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Patrick (Sundog) Sharp
Last Visit: 30 minutes ago
Ars longa; vita brevis
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PERFORMANCE PROFILE, CRITIQUE, LESSON PLAN, SKILL-TRAINING PROGRAM - all levels - by private consultation . . . er . . . maybe. But first you must pass THREE tests! Haha! _______________________________________________
Above: Left, My latest earworm; Right, the most innovative Judo training I've ever seen. __________________________________________________________
It's a Broken Hallelujah: I explained previously that emotions that usually follow as grief over the death of a loved one get used up on the front side when one participates in the dying process through co-meditation. This is especially true when dying is protracted so that both parties recognize that there is a need to adapt to it and respond to it effectively. This may be a year or two of illness, or feebleness, that dovetails into what's called the terminal drop, which is a steep decline of functioning marking the last six months of life. Sometime during that period it becomes clear that death is imminent, which is when the techniques of co-meditation come into play. By that time, the participants have been well conditioned for the final rigors. So, as with a long and difficult wrestling match, when the end of the end comes, it is experienced with relief. It can be peaceful. It can be ecstatic. It can be beatific. In any event, all emotion is used up. It's like a catalytic wood stove in which not only the wood is burned; gasses released during combustion are also ignited in the firebox before exiting the chimney flue. In this sense grief is a by-product that gets catabolized in the process of participating, so that either it is not experienced at all, or is experienced before the actual death, not afterward. The end is actually the end of it all. There is no grief. There is no need for grief, and, subsequently, for cleansing (ablution), as these come part-in-parcel on the front end. At least that's been my experience up to now. And I've been through it enough times to qualify the generalization. But this time, with Grizadora Duncan, things are different.
I feel as if I haven't fully come out of the trance, as if a part of me lingers in limbo, in sacred space. It's like the door between worlds remains open and I find myself at times on the other side, or as if I have an open wound of which I'm generally unaware, until suddenly, unexpectedly, it starts to gush. I don't hurt, or if I do the pain is so sweet I don't want it to stop, so it's not what I'd call grief. It's not something negative. It's a good thing. It might even signify healing, because it's all about feeling. Not feeling this or that, but feeling in general - that is, raising the feeling function out of the unconscious and making it a more conscious part of my daily life.
Maybe what I call a wound is more like a blow to unconscious defense mechanisms with which, typically, I'm identified? So, then, we're not talking about wounding, so much as disarming life-long defenses that started as protection against overwhelming emotions, though, in time, became a bulwark against emotion in general. To gain perspective on this, to be stripped of something I'd come to think of as a genuine part of me, is frightening to a point and somewhat confusing. I referred to "false selves" in a previous journal - this would seem to elaborate on that.
A cat died and now I feel. And while it doesn't hurt, it's bewildering, and I want to avoid it (feeling), or deflect it, or minimize it. But, I'm smart enough to understand that's not the right way to go, it's just that it's been the habit up to now. It's really difficult to do anything else, or even to know what the alternative would be. Well, not really. Thanks to participating with Griz, I know. She was not particularly intellectual. She was all feelings. And, now, I have the benefit of catching reflections of those feelings as they were exchanged in 2016 and, again, finally, this time. Sharing in that, seeing it from the other side, I can bring it home and make it my own. I can feel, again. I mean, I can do it, actively, not simply be exposed to it passively. It's like painting with color. It's something one can do. And one can do it directly, without filtering it through an intellectual concept. Of course it's the nature of consciousness, or maturity, that it always seems to come too late. If only one had known sooner; if only he could go back in time with what he knows now. But the way lies ahead, not behind; more accurately, the way is now. Always now. Only now.*
Physical Therapy/Martial Arts: The exercises are progressing to things more challenging than stretching therabands, like standing up from a chair. No joke. It occured to me that this is the precursor of doing squats with weights. The problem is it's embarrassingly difficult without weights. What rubs is that now that I'm familiar with the new approach, I see how I've been "cheating" myself by using the strong muscles to edge the weak ones out of the picture. Using my back and arms to boost myself out of a chair ensures that the left butt and quads see no benefit from a movement that could actually be done several times a day as good exercise for them. So, now, with typical Kung Fu mindfulness, I'm looking at everything I do that can be used to build strength where there is weakness - climbing stairs, rising and sitting from a chair, walking on declines, lifting things. Have to stop looking at these things as functions of an end goal and start using them to exercise! And it's not the first time I've thought about it. It's just that in the past I didn't stick with it because I didn't see results. I pushed too hard and expected too much too soon. This time I've calibrated correctly thanks to the PT team at St. Luke's. That said, there are areas where I could bomb and blitz with heavy weight exercises, such as deadlifts. If insurance permits more therapy time, I'll run it by the team.
Judo Exercise: I mentioned some months ago that I wanted to find a training partner with whom to analyze Judo movement from the ground up. Basically, I wanted to study principles in order to work out my own techniques. It's stupid to continue practicing things I can't do, just to look as if I'm doing them correctly. What good is it to do that when it doesn't result in the desired effect of throwing the opponent? (Beautiful form! Too bad it doesn't work.)
Well, this week I found a video of Hiroshi Katanishi, 7th dan, giving a clinic in training methods (see above). It was unlike anything I'd seen, so highly innovative. The fellow is actually throwing people without touching them. He makes it look so easy, which is as it should be. This is a long video that I've just started to study. Moreover, it's in French. But you don't have to understand French to get the gist of the Q&A and the Master's instructions. The exercises are demonstrated clearly, so anyone can imitate them.
This is where I intend to dig in if/when I get back to it.
Taking the Deviant out of Deviantart: DA seems to have targeted my gallery for porn. Sure, a couple of posts were clearly over the line. I posted them to test the limits and wasn't unduly dismayed when DA deleted them, though I thought that after so many years of residing undisturbed in my gallery that maybe these pics wouldn't be a problem. I was wrong.
That said, I was disturbed when they pulled a spanking pic that they said explicitly depicted masturbation. Disturbed because there was nothing explicit about masturbation in it. A girl is bent over the knee of another girl who is holding her but cheek. You can't see more than that, so anything else is a matter of subjective interpretation and/or innuendo, which at best is suggestion, so, by definition, has nothing to do with "explicit." The deviation in question is "Bound, Gagged and . . . ". And what? Well, someone completed the title with "Masturbation". I won't argue for my intent, here, because intent has nothing to do with it. It's a matter of what is shown explicitly, and that's not digital penetration of the vagina or stimulation of the clitoris.
You can check for yourself and offer an opinion to DA (should you agree with me) based on the color version that still occupies the gallery. Though do it soon, since that one is here on borrowed time. I mean, what difference does color make? If they delete the linework, the colors aren't safe.
Protests and arguments based on observation and logic didn't sway the judges. I think what the content suggests to them (not what is explicitly shown) dictates a decision one way or the other. Then it's just a matter of manipulating/interpreting the regulations this way or that to justify judgement. Call me cynical - or just worldly wise. haha. In any event, there are more important things to attend. Don't want to get married to DA, which is what would happen if I tangled with them over this.
Moreover, I kind of agree with them. I don't like seeing crass, pornographic content. But, then, I simply avoid it. I don't crusade against everything that doesn't please me. And I must add that I DO see value in imagery that has no redeeming artistic value, appreciating it through the analytic lens of Psychology. It's nice to know it's here when I want to study it. The last thing I want is for the site to be sanitized by well meaning "good" people. As for protecting the delicate sensibilities of others from my deviant art, I give it a mature content rating. If others don't want to see it, they could simply turn on their filters. That's the purpose of them.
One more thing - when flagging offensive content shouldn't there be some consideration to the weight of the protest? I mean there is a difference between one one red flag for a given post and, say, a thousand. Why not establish a threshold and use a counter, then wait till so many complaints have registered before intervening? Then notify the artist, explain the offense and what must be done to avoid deletion, and provide the chance to implement it. Doesn't that make good sense? Isn't it more fair than the way things stand, now?
* The feelings are so strong and come so abruptly that I'm forced to take unusual measures to deal with them. The strongest and most effective is also the most embarrassing: I've taken to carrying around and sleeping with a Teddybear. No joke. Mr. Huntington is made of a green valour. The soft feel reminds me of petting Grizadora. Intellectually it makes no sense, but the method (using transitional objects) has stood the test of time. It's as old as man and magic - older, in fact. On the most primitive (i.e. ,unconscious), level of the mind it represents denial of death/loss. That may not be a bad thing, for the time being, if it mitigates the shock of jump-starting the feeling function. I need time to integrate it, otherwise I feel like I'm split in two. Then, again, petting Mr. Huntington and talking to him as I did to Grisadora makes me feel a little like I'm losing my mind. Well, it's only been two days of that and tonight before I retire I'll set him back atop of the bookshelf.
Music is, perhaps, the WORST way to deal with feelings (well, the best and the worst. It's like color. You don't just jump into it without some schooling, first). It opens the door, sure, but then it overwhelms. Just try to close the door without shutting down the feeling function. I can't do it. It's all or none. So I opted for all. But that means I've been hearing "Travelin' Soldier" ever since Chevelle performed it on The VOICE, Monday night. I mean, it's been non-stop every waking moment. Worse than Hoku's "Perfect Day". At least Perfect Day charged the battery and got me up hills on my bicycle; I wanted to hear it; it didn't make me cry! LOL. Thank god for Mr. Huntington. I also found that actually playing the song over and over helps to extinguish the noxious response, or, rather, simply accelerates working it through. That's what I've been doing for the last seven hours. (BTW - Thinking about posting a deviation here at DA entitled "Dixie Chicks" just to see if it gets flagged as obscene.)
2) As mentioned last week, the art practice archives are completely gone, except for a single volume of pages sampled from the different years. I posted some in Gallery this week. Last night I went through the DREAMS archive, replacing the binders on 20 years of recorded dreams that I had removed to use on the Drawings! Haha. The collection of twenty volumes fits into a single milk crate. Got another twenty years on computer disks. Some of them are too old for my software to read. By comparison to the Art archive none of it takes up much space, so there is no great hurry to dispose of it. I'll just put it aside, for now.
In 1969, at age fifteen, while still recovering from the last in a series of operations on my leg for post-polio effects, I got my mother to drive me to CHARLTON Publishing Co. in Derby, Connecticut. There I showed my portfolio to the late George Wildman www.georgewildman.com who offered me an entry-level position. The perks: learn from the best ("on your own time").
This was near the end of Charlton's hay days. They had Giordano, Ditko, Boyette and a bunch of other great guys (like Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez). But my mother said, "No!" (About 35 years later when I asked her why she wasted everyone's time bringing me to the interview if she had no intention of letting me work, she said, "I never imagined anyone would take you seriously." )
After that I got into wrestling and martial arts, motorcycles and girls, continued my education through graduate school, then started work in a "serious" profession. Nevertheless; in the mid 80s, I took a half-time position so I could write fiction and do a full time stint at The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and Fleischer Art Memorial. But, when push came to shove, I returned full time to Human Service and Psychology.
Some years back, I wiped the slate clean and decided to start over - to pick up where I'd left off as a teenager - to do graphic novels, or bust. That's where I am, now - BUSTED. . . BIG TIME! Nowhere to go from here, except up! _______________________________________________________________________
Current Residence: Mt. Effort, (What an appropriate name!) Pennsylvania deviantWEAR sizing preference: Loose, so, large Favourite style of art: Scientific Illustration, Comic Book Illo, Genre Fiction Writing, Technical Writing Personal Quote: 'From my weakness I drew strength that never left me.' - paraphrased from Borges