Anyway, she's a cartoonist — a self-described not-very-good writer and not-very-good artist that combine to form a rather excellent cartoonist. Her lecture was titled Drawing Words, Reading Pictures. If you had heard of her before, it's likely as a "lesbian cartoonist" with a long-running strip called Dykes to Watch Out For, or perhaps the misattributed Bechdel test for movies (conceived by her friend Liz Wallace and documented in a strip in 1985 … or so Wikipedia says).
She went into great detail about how she constructed one strip and quipped that you just need to repeat that a thousand times or so to make a book. She spoke a lot about her childhood, dovetailing into her most recent book, Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic. She spoke about her journal as a child where she began to realize that words alone were not adequate to relate an idea, adding small "I think" bubbles in sentences wherever meaning could be ambiguous. Later she started using a large caret-like gesture (^ only bigger) through words, and eventually discovered she could "protect a whole page" with one overlying notation. This eventually led her to using the comic form as a way to reduce ambiguity.
I was thoroughly excited by this notation. A growing panic and frustration develops inside me whenever I begin to discuss the utter inadequateness stemming from the bleeding ambiguity in language. I mean, "the sky is blue" makes perfect sense even though there are clouds that are part of the sky, or it might be the night sky, and blue … wow … I assure you it's not blue like my old Ford Escort which was also blue. So, stealing Bechdel's notation in typographic form, "the ^sky^ is ^blue^" makes much more sense to me. I had to ask if she finds that ambiguity relieved by cartooning (which she did) but I was more surprised at her surprise that I felt that way too. They had microphones up front, and when I was addressing her she probably took two steps back when I relayed essentially what I just wrote.
As such, I felt a kindred connection. I deduced who she was prior to the lecture (an easy task even though I'd never seen her photograph) and had felt that a bit already. I was warmed by the way she stepped partway up the auditorium to observe how the stage and computer projector were set up. And I was amused at a male crew-member gingerly adjusting her lapel microphone as if he were defusing a bomb.
In any case, I bought her book and had a chance to meet her and have her sign it. She even "^" notated my name and sketched her face with a cartoon bubble, "what is Jason really saying?", then with a wry smile added below, "we might never know." [Curiously, I recalled it from memory as "what is Jason saying really?", and "we may never know."]
I'm thoroughly enjoying the book. What I'm finding is that the cartoon format doesn't resolve ambiguity as much as it amplifies the ambiguous parts of the text. So like that "^" notation, it's another way to say, "this is how I think it happened, but you're never going to get it."
I didn't find it in my usual perusal of the Eastman House website, but George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) is apparently having a Photography Workshop on The Platinum Print: History and Technique today and tomorrow from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
City Newspaper][all ages]
This morning at 7:30 a.m. in the cafeteria overlooking the arboretum in
Bausch and Lomb
(140 Stone St.) is the Artists Breakfast Group meeting ... anyone interested in art or creativity is invited.
The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing Rude Boy starting at 8 p.m. According to the Eastman House calendar, "artfully merging real footage of The Clash with a fictional story concerning one of their most dedicated roadies, Rude Boy features unforgettable performances of 'White Riot,' 'I'm So Bored with the USA,' 'I Fought the Law' and many others, capturing Joe Strummer and his sneering punkish crew at their creative zenith."
Dryden Theater calendar][all ages]
The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing Get Crazy starting at 8 p.m. Again from the Eastman House calendar, "director Allan Arkush called upon his many years working for legendary New York rock club Fillmore East for this spoof that's every bit as funny and inspired as his Rock 'n' Roll High School."
Dryden Theater calendar][all ages]
This page is Jason Olshefsky's list of things to do in Rochester, NY and the surrounding region (including nearby towns Irondequoit, Webster, Penfield, Pittsford, Victor, Henrietta, Gates, Chili, Greece, and Charlotte, and occasionally other places in Monroe County and the Western New York region.) It is updated every week with daily listings for entertainment, activities, performances, movies, music, bands, comedy, improv, poetry, storytelling, lectures, discussions, debates, theater, plays, and generally fun things to do.
Music events are usually original bands with occasional cover bands and DJ's with musical styles including punk, emo, ska, swing, rock, rock-and-roll, alternative, metal, jazz, blues, noise band, experimental music, folk, acoustic, and "world-beat."
Events listed take place during the day, in the evenings, or as part of the city's nightlife as listed.
Although I'm reluctant to admit it, it is a Rochester blog and I'm essentially blogging about Rochester events.
I also tend to express opinions, review past events, make reviews, speak of philosophy or of a philosophical nature, discuss humanity and creativity.
Oh, and it's spelled JayceLand with no space and a capital L, not Jayce Land, Jaycee Land, Jace Land, Jase Land, Joyce Land, Jayce World, Jayceeland, Jaceland, Jaseland, Joyceland, Jayceworld, Jayceeworld, Jaceworld, Jaseworld, nor Joyceworld. (Now if you misspell it in some search engine, you at least get a shot at finding it.)
It's also not to be confused with
Jake's World or JakesWorld which is a site of a Rochester animator.
While I'm on the topic of keywords for search engines, this update includes information for Thursday, December 9, 2010 (Thu, Dec 9, 2010, 12/9/2010, or 12/9/10) Friday, December 10, 2010 (Fri, Dec 10, 2010, 12/10/2010, or 12/10/10) Saturday, December 11, 2010 (Sat, Dec 11, 2010, 12/11/2010, or 12/11/10) Sunday, December 12, 2010 (Sun, Dec 12, 2010, 12/12/2010, or 12/12/10) Monday, December 13, 2010 (Mon, Dec 13, 2010, 12/13/2010, or 12/13/10) Tuesday, December 14, 2010 (Tue, Dec 14, 2010, 12/14/2010, or 12/14/10) and Wednesday, December 15, 2010 (Wed, Dec 15, 2010, 12/15/2010, or 12/15/10).
indicates an event that's a preferred pick of the day ... probably something worth checking out.
indicates a "guaranteed" best bet for the particular genre of the indicated event.
links to a band's page on GarageBand.com which offers reviews and information about bands.
links to a band's page on MySpace.com which is a friend-networking site that is popular with bands.