The End of Summer

Pi and Goose in the pool

Happy dogs!

Going Dark – Brentwood Arts Exchange

Hey folks!

Here’s a cool event that I’m participating in! I’m not on Facebook anymore, I just copy information from there:

Brentwood Arts Exchange is proud to announce Going Dark, a group video exhibition opening in the Main Gallery on Wednesday, July 23 accompanied by a vibrant virtual component, streaming to your homes through our digital platforms.

Viewing schedule to be released by email, with various works highlighted across online platforms throughout the duration of the exhibit. Closing reception will feature a watch party with all videos streamed in their entirety.

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This is the first group exhibition in which I’m presenting animation. Please check it out!

A few days away….

Jim Doran Weird Science

It’s been a long time coming!

This is a screen capture of digital signage that is displayed on Towson University’s campus for my upcoming MFA graduate show.

I’ll share more shortly, but couldn’t wait to post this.

The Benefits of Radiation

I am happy to present my latest animation, The Benefits of Radiation. It’s the backstory for some of my action figures.

The story takes place in a Baltimore bar called Roshambos. You’ll figure the rest out if you watch the video above.

I’m happy with how this turned out. I’ve spent more time on this than anything I’ve completed to date. Time, both in terms of the hours it took to make, and also from the time I that had the idea for the story, up to this evening.

A ream of drawings...

I drew each frame on a light box and used about a ream of paper.

Drawing of a hand holding a can of space dust.

I finally found a use for Space Dust, too.

I enjoyed doing the foley for this. I enjoyed getting to know some of the characters. Perhaps you will enjoy this.

In any event, please please please… Enjoy Radiation Responsibly!

joie de vivre

I was going to start this by writing “These are strange times.”

There are batshit crazy times. I can literally point at current events and match them with the Book of Revelation. I mention this as a simple point of interest. I’m no biblical scholar, nor do I put any fundamental stock in the book.

I started this blog fourteen years ago, as of this writing. There’s a field in WordPress where you can give your site a title and add a tag line. Not knowing how else to describe it, I put joie de vivre as my tagline when I created this site.

General setting page in WordPress

Joie de vivre is a French phrase often used in English to express a cheerful enjoyment of life; an exultation of spirit. It “can be a joy of conversation, joy of eating, joy of anything one might do… And joie de vivre may be seen as a joy of everything, a comprehensive joy, a philosophy of life, a Weltanschauung.

Approximately 80% of the posts on this site are Art related. The rest are miscellaneous articles about web design, skating, tutorials, and joie de vivre.

I noticed that when I wrote about the good things in my life, more of those good things appeared in my life. I began to study the Law of Attraction as described in The Secret, the Abraham-Hicks books written by Esther and Jerry Hicks, Napoleon Hill’s works, and New Thought philosophy. I was convinced I was on to some great discovery. A big element of all these writings is gratitude. In a way, this site is a long thank you note. There are very few things I can control in my life, and gratitude is the skeleton key to the “engine room of my thoughts.”

The world, and the United States, is in turmoil. While plagued COVID-19, alongside shallow government officials that refuse to lead, during civil protests against police brutality and generations of racism, we head into economic peril not seen since the great depression – all while blatant income inequality is clearly evident and foreign governments interfere in our elections. Facebook continues to value profit over ethical practices, while the county wrestles with women’s rights, transgender rights, and human rights. Every day, I witness some new outrageous horror on Twitter.

I see these events, and others, as a chance for our world to heal, to grow, and for the human species to evolve and begin to properly care for our planet, the plants and animals we live among, and each other. There is a lot of real, hard work ahead that is going to have most of us feeling uncomfortable. Gratitude helps. Maintaining an “attitude of gratitude” allows me to see all the good things around me, while acknowledging, and doing, all the work I need to do.

For me, these joie de vivre posts are an opportunity to spend time focusing on things for which I am grateful. It is candle light for dark thoughts during dark times. I believe we all need this light – you have your own light in your own joie de vivre, and it’s worth celebrating. To not celebrate the good things in life, even the smallest things, even during the apocalypse, is to miss out on something important – a chance to be in the moment, to be mindful, and perhaps, happy.

Please make a note of your own joie de vivre, your own joys and triumphs, however small. May they grow and shine in your own life, amid the fear, grief and uncertainty we call face every day. I shall follow my own advice, and write more about my own joie de vivre.