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…for these amazing gifts that included stripper glasses (both male and female), a “Bitch, please. I’m from Chi-Town” coffee mug, a framed Wisconsin puzzle piece, some 4×5 and 120 film (more on that later), and two onesies for Grey.

Gifts from Brandon and Jamie!

In fact, she wore the “Chicago Style” one home from the hospital yesterday.

Grey's first official outfit!

I liked the film best,

-Shady

…for this “OC Weekly” article.

It continues,

-Shady

…is trying to raise $25,000 to fund a new documentary film about American photographer/artist Joel-Peter Witkin. The name of the project (for now, at least) is “Joel-Peter Witkin: An Objective Eye.”

If you don’t know what Witkin does, he creates a lot of imagery like this:

Sure, it’s not exactly for everyone. But if you’re an art and photo nerd like myself, you love it.

Anyway, Marino started up a Kickstarter page to raise money for the film. The page contains an outline of what he’s trying to accomplish, as well as a fancy trailer! Check it all out here.

Oh, and did I mention that my good friend Erik Rose is also involved in the project? Yep, he is! That’s his illustration work on the Kickstarter page.

So support indie film (and artists like Thomas and Erik) and donate today.

Going to bed,

-Shady

…directed a film showcasing fashion designer Orla Kiely’s autumn/winter 2011 collection. Mercedes’ brother Ali created the score for the film.

Watch and listen to it here.

Embedding didn’t work,

-Shady

Wanna win some free stuff? Check out this new contest from “The Blarg.”

THE PRIZE:

Win a limited edition “Exit Through the Gift Shop” poster from Banksy!*

THE PROPAGANDA:

Exit Through the Gift Shop: Coming to movie theaters in select cities across the United States starting April 16th.

Exit Through the Gift Shop, the first film by renowned graffiti artist Banksy, became the hottest ticket at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival where it made its world debut. Banksy is a graffiti artist with a global reputation whose work can be seen on walls from post-hurricane New Orleans to the separation barrier on the Palestinian West Bank. Fiercely guarding his anonymity to avoid prosecution, Banksy has so far resisted all attempts to be captured on film.

Exit Through the Gift Shop tells the incredible true story of how an eccentric French shop keeper turned documentary maker attempted to locate and befriend Banksy, only to have the artist turn the camera back on its owner – with spectacular results. The film contains exclusive footage of Banksy, Shepard Fairey, Invader and many of the world’s most infamous graffiti artists at work, on walls and in interview. As Banksy describes it, “It’s basically the story of how one man set out to film the un-filmable. And failed.”

Visit the official site for the latest list of cities and theaters here.

THE FACTS:

One winner will be selected randomly from all entries. The winner will receive one prize. To enter, email me here with your name, age and address. The winner will be notified. Losers won’t.

I might even enter,

-Shady

*Prizes courtesy of Wooster Collective.

…I saw a rough cut of a documentary about Disney animation called “Waking Sleeping Beauty.” I ended up writing about it in “Variety” here.

With the film coming out in limited release on March 26th, the studio recently released this poster image:

Be sure to check it out when it comes to your town.

More than Mickey,

-Shady

…right here:

Butter My Butt and Call Me a Biscuit: And Other Country Sayings, Say-Sos, Hoots and Hollers by Allan Zullo and Gene Cheek (Andrews McMeel Publishing)
This pocket-sized collection of more than 200 quaint country colloquialisms is… well, exactly that. If that sounds like something you want to add to your coffee table and/or toilet tank, by all means. But to me, this extremely quick read feels more like a Jeff Foxworthy “You might be a redneck if…” joke than it does words of wisdom. If you feel the need to add Southern-fried one-liners like “I feel finer than a frog’s hair split four ways and sanded twice” to your library, this book is screaming your name. Unfortunately, all I see is a thin gimmick stretched out over 200 pages.

“Must Read After My Death” (Gigantic Pictures)
In the 1960s, Allis and Charley were living what appeared to be a charmed, all-American lifestyle with their four children in the suburbs of Hartford, Connecticut. Charley’s job took him to Australia four months out of every year, and the family decided to stay in touch with each other through Dictaphone audio recordings. As years passed, they continued using the Dictaphone to document their lives together. Unfortunately, Charley’s flagrant infidelity had cracked the family’s very foundation and, after seeing numerous psychologists and psychiatrists, their lives soon began to spiral out of control. Amazingly, they documented the destruction and devastation along the way. In 2001, Allis passed away leaving a garden shed filled with photographs, journals, home movies, and all of the Dictaphone recordings. Included with the family archive was a simple request from Allis: “Must read after my death.” Allis’ grandson, director Morgan Dews, did just that, and has edited all of the footage, photos and audio files down into this highly disturbing documentary about the rarely seen dark side of middle class America. What’s most impressive about the film is that it is entirely comprised of those found elements. There are no follow-up interviews, no background narrations… nothing; just the sounds and images of a family from four decades ago. Haunting and revealing, “Must Read After My Death” shines a spotlight on all of the dirty little secrets most families hope to keep hidden. Dews, on the other hand, has decided to broadcast it.

The book isn’t always better than the movie,

-Shady

…or the happiest, depending on how you look at it.

Creepy Disney World by Justin Shady

A few years ago, armed with a couple of medium-format film cameras, I went to Disney World and kept an eye out for some of the saddest, strangest and most miserable moments happening in the park. Surprisingly, a lot of oddness goes on within the walls of the Happiest Place on Earth.

From screaming kids to less-than-patient parents, Disney World is a great spot for people watching. Below are just a few photos I took during a visit in 2001. The complete series is around a dozen shots, but I found this handful of images while going through some old work and thought I’d share them with you.

All of these were shot on 120 film and cross-processed; the process adds an even creepier feel to the photos because they create an off-color and high contrast element to the images.

Click on each image to view a larger version. And be sure that you do, otherwise you might miss some of the creepy subtleties going on in the images… like the eyes of the girl eating a popsicle!

Enjoy!

Creepy Disney World by Justin Shady

Creepy Disney World by Justin Shady

Creepy Disney World by Justin Shady

Creepy Disney World by Justin Shady

Creepy Disney World by Justin Shady
It’s a world of laughter, a world of tears,

-Shady

Back when I was running “Tastes Like Chicken” we used to do a section called “Sketchbook.”

“Sketchbook” was a simple yet awesome idea that was thought up (I think, and forgive me if I’m wrong here) by Erik Rose.

The idea is this: A group of artists are given either a word or a short phrase. They then create a piece of art, usually a simple, quick sketch, and send it on over in an email.

Here’s an early example of it; the assigned word was “Poe.”

I loved this idea back when we were doing it for “TLC” and would like to revisit it on “The Blarg” every now and then. It will appear more sporadically than before, one every two months or so, but if anyone is interested either let me know in a comment below or email me at justin@tlchicken.com.

I’ll then compile a contributor’s list and send out a sketch topic along with a due date. If you aren’t interested in doing a specific one or can’t meet a deadline, no sweat. Just try your hand at the next one. Nothing is required. If you do one, awesome. If not, no big deal.

I won’t post the topic on the site, only the finished pieces of art after the deadline passes. I will link each piece to the artist’s website (if they have one), and will post a link to each new entry on both Facebook and Twitter.

And yes, I will also be participating.

This is open to everyone. If you’re an artist, awesome. If you’re not, still awesome. If you’re a photographer but not an illustrator, sweet. Like to make sculptures or edit videos? Still cool. The more diverse these pieces can be, the better.

So yeah, if you’re interested in at least trying it out, let me know. And if you have any artist friends who might be interested, pass this along to them.

I know a lot of us art school kids get burnt out on making shit after graduation, so hopefully this will at least serve as a way to keep our hands (and our brains) busy.

Etch a sketch,

-Shady

Old Poop!