Archive for March 7th, 2012

I discovered this technique quite by accident; I had made the highlights too bright on an image I was working on, and decided to tone them down by painting a thin glaze over them. And I loved the effect; there was a translucence, and the brighter colors glowed up from under the glaze. Years later I discovered, watching a video by Vladimir Andreyev of the Prosopon School of Iconology, that this was an essential  part step in his technique; he called it “veiling”, and he gave it a symbolic meaning (all schools imbue each step with symbolism, but Andreyev does so with an almost gnostic detail). This led me to suspect that “meaning follows method”, that the symbolism interprets what was in fact something practical.

Following this, I begin building up the brighter flesh tones on the dark base color, the sankir. This can vary widely in hue, from a greenish to reddish to chocolate brown. The technique I use involves thousands of small cross-hatching lines of a brighter color, slowly giving form to the face…

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Besides Rmoney,the other candidates are Sanctorum, King Grinch, and whats-his-name, the old guy...

You know, for being in the center of the political universe, as NPR put it yesterday, Ohio seems pretty unconcerned. It really did not seem like a big deal at all: I saw only one campaign sign (“Newt 2012”), and only about 20% of the electorate showed up for this much-hyped election, about half of those who participated in the 2008 primary. I saw only two pieces of mail promoting a candidate (Santorum), though I am told if you watched TV that Romney’s ads were all over the place, mostly attacking Santorum (Romney spent over 12 million her, about 12 times what Santorum spent; a lot of money for a slim lead). And when I ventured into the fever swamps of talk radio, as I do sometimes when I am driving, Romney’s anti-Santorum ads predominated. Most of these were funded by the Super PAC that does his dirty work for him (lampooned hilariously by Steve Corbert). 

Mr Santorum spent election eve, appropriately, in Steubenville, home not only of one of the nation’s most insular conservative Catholic enclaves, but of a lot of white working class folks, the sort of people Santorum is trying to appeal to, based pretty much on image (“my grandfather was a miner”) rather than substance (he’s another corporate shill, albeit with a folksy image). Listening to conservative Catholic talk show host Al Kresta, his callers were overwhelmingly for Santorum; no surprise there, as Santorum reflects the Catholic right with all its selective orthodoxy and its nationalism. 

For the rest of us, there is little reason for hope. We are almost certainly in for another four years of Obama. The only thing worse than this might be whichever hairball the GOP ends up coughing up and calling a candidate. 

The only good thing about all this is that no one who strives for moral consistency, who sees that this nation is in decline and fall mode, is likely to confuse any earthly kingdom with the reign of Christ. The bad thing is that right wing Catholics are likely to see Santorum as the Anointed, and that so many non-Catholics also see him as the hyper-Catholic.

It is probably too much to hope that the American bishops will clarify this misunderstanding. 

Lord have mercy on our poor nation. I know, in many ways we deserve exactly what we are going to get, but personally I always feel sorry for the suffering, even when  they bring it on themselves.

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Glenn Greenwald is a Democrat for whom principle trumps party:

“As always, the most important point to note for this entire debate is how perverse and warped it is that we’re even having this “debate” at all. It should be self-negating — self-marginalizing — to assert that the President, acting with no checks or transparency, can order American citizens executed far from any battlefield and without any opportunity even to know about, let alone rebut, the accusations. That this policy is being implemented and defended by the very same political party that spent the last decade so vocally and opportunistically objecting to far less extreme powers makes it all the more repellent. That fact also makes it all the more dangerous, because — as one can see — the fact that it is a Democratic President doing it, and Democratic Party officials justifying it, means that it’s much easier to normalize: very few of the Party’s followers, especially in an election year, are willing to make much of a fuss about it at all.”

Read the rest here

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