For Friends

i was gonna write a comic strip

about you

a poem
a story
a song

this?

you were a
fantastic folk duo

an archer

a titan

a hunter

you were a player

cruelly playing

with the hearts of others

you were a
paranoid vision
readying to stab me in the back

you were
a ball of indestructible energy

an innovator

a lost cause

you were down and out again

and we

were all crying

how we love you

but you’re not a character

that simple words

can adequately sketch

not mine anyway

maybe someone else’s…

but i do wanna say something

otherwise
I wouldn’t have started this

right?

individually

and collectively

you

are

everything

more real than the universe

you’re tangible love, my friends

TANGIBLE LOVE

and you’re there

out there in the world

and it’s that

that makes the world

bearable

i love you

////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

The problems with valentine’s day

firstly, it’s my birthday, so fuck off

second, growing up

people would often remark on this

saying things like

“he’ll be a heartbreaker”

(negative attributions)

and

“aww, little valentino”

annoying,

especially when you’re twelve

go to an all boys school

and don’t understand girls at all

(I didn’t have a girlfriend until I was twenty)

but my main problem with it is this

it’s a cheesy love song

a rom-com

a mills and boon novel

it’s the reinforcement of old ideas

of what love is in a contemporary setting

it’s love contextualised through commericalism

consumerism

(the least romantic of any activity, surely)

it’s so out of touch

with real life

it’s a day a year where they devalue love

by demeaning it with

ideogram hearts

and cute teddy bears

it’s the enforcement

of a pact by flowers

passive-aggressive

possession

and the prescriptive

dinners by candle – light

I cannot stomach

sure, I’ve had them

but I can’t stand the idea

that a greeting card company

a chain store

or the smug git on the news

(not that I watch it)

should guide

how and when

I express my love

for another

in fact

I can’t understand

why anyone would or should

ever presume to suggest

how love is to be expressed

to anyone

at any time

ever

there may be a case

for the gentle advice

from a parent when asked

by a small child

but even then

maybe it’s best to decline

and let them see

let them find out for themselves

if they see love around them

they’ll learn how to give

and receive it

kindly

or with passion

and energy

or solemnity

as the situation should require

they’ll learn

we’ll learn

lets learn together

for fucks sake!

Lets chuck the teddies in the bin!

Dear friends,

 

I’m still about! Check out the zineography page for details on my new books… soon on my shop at illustratedself.bigcartel.com more details soon! X for now… a poem for you:

bureaucracy-01

bureaucracy-02

bureaucracy-03

bureaucracy-04

bureaucracy-05

Talking about the passing of time after work one night with a colleague, an interesting idea arose which has stayed with me… I’ve been thinking a lot and here it is:

When we are young, a unit of time, say a week, is a larger portion of our lives; to a one year old, a week is 1/52 of their total time lived. As we grow up the same unit of time begins to become smaller, to a 30 year old for example a week is 1/1560 of their life. Even though the week is physically the same (in terms of the movement of the Earth around the sun) it is experientially much smaller…

The adult life is experienced through routines, and data that we have accrued during our lives. So much data that we don’t really need to experience certain things any more to do them… Think about making a cup of tea, or doing shoe laces, something that can be done with minimum thought or effort. How often do you notice the sound of an aeroplane going overhead, or the colour of a bus, or the smell of the street? Do we experience these things? Or just exist alongside un-noticed occurrences, and as part of events where we respond automatically, unthinking, to stimuli that fails to stimulate anything but a rehearsed response…

When we are younger we are seeing things for the first time, learning new things, experiencing the world around us and all the things in it.

“Mum, what’s that?”

“that’s a puddle, dear”

“what’s a puddle?”

“when it rains, puddles are formed”

(child looks up) “why does it rain?” etc…  

The child is interacting with the world in many ways and thus a unit of time is heavier experientially. Mummy hardly sees the puddle really, until little Johnny asks or starts splashing…

As adults we are often “somewhere else” when experiencing the world; thinking about dinner on the bike ride home, day-dreaming about a holiday at work or having lunch with a partner, remembering how things were when you first met… In this disconnection from our immediate experience we are devaluing the unit of time experientially, and thus it passes without much notice, when we look at our lives, we say “wow, this year is going so fast!” another colleague might say “it seems to get faster the older you get…” and they’re right, it does seem to. We experience less during time; we experience time less.

The thing is to try and connect with our experiences and so really live the time we have. However, this would take some mental training, a revaluation of the value of experience and an understanding that experience is a deeply personal thing. Your green isn’t the same as my green, you have your experience of the colour green and I mine. Bacon frying in a pan has physical properties; the heat, the evaporation of liquid within the meat, and there are physical occurrences in us as we see the meat change colour, hear the sizzling sounds of its frying, smell the particles in the air around us or feel the heat of the hob. However, your experience of these occurrences is something just for you, and mine for me… The tendency is to accept a given value of the experience of an everyday occurrence and to not notice them at all, a bus is just red; that is it. Occasionally something from this order of events or occurrences will get through and we’ll experience them, often a smell; a certain perfume in the air while walking in the street will evoke an image in memory, maybe I smile look around, and notice other things about my surroundings, now I interact with what is around me psychically, and experience it more fully…

Seeking experiences out of our routines,  seeing, hearing, tasting, touching, smelling, experiencing things we haven’t before, or trying to experience them in different settings, with others we’ve never shared these experiences with before… Or even better; learning something new, being active, engaging with the world around us mean we don’t ignore the passing time, but we really live it…  then who will care how quickly it seems to go by?

Love all round.

DAP

xxx

This is a poem.  It started when I was reading this book in the bath called “Scripts People Live” by Claude Steiner,  it is a book on the subject of Transactional Analysis. It is very interesting to think about why we behave the way we do and why we make the choices we make, and I have been reading a lot on this subject and it has been informing a lot of my poetry and abstract drawing.

There are lots of people in lots of difficult situations, bad relationships, jobs they hate, drink and drug problems, depression etc, some people don’t think they’re good enough for love, or they don’t deserve to be happy, or maybe they have become comfortable in their situations because thats how they’ve learned to live and its more safe than making a change. Basically these are “Not OK” positions… Either they feel “Not OK” or that other people that are “Not OK” or both!

I was feeling a bit down, so as I read I started to think “It’s OK to love, it’s OK to be happy…” I laughed! Then I started to say them out loud. It felt really good! I was giving myself permission to get what I want!! So, I wrote them down and riffed out a drawing on the subject and relating to stuff I have been thinking about recently…That it’s Okay to get what you want, Okay to be happy and Okay to love.

These are the scans of the work, the photos of the booklet are in my Zineography page on this blog…

Love all round

DAP

xxx

For Julie Kane’s Colorless Green Ideas Zine (she is still taking submissions), but for a larger piece I’m working on also… I’ll speak more about the metaphor later. DAP x

Heres a preview of a zine I’m working on. A series of drawings entitled “Sleep”. I draw them in the moments before I fall asleep, in my dark room, with my eyes closed… I’m upto seven pages now. I’m trying to get a look at myself through stream of consciousness drawing and also trying to demystify drawing; its literally something that one can do in their sleep! Love all round, I’m going to bed!!! DAP xx

 

“Draw and Write

What we feel

Print

How we like

Publish

When we want

Contribute

Where we live

Include

Who wants in”

Love all round,

jimi

x

This is the first zine that I have self published using my real name ( jimi gherkin being my comic book pseudonym) I’m not sure why I decided now to start doing stuff under my real name, or indeed why I started going by the name jimi gherkin in the first place…a lot of people know me as jimi, and I’m happy to be known as jimi…

But whatever, this zine is of abstract drawing that I made a few days ago, accompanied by a poem about drawing… The point is that ANYONE can draw, and that drawing isn’t a scary thing, but it can be an insightful practise in learning about the self and our relationship with the world around us, as well as lots of fun! Its often I hear people say “I can’t draw”, this statement doesn’t make any sense to me, and with these simple dots, lines and blobs I hope to encourage those that thought that to have a go… Love all round,

jimi

For Melanie Maddison’s “Shape and Situate” Zine, I just drew this… the zine (now preparing for it’s third issue) is a collection of posters of inspirational european women, and I chose Grace Darling. I’m quite pleased with it so far, maybe just one more draft!

So, I just started renting a studio! I was indecisive (really?! me!!) and almost didn’t do it; its an expense, would I use it enough to make it worth it? Also, I work a day job so, would I have enough time to get in there and make the most of it… and the inevitable; I felt a bit of a faker! Y’know “real” artists have studios… But that was just b.s self doubt! I AM an artist!

Doing stuff at home is cool, but these last few months I have been living back at my parents, and there isn’t much space for me to get down to some serious work, I doodled a bit here and there, but I need to have some space just for myself, here someone is always around, the teevee is on etc etc… I love my family but its hard to work with everyone around… and it is work. Not in a negative way, I enjoy it! But I need to take it more seriously in a way. And here I am, taking it more seriously! I rented a studio, and I’ve been to “work” for two days! Better make the most of it while I’m on half term!

Anyway… today I got down to work on a strip for “Paranoia, Morbid Fantasies and the Mundane” with a character I doodled maybe 7 years ago called “Yer old mate hate”. He was on the cover of “jimi gherkin comics issue 1″ but I haven’t ever used him in a strip. The strip is called “self doubt review interview” and it isn’t pretty! YOMH is basically the personification of all negativity, he is someone we all have one of those relationships with, we’ve known him for a long time and even though we don’t like him, we have to spend some time with him from time to time… We just have to make sure he doesn’t out-stay his welcome!!! So yeah, look out, there’ll be a new comic before the year is out!

Love all round.

jimi

x

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