Making Art on the Verge of War

The Russians invaded Ukraine yesterday. In a certain way, it feels like the past few years have been leading up to this – Trump’s election was a major step towards destabilizing the world, then we had a major world wide pandemic, and now here we are with war in Europe. We’ll see where this goes, but I’m not optimistic about this.

I was getting geared up for 2 different shows; an installation at Gray Area and some video work at the Commonwealth Club. The piece for Gray Area is an audio piece that deals with future narratives, specifically about the changing nature of the office and how most people who go to offices don’t really want to be there. And how, if given a good chance, they’d abandon it all together. The piece for the Commonwealth Club is video art accompaniment for a jazz trio on a multiscreen display. The focus needed for creative endeavors is tough enough to muster in the best of times and it feels especially weird to promote one’s projects at a time like this. There’s gonna be some figuring out around this I suspect for a lot of folks … so I’m not feeling that alone about it…

Pro Tip – Photos in Word Press

If you’re using Word Press and using your website to highlight your photography, and you decide to use a gallery plugin to help you with that, here’s a pro tip:

Don’t use the photo gallery plugin’s media upload. Instead, use the native media library in Word Press to handle uploading and management of your images and their meta data.

Some plugins don’t allow you to access photos outside of it being instantiated. If those images are in the media library, you’ll always be able to use them in more places than in just the gallery. You can put all the meta data that you want on the images that will always be used with them, wherever they get used. Most photo gallery plugins will allow you to individually adjust images and meta data when you create a gallery, if something unique for that specific gallery is needed.

Most software operates on the hostage model- they want to capture your data or content and force you into a subscription or fee to access it or use it. This is why most photo gallery plugins want you to upload through their system directly. It’s better to manage in the CMS (Word Press in this case) and keep control. Only use the photo gallery plugin to make the gallery presentation itself.