Archive for October, 2014

  • Picture-esque: A snapshot of state-of-the-fine-art-photography

    Oct 31, 14 • ndemarino • 5enses, Portfolio3,533 CommentsRead More »

    By Robert Blood It started with a question: When does a photograph become art? Following the lead of high school valedictorians through the ages, I consulted the venerable Merriam-Webster, which defines a photograph as “a picture or likeness obtained by photography.” And art? That’s “the conscious use of skill and creative imagination especially in the production of aesthetic objects.” Unfazed, I followed these semi-circular definitions down a rabbit hole of semantic gymnastics and mixed-martial arts metaphors. Soon, I was unable to delineate each constituent, let alone their confluence. Somewhat fazed, I looked to the experts in academic journals. After tearing through a ream of essays on the subject, I reached a profound realization. Namely, that the writing in academic journals is constipated and best left to students working on master’s degrees and six-figure student loans. Decidedly fazed, I just Googled the damned phrase, “When does a photograph become art?” Turns out even the Greatte Oraclé Digitalus isn’t sure, THOUGH LOTS OF PEOPLE WHO POST ON MESSAGE BOARDS IN CAPITAL LETTERS HAVE VERY STRONG OPINIONS ABOUT IT!!1!1 Then I stopped for lunch. After that, I decided to pass the buck to four Prescott-based photographers, each of whom was selected according to the following criteria: I enjoy her or his work. I have her or his phone number handy. Here’s what they think. …   True to form Stephen Smith discovered photography

  • How to create a successful new TV series (in one column)

    Oct 31, 14 • ndemarino • 5enses, Alan Dean Foster's PerceivingsNo CommentsRead More »

    By Alan Dean Foster Even more so than the movies, television has always been infamous as a medium in which lip service is given to originality. Ask the relevant executive or producer in Hollywood what they would like to see in the way of a pilot for a new show and like as not they’ll reply, “We want something original! Something new and unexpected, something edgy! Something nobody’s seen before!” (All these folks end their spoken sentences with exclamation points that appear, hovering like drifting, dark spiderweb, directly above their heads.) This is entertainment industry-speak for, “What we really want is a copy of the current No. 1 hit show — but just different enough so that we can’t be sued!” It started with situation comedies, because they were cheap to make. It became egregious to the point of absurdity when police dramas and lawyer shows hit it big and immediately began slavishly imitating one another. The latter are particularly noted for their essential interchangeability. If you watch enough of them, it gets to the point where you can no longer tell who is prosecuting whom. There are more personal injury lawyers on American television than in all of Japan. As if that’s not bad/sad enough, their presence is supplemented by the interminable advertisements for the real ones. You know the latter. My personal favorites are the ones that attempt

  • News From the Wilds: November 2014

    Oct 31, 14 • ndemarino • 5enses, News From the Wilds5,288 CommentsRead More »

    By Ty Fitzmorris November is the beginning of the long quiet of winter for the Mogollon Highlands. The cold has crawled from the cracks of night into the light of day, and it has changed how all of the creatures of the region live. The coming season brings scarcity of food and water, along with low, sometimes killing temperatures, and every species, plant and animal, has their set of adaptations to these challenges. These adaptations are sometimes physiological and sometimes behavioral, though for most species there’s a little of both. Mammals (including humans) and some non-migratory birds begin to undergo cold acclimatization now. This includes redirection of blood flow away from skin, accumulation of insulative body fat and fur, and metabolic and chemical changes, all resulting in overall increase in tolerance for low temperatures. Insects undergo a wide variety of changes — some, including bumblebees, generate propylene glycol, or antifreeze, in their blood, which prevents them from freezing, while others develop the ability to raise their body temperatures far above that of the surrounding air, proving themselves anything but “cold-blooded.” Reptiles and amphibians are able to tolerate very low body temperatures without injury, though some snakes, such as rattlesnakes, gather together in large numbers in caves to avoid the killing frosts. Many birds, such as the swallows and warblers, migrate south, both for food and to avoid the cold. Meanwhile

  • Oddly Enough: November 2014

    Oct 31, 14 • ndemarino • 5enses, Russ Miller's Oddly EnoughNo CommentsRead More »

    When frogs hibernate, they stop breathing as they normally do and, instead, take in air through their skin. Frogs can be found throughout the world in a variety of shapes and sizes. some frogs are used by Aboriginal people to poison the tips of their arrows. One frog in Asia has feet so big that it can glide from tree to tree. When fully grown, one species of  frog in central Africa is no larger than a housefly. ODDLY ENOUGH … The Giant Frog of Africa measures 2.5 feet long and weighs more than 14 pounds. That’s larger and heavier than a standard mason’s cinder building block. ***** In 1682, the Vasa was launched by Sweden. It was built to be the largest ship ever. ODDLY ENOUGH … As most of Stockholm watched the ship’s spectacular launch, water rushed into the open gun ports and the Vasa slipped beneath the waves of the Baltic Sea. ***** Russell Miller is an illustrator, cartoonist, writer, bagpiper, motorcycle enthusiast, and reference librarian. Currently, he illustrates books for Cody Lundin and Bart King

  • The case for animal gun rights

    By Gene Twaronite Photos from two different observers — the first recorded case in the Sawtooth Mountains of Idaho — clearly show an adult female wolf, armed with a .444 Marlin, shoot and kill an elk hunter with one clean shot to the head. Witnesses report that the hunter did not appear to suffer and that the wolf then nonchalantly slung the rifle over her shoulder and trotted off into the woods without a trace. In the days following the incident, social media was abuzz with questions and theories as to how the wolf came into possession of a weapon, not to mention how it learned to shoot. Yet, despite an all-out publicity campaign and statewide wolf hunt, the killer was never found. Meanwhile, other reports began streaming in from all over the country. In New York’s Adirondack Park, a group of hikers observed a deer using an AK-47 to fend off a pack of stray dogs. The most surprising thing about the incident, aside from the military precision with which the weapon was used, was the way the deer appeared to aim just below the feet of the dogs as if to frighten them, and that no dogs were injured. In another case, in Kentucky, a bobcat was photographed employing a .22 Winchester to dispatch a rabbit. The photographer, a zoologist from the local university, then observed the bobcat

  • The Boeing 747 … it’s a big deal

    By Matt Dean The Boeing 747 is arguably the most iconic aircraft of all time. When the passenger  “Jumbo Jet” was first revealed in 1969, its immense size was gazed upon by the aviation world with low whistles and raised eyebrows. It didn’t take long for the general public to view the aircraft in the same regard. Because it was designed to carry more passengers and more cargo farther distances than anything that came before it, airline demand for the “Queen of the Skies” was instant. The first commercial customer to receive a 747 was airline Pan Am, who put the plane in service in early 1970. Like many successful airframes, a version of the 747 is still currently produced. While the technological difference between that first 747-100 and the up-to-date 747-8 is significant —  nearly 50 years of aircraft innovation — the characteristic physical feature of a half second deck on the forward part of the fuselage remains the same. A 747 is instantly recognizable by the second deck, but also by its four turbofan engines and a labyrinthine set of landing gears. As an Arizona kid, the 747 held a certain mystical allure for me. The Queen of the Skies was primarily a transcontinental aircraft, so they were unlikely to be seen in landlocked Arizona (except for a brief time in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s when

  • Mission quite possible: How America got its first original furniture style

    Oct 31, 14 • ndemarino • 5enses, FeatureNo CommentsRead More »

    By Jacy Lee Queen Victoria ruled England from 1837 to 1902, a period during most of which England was one of the major world superpowers. Victorian furniture was aptly named after this long standing ruler, regardless of whether it was made in England, the United States, or one of the many other Westernized nations. Victorian furniture was ornate, usually dark and brooding, and nearly always overbearing and uncomfortable. The same could be said of Victorians, i.e. the people, too. Toward the latter part of the 19th century, with the growing popularity of expositions and world’s fairs, an influx of new ideas bombarded the Western world. A new breed of both furnishings and social thinking began to arise. An ideology emerged that was based on simplicity, comfort, and nature, which translated into furniture, that was a direct rebuttal to decades of Victorian furnishings and ethics. This was the mission of Mission. The Mission movement, often referred to as Arts and Crafts, actually has its earliest roots in the 1870s. An Englishman by the name of William Morris (the inventor of the Morris chair!) redesigned some of the simpler Art Nouveau furniture to be even plainer. With the help of a man named Raskin and a designer named McIntosh, a few studios were born that were dedicated to this simpler form of furnishings with thought and philosophy intertwined. For America, the big

  • Peregrine Book Co. Staff Picks: November 2014

    Oct 31, 14 • ndemarino • 5enses, Peregrine Book Co. Staff Picks14 CommentsRead More »

    By Peregrine Book Co. Staff “The Insect World of J. Henri Fabre” By Jean-Henri Fabre The best nature writing on insects ever, as well as some of the best all-around nature writing. Fabre is the naturalist whose observations most impressed Darwin. Exceptional. –Ty “Typography Sketchbooks” By Steven Heller & Talarico Lita Brain candy for all artists and designers. Just open it up and see what’s inside! It’s great. –Lacey “Cloud Atlas” By David Mitchell Incredible language — comparable to Nabokov’s mastery. A labyrinth of a story — themes of colonialism, environmentalism, & of course, reincarnation. –Kim “Shadow” By Suzy Lee A beautifully rendered children’s book about the play of light, shadow & imagination. With little text, the story is left to your own creation. –Sarah “The Great Partnership: Science, Religion, and the Search for Meaning” By Jonathan Sacks Sacks argues that science and religion are both essential perspectives for understanding life, the universe, and everything. He says, “Let us join hands and build a more hopeful future.” —Tom ***** Visit Peregrine Book Company at PeregrineBookCompany.Com and 219A N. Cortez St., Prescott, 928-445-

  • Some ‘thing’: Agent Deep Black casts a critical eye on another peculiar image

    Oct 31, 14 • ndemarino • 5enses, FeatureNo CommentsRead More »

    By Agent Deep Black Recent photograph taken near Cliff Rose Subdivision, Prescott. Analysis: At approx. 2:22 a.m. resident awakened by a “rumbling” sound that vibrated his home. Typical, heavily-armed Arizona resident exited his house with AR-15 rifle equipped with ‘gun-site action camera, mil-spec.’ From the driveway witness took this photo as he pointed his weapon at the brightly-lit, disc-shaped craft. No shots fired, but witness reports soiling his pajama pants. Witness reports neighbor’s abduction in-progress when he came upon the scene. Entire incident lasted less than two minutes, estimated. Spacecraft “disappeared” after abduction. Witness reports weapon and camera inoperable after encounter. This was the only photo recovered from memory-card. Recommendation: Authentic. Neighbor has not been seen since night of abduction. Secondary recommendation: Do not point weapons at unknown advanced technology. End of Report. ***** Agent Deep Black files reports from The Bunker at an undisclosed location somewhere underground in Yavapai County. Contact him at Dale@Cybertrails.Com

  • How to choose the perfect plant

    By Gene Twaronite In finding the right plant you must keep in mind that there is no such thing as a bad plant, only bad choices. But how do you choose when there are so many thousands of possibilities? The first step is to assess your personality. Are you the kind of person who can really be trusted with a plant? Or are you the kind who goes into a restaurant and thinks that the fake plants are real and, worse, actually prefers them to live ones? If so, don’t even think about buying a plant. Assuming that you can be trusted, you need to determine how far you are willing to go with this. Are you looking for a one-night stand kind of relationship or a long-term commitment? Is your plant going to pine away in the lonely darkness for weeks at a time while you go out and have fun? Or are you willing to stand by it, in sickness and health, till death do you part? For those seeking a more casual affair, may I suggest a Sansevieria. Sometimes called a snake plant or mother-in-law’s tongue, this is the familiar houseplant often encountered in the darkest, dirtiest corner of your local saloon or barbershop. It is capable of surviving the most inhospitable conditions — under-watering, too little light, second hand smoke, disco music, and even nastier things

Celebrating art and science in Greater Prescott.

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