfront

Halloween shopfront, Brighton

 

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Surprise visit to Sotheby’s…

02/04/2018

On a sunny day back in January I was heading to the exhibition of creations from Outside In artists being displayed on the ground floor of Sotheby’s auction house in London.  This exhibition was a celebration of Outside In achieving stand-alone charity status in its work to provide opportunities for artists facing barriers to the art world.

SSOIArt@Sothebys0118

After enjoying a breakfast for visiting artists, we were able to sit in on the auction being held that day: sales of artefacts with royal or noble heritage – including one of several copies of the Crown Jewels that were manufactured for display in the Britain and the Commonwealth at the time of ERII’s coronation in 1953.

 

The events inspired me to produce a couple of pieces of creative writing – in an Aspie voice: namely alphabetic/acrostic/shape style proems.

 

A-Z for Mayfair, W1 or Alphabet, do my Bidding ( Sale L18306 – 17.01.18 )

Anticipating croissants and sussing New Bond St –
Bonhams noted – when Sotheby’s windows with
Crescents of high carat diamonds spotted.
Doorman: liveried, Dutch accent, promises coffee,
Escorts one to a wood-panelled Gallery: closed – for
Function: private – with mismatch artisans (c. 2012-17)
Gathered, gossiping about sugar crystals on
Heirloom silver plate trays and
Indecently mini pastries for ‘pre-auction breakfast’…
Jarring with Cecil Beaton’s
Kind portraiture of Picasso, Cocteau and
Lily-white frocked debs and celebs of his day, plus
Mary Fedden’s still lives in the restaurant,
New art – eclectic and deviating from the norm:
Outsider artists’ creations in the exhibition space
Present a disarming and psychedelic array of
Quasi sculpture and paintings in cardboard, threads, felt tip, skip metals…
Royal and noble descent artefacts,
Surveyed and set to be put under the gavel –
Ten thirty on the dot GMT – in the
Upstairs Gallery: open and oozing valued antiquity;
Vestibule display – Lot 74 – pastiche Coronation Regalia:
Weaponry and Crowns in gilt metal on plaster,
Xpressly mounted on velvet and faux ermine fur;
Yellowing ‘imperial’ and ‘state’ labels on wood boxes with rope handles (c.1953);
Zircons for the citizens who can’t spot the difference…

 

 

 

The Crown Acrostic:
at Southeby’s told ‘Of Royal and Noble Descent’
17.1.18
 
@
Sou-
theby’s told:
“Ordinary infantry? Nay!
‘Flasheart’ Captain Blood? oh yay! He,
roistering, randy playmate of the Monarch,
ogled those gaudy gem-encrusted Regalia in that
year 16-o-what? and fancied himself dastardly brigand
and Captain of Fortune who could outsmart those honoured,
liveried, red beef-eating and raven-minding Militia of the Tower
and steal away the State’s Crown Jewels: for mere ‘Blood sport’ and
notorietous cognition, one guesses; for surely the sacred pure pearls,
diamonds, deep sapphires, emeralds, rich rubies & such, bejewelled
national treasures: bright Crowns all, Sceptres, Spurs, Swords, &
Orb, Mace & most-favoured royal oil Anointing Spoon, would
be impossible to pass on to the ‘fences’ of them there times,
lest they spill the Jacobean beans, and Blood’s final cry be
emitted in prayer upon the citizens-viewed scaffold;
drawn & quartered his body dragged through
England’s capital; his head on a spike for vile
scavenger birds to pluck out his greed-filled eyes…
Consider this: his everwhile pal King James I – or II? –
endowed his Captain with forgiveness and bonhomie;
no hideous end, but continuity of the said Blood line
through the centuries to my own – mere wordsmith”

[ all of this is baloney/blarney in terms of historical reference: Colonel Thomas Blood stole some of the Crown Jewels in 1671 during the reign of Charles II; he was pardoned: perhaps for his sheer bravado – or because Charles II himself needed to top up his royal coffers…  The bloodline reference is true, but the family story was relayed as that of a Captain,friend of King James – with no word of his Roundhead & Cromwell allegiances… My own name was taken to match that of my ancestors, the Anglo-Irish Nuttall-Smiths ]

© Luc(e) Raesmith

 

SSCrownJewels@Sthbys0118
 

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Grow : Wellbeing in Nature…

21/11/2017

SSGrow7BestofSG&SP0917

For eight weeks – from August to October – I had the incredible privilege of participating on a course of consecutive Thursdays spent in beautiful South Downs countryside.  It was the twentieth ‘season’ of the Grow Project’s wellbeing in Nature courses, known affectionately by all as Grow20.  This highly-effective immersion in ‘the green’ was hugely beneficial for my mental health; as a person with Asperger Syndrome, being out in the expansive space made relating with others much easier.

These courses have been funded and supported by several partner organisations: the National Trust, University of Brighton,  South Downs National Park Authority, the City’s Council – and Big Lottery Fund.  They are based at National Trust-owned Saddlescombe Farm and facilitated by Grow’s paid and volunteer workers, by NT rangers and the tenant sheep farmers, Camilla & Roly: on the farm, in the garden and orchard; out and about on the Downs; in community gardens in Brighton & Hove, including at Stanmer Park Organics – and also most-ably facilitated by all in the sharing of ‘potluck’ food together!

I hope that the fotomosaic images in the slideshow below, and the writings – that formed a part of my eight weeks’ journalling – will give a flavour of this special ‘season’ and the en-joy-ment that it brought to all…

Henrietta begat Coriander:
Pet Lambs Acrostic
 
SddlscmbSheepinPen0917Hay bales
Egg-laying
Nettles sting
Russet/carrot salad
Intention cards
Ewe’s udder
Testing teats…
Tractors: great & small
“Away!” sheepdog call

Barn owl pellet
English mutton/lamb
Garden picnic
Apples-to-go
Trolley stops-in-van

Cocoa ‘n’ date treat
Orange nasturtiums
Roly’s & Freddie’s farm
Intelligent creatures
Ant on to-do card
New ‘clan’ buddies
Dew pond photo
Edible flowers
Roof chorus grouse
[No! they were guinea fowl…]

(and, if I remember rightly, Henrietta was grandmother sheep to lamb, Coriander)

After an afternoon of ‘hurricane season’ cloud-watching on the Downs, I spent a week writing a haiku per day – based on that afternoon and the weather outside my east Brighton windows…

Weather Consciousness Haikus
 

DungmobileCrpd2Prnt

not-so-Andy-Goldsworthy wild art ‘Dungmobile’ – it moves with the wind!

Cloudscape bonanza:
Sun hat off and rain hood up;
Beech trees umbrella.

Blue-shirted school boys’
Astro-turf footie tempered
By the cloudless sky…

Breeze whips cumulous
Away and lends the laundry
Wrinkles with sun scents

Dull platinum sky
Spits and ripples the rust-like
Algae’d stone bird bath

Grey, mild, but drizzling:
Weather brings down my spirit
Along with the leaves.

Autumn in the air:
Bring out the long socks, long sleeves;
Relish wardrobe shift!

Oh, cheer! Sun seeps through:
Blanket grey’s blue-broken;
Bird bath water’s warmed.

(more haikus – one per day over a month for NaPoWriMo 2014 – can be seen on my ‘sibling’ blog site: OTTP Haiku City)

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Sadly, due to funding cuts, Grow21 season, due this winter, had to be cancelled.  I will now be volunteering assistance to fundraise for this very worthwhile project;  the Grow Project invites donations from any source – and it’s possible to watch their beautifully hand-painted, research evaluation animation – “nature-based intervention for mental health” – to understand the benefits of such courses and group days spent in the ‘great outdoors’.  To donate, visit Grow’s Facebook page

Devil'sDykeMagicCollage0917

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On The Trolley Swapovers x2…

15/10/2017

BlueTrolleyBrollyFSCafLooIn my absence from blogging over the past two plus years, my household/wardrobe has seen two changes of the invaluable trolley: my companions of 35+ years!  Last witnessed on OTTP: PINARW was the skyblue(ish) Hoppa – as seen here outside the now-closed public convenience which has given way entirely to the Frank-in-Steine Cafe in Brighton’s Old Steine Gardens…

 

Next to arrive on the scene was the outlandishly brightly-hued Red & WhiteCircleSpotted model – a mere Hoppa lookalikey that was riddled with built-in obsolescence: it’s bag had to be remounted on the skyblue(ish) Hoppa’s frame&wheels with extra bunjies support, whilst its top flap became discoloured with unseemly black streaks when I attempted to reinforce its flimsy textile underside with felt and a well-known latex glue…

 

SSRedTrolleyShrhmSeaFlora0719However, the Red trolley has served me well and enjoyed varied adventures and daytrip ‘jollies’.  Here seen in sunny July amongst the pebble beach flora and vegetables of Shoreham-by-the-Sea – following a perambulate alongside the houseboats moored on the mudflats of said West Sussex-bordering harbour town.

Come September (with sturdy brolley-walkingstick-alternative onboard) it positively shone, yet again, under the hurricane season skies of Eastbourne – following a lightening dash to the Towner Gallery of said East Sussex resort and centre of the arts.

 

(The same Red wheeled companion will feature in a future post regarding invisible disability creativity…)

RedTrolleyBrolleyE:bourne0917

 

Sadly, Hoppa have met so much competition in the now-fashionable world of the humble trolley, that it is reduced to only producing an all-black model in the compact (back-of-the-bus travel friendly) size…  This was too sombre for my taste, having relished the classic Tartan patterned models of yesteryear.

 

I had to search long and hard to find the Red model’s replacement… It remains to be seen how long it will be until the latest Herringbone Brown patterned not-Hoppa-but-copy model will remain on its own two wheels…

 

On a positive and factual note, the current Herringbone Brown has already stood proud against the dynamic and lawful brickwork of the Old Courthouse in Brighton, but then witnessed lawlessness (a vandalised bus shelter on the University of Sussex campus: shock horreur!)

 

H'boneTrolleyCrtHse1017

 

H'bneTrolleyBusStopBreakage1017So subtle – yet stunning – is the combination of my herringbone weave Autumn coat and my herringbone features trolley that I was simply unable (in spite of 3 attempts) to upload the image of the two together onto this blog post…

And so, onward and upward with the Off the Trolley Productions – and with those in the trolley: cushion(s)/emergency rations/spare bunjy (cf vaccuum cleaner adventure of earlier blog post circa 2013)/etc…

 

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The 28months Catch Up Post…

19/09/2017

Hooray for Steroids!  No wonder the sports officials have to test the athletes of the World…

In April & May of 2015 I moved home.  I developed tennis elbow from packing multiple smallish boxes that I could manage to lift myself…  I already suffered with referred nerve pain in my hands.  With fibromyalgia I was exhausted and in pain for months; blogging seemed out of the question.  The absence from creative online activity continued until 28 months had elapsed since my last post…

But hope arrived – finally – a few weeks ago: in the form of a steroid injection to my carpal tunnel syndrome’d right wrist – making extra computer mousework† more possible and less painfully agitating.  Hooray again!  († see Glossary category” Part 2)

So here is a selection of fotomosaics in a slideshow to illustrate the journal of my life over the past two and a quarter years… they’ll show home making, beach combing, dog walking, banner wielding, herb&bulb gardening, decorations hangings, out&about adventuring – and much mobile phone photographing.

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