Tuesday, January 26, 2010

February 2010 - Thing-A-Day - Writing the story before it goes away

Just signed up for an exciting project in February, committing to create a Thing-A-Day.  It'll all be posted online, on a NEW special blog (as if we needed another one - sheesh!):  Worlds Largest Things on Posterous

I'm devoting my Thing-A-Day to telling the story behind the World's Largest Collection of the World's Smallest Versions of the World's Largest Things Traveling Roadside Attraction and Museum. I believe I'm in that crucial time, where memories are starting to fade (but can be revived), but haven't yet deteriorated into a glossy nostalgia. Distance of time has that double edge to it, making you varnish over some of the rough spots, yet enabling you to distance yourself enough to see some things that weren't so obvious up close and "in the time".

I've tried to capture or map out part of the story out a few times. I have a composition book with a breakdown of how to structure a book proposal, did a set of large panel paintings that reflected on my time in the desert and on the road in a non-linear, image-based way, and most recently completed a hand-drawn book that combined the words and images.

Now, I think it's time to really focus on the words and feelings that the images bring back, before they're gone forever. I have the previous 'maps' here for guidance, and a folder of images taken along the way that are sorted by date taken. Funny, how a tool so necessary while DOING the 'thing' ends up being a roadmap itself, a chronology that contains its own set of sparks. I'm hoping not to rely too heavily on the narrative that has become the 'tour' of those times - the sound bites and repeated story that I tell when someone asks about that time period.

Anyone who has ever been a tour guide at any historic structure knows exactly what I mean - the 'tour' becomes an automatic response, repeated so often that it becomes meaningless, a song you hum to yourself, even if the subject matter is of great importance to you. The period from 1999 - 2009 is in danger of becoming that sort of sing-song synopsis, and I'd like it to be real again.

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