Chain 05

Frost and Window
Medium: Photograph

Take a clear pane of glass; add layers of rime in geometric and random patterns of Nature’s invention and you have thephotographic analogy of handing over the key to the candy store to a wide-eyed child. Choosing from the endless photographic possibilities in the intricate patterns of frost was like choosing which canister to lift first from rows and rows of sugary confections. It was an embarrassment of riches. I could have spent hours working on this particular “puzzle,”deciding which angle honored the best truth of this event. I stared through the glass at the diffused glow of a rising sun, filtered by morning fog. I tried to find a solution that would bind all the elements together and articulate an idea that would speak to wonder, mystery and perhaps poetry.

Michael Zide

It was sunrise in Southern California, January 11, 1949. Something drew me to the bedroom window. I looked out to the front yard and for miles beyond. The familiar scene of my childhood was gone. Our front lawn with its towering evergreen tree, the vacant lot down the hill and the boulevard leading to Griffith Part were luminous. My world, where the landscape had been a constant was trasformed -covered now in a pure white blanket of what appeared to my five year old eyes to be diamond dust. It was a scene beyond my comprehension and my response was visceral. That moment is as immediate to me now as it was decades ago. My wife summed up the journey that followed perfectly. “That first snowfall set in motion both the search for a view of equal enchantment, as well as a visual memory in search of meaning.”

Establishing a point of view or personal vision is at the core of my work n landscape photography. Oscar Wilde said of another medium, “Every portrait that is painted with feeling is a portrait of the artist, not of the sitter.” Each walk on the beach or into the forest is an opportunity to get in touch with the landscape in front of the lens and the landscape within. For an image to speak clearly, the photographer must have something to say. Beyond that, there is always an element of change, being present at the right moment as the light reveals form that strokes a chord of recognition. From that point on, intuition and experience take over.

Why black and white? Black and white photography lays open the bones of the image. It’s direct and to the point.

Time and place are always present in the image. I photograph where I live because it’s what I know and it’s accessible. Everything changes with time, including the way I see. I revisit many locations over the seasons and over the years, hopeful that I can get out of my own way, and truly “listen with my eyes.”

Visit Michael Zide's profile →
Ice on the Sun
By John Forte
Ice on the Sun
Medium: Music

In this black & white photograph I saw the juxtaposition of two polarizing forces: the freezing ice against the warmth of the sun. I looked at the photograph… asked myself “what do I feel?”… Wrote it down, looked again, in a knee jerk, repetitive process trying to capture and translate the elemental layers of ice, air and fire. I wanted to sonically represent the chill, to express what it might feel like to be a droplet of water freezing to that pane of glass. It would sound like ascreech on a noteless violin I thought. Before the melody arrived, came the lyric “Ice on the sun” and with it a narrative in which I played two parts: that of a strong, heroic woman and an exhausted nearly extinguished man. Together these characters bear whiteness to this pane of glass and to this seemingly endless cold, dark night. But ahead, in the depth of the frozen blackness is the dawn, a star of hope that will guide them. No amount of ice can extinguish their love. I wanted the song to convey the threat of probable demise and the hopefulness of overcoming a seemingly desperate situation. The song is short and brief but compact, like it’s own little star, waiting to explode.

John Forte

Few understand second chances better than John E. Forte. On November 24, 2008, President George W. Bush granted the petition for commutation submitted by 33-year-old Forte, a classically trained violinist and Grammy-nominated singer, songwriter, and producer from Brooklyn, New York. Famous for his work with the multi-platinum group “The Fugees,” Forte was the quintessential rising star before landing himself in a federal penitentiary. His was one of only eleven commutations granted by President Bush during his eight years in office – a testament to the dedication of those who tirelessly campaigned on his behalf, including iconic singer Carly Simon and noted conservative Senator Orrin Hatch (R) of Utah. A brilliant young prodigy and dedicated student, Forte was awarded a full scholarship to the prestigious Phillips Exeter Academy and attended New York University until his career took off in the music industry. While working as an A&R executive for Rawkus Entertainment, Forte met Lauryn Hill and began working closely with “The Fugees.” Forte co-wrote and produced two songs on the multi-platinum, Grammy Award winning album, The Score. He went on to record two solo albums, PolySci (Columbia) and I, John (Transparent) which featured industry legends Herbie Hancock, Trick Esthero, and Carly Simon.

Show Full Interview

Visit John Forte's profile →
Medium: Paint

The song seemed, a fable about the beginning of time told by a troubadour from a land that no longer exists. Thestructure of the song felt like a comet so I structured the composition of my painting as I saw the comet in my mind. It carried a short burst of narrative, which trailed off in long bits and pieces interweaving themselves into different and new spaces. Layer after layer of music came to me as if it were growing fractals, tapering off, leaving me feeling as though I had woke from an impressionist dream. The lady in the painting is Dawn. She is the transference of energy between the ice and the sun. The yellow figure is the singer, the storyteller. The song didn’t belong in this world so I chose to not put my characters in a landscape but rather in the clouds to evoke an imaginative place not tethered to any world.

Ron Griswold

I was born a romantic dreamer. I remember wondering who painted the clouds in the sky, and when I died I wanted to go to heaven and do it. However, the environment that I was brought up in was very antithetical to art of any kind. It’s a wonder I became an artist at all. I was lucky to have a strong defiant streak. Also, I was very naive, so when the university asked me what I wanted to major in I said art. I thought artists were magical, and why not go for broke? I said I was naive, but I’m also very determined and never give up. So here I am today, living with a decision made without any forethought and not regretting it one bit.

Visit Ron Griswold's profile →
Ice on the Sun
Medium: Film

This song was such a great messy, complex contradiction. It was this destructive and tortured lyric laid over this catchy great grove. I wanted to capture the song’s happy groovy accessible vibe mixed with its weird dark undercurrent. I don’t usually utilize literal interpretations but the visual of ice on the sun was just so unique that I felt it called out to beinterpreted this way. My first images were of melting ice cubes on a sun that would run and melt and get messy. I put magnets in ice cubes testing for the perfect strength and danced the cubes across paintings filled with bold watercolors. As the film progresses, the sun moves across the sky. I wanted things to get messier throughout the film but then clear up in the end. To come back to a state of order, not cheerful but not maniacal. My last frame pulls back to a visual of the universe, or outer space: structured, organized, calm.

Trish Sie

Trish Sie is a Grammy Award-winning American choreographer and director, best known for creating OK Go music videos and directing the 2014 film, Step Up All In. She has worked in children’s entertainment, film, television, music video, stage, and ballroom DanceSport. Other projects include choreography for the Imagination Movers, ESPN, and Jason Hill, and creator of the musical science-based children’s show, The Snark-a-Snoops. Sie was born in Washington, DC. She has a degree in music from the University of Pennsylvania and is a professional championship ballroom dancer and owner of the Zebra Room Dance Studios in Orlando, FL.

Visit Trish Sie's profile →
Real Nice Girl
Medium: Perfume

What immediately captured me in this painting were the woman’s penetrating eyes. The distance of her arm from herface and the seriousness of her expression felt like barriers, keeping me out of the pretty, hopeful cloudscape in the background. I felt as though there was something deep and sexual and intense about this woman but that it would be hard to get close to her and I didn’t know if I’d ever be able to get as close as I would like. The painting has layers. At first glance, the painting is this pretty ethereal floating place but there is this determined serious complex look on this fiery red haired woman’s face. What came to me was a floral complex with a spicy side, A muguet with an exotic edge. It has spicy complexity and depth and character. The first three words I wrote in the margin of my notes were “real nice girl.”

Felix Buccellato

Felix is a Master perfumer as well as a certified flavorist with over 40 years of comprehensive experience in analytical and creative perfumery. As a perfumer for IFF, he spent 10 years developing analytical and artistic sensory skills. He is a current member of the Editorial Advisory Board for Perfumer & Flavorist Magazine and an active member and past president of the American Society of Perfumers, the Society of Flavor Chemists, and the American Chemical Society frequently speaking as part of the National Lab Day program. In 1981, he co-founded Custom Essence, and is now responsible for creative perfumery and heads research and development. Felix serves as mentor to all junior perfumers and laboratory technicians. He is an accomplished guitarist and National Guitar Workshop theme song contest winner.

Visit Felix Buccellato's profile →
Medium: Sculpture

The Film told me a story of the relationship between raw materials and the way they are transformed into art. The video revealed the inherent beauty in both the raw as well as the manipulated materials and how they are never in a fixed state. One is always becoming the other.

Griffin Loop

broad range builder.creator. from earth/snow manipulation to working with metals, woods, photo or paints. freestyle parks (snow/skate), large scale land art, metal furniture, art pieces. simple. clean. LOUD. my goal is to provide/spark inspiration or opportunity for others to express themselves,whether it be environments of activity or spaces to actually create. when we are able to be creative, develop our style, DO stuff with our hands, we find ourselves. i live in UT where i work for a company called Summit. i am inspired by people doing their thing. create. express. inspire.

Visit Griffin Loop's profile →