You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Political Arts & Crafts’ category.

Free Tutorials

For crafty types on a budget, here is a list of 23 Exciting Dollar Store DIY Projects.

Browse other free tutorials previously mentioned in this blog (along with pictures) right here.

Miscellaneous Links

I once had a pet hedgehog but even I never thought of this when Spike was still alive: Someone had put up homemade scenery based on the video game Sonic the Hedgehog and had a real hedgehog go through that scenery, complete with actual music and sound effects from the video game.

Following on the heels of If American Girl Dolls Were Real Girls, here’s another video that’s a trailer for a movie that will probably never get made—American Girls: The Action Movie (featuring a cameo by Barbie).

For current progressive activists or those who are seriously interested in the history of the progressive/labor movement in the United States is in for a real treat. The University of Michigan has recently digitized its Joseph A. Labadie Collection specializing in vintage protest posters and signs promoting labor unions, pacifism, ecology, civil rights, and other similar issues. All the graphics are in high resolution and they are free to download and use as you see fit.

Some really sophisticated and detailed drawings that were done using only Bic ballpoint pens.

Open Letter to My Fellow Whiteys is a must-read for Americans of European descent.

Here is the thirty-ninth video in a series of computer animations called The Unicorn With An Attitude that I started back in the 1990’s in an ill-fated attempt to show off my abilities as an artist and a computer whiz in the hopes of either 1) get famous or 2) get a higher paying job than the office administrative work that I was frequently offered.

This is another one of my more political animations that I created just in time for St. Patrick’s Day. As the original writeup for this animation puts it:

The Unicorn With An Attitude meets a Leprechaun With An Attitude with violent yet funny results!

I created this animation back in 2001 around the time when various LGBTQ Irish-American groups tried for years to participate in the St. Patrick’s Day parades in both Boston and New York City (starting in the 1990’s) only to be denied by the organizers in both cities. They tried filing lawsuits only to have the judges side with the organizers.

To me it was totally surreal because at that same time I started to know more open LGBTQ people in my Unitarian Universalist congregation (that denomination was in the process of encouraging its member churches to go through the Welcoming Congregation program in order to be more welcoming to those whose orientations are anything other than cis-gender heterosexual. On top of that, I am of both Irish and Scotch-Irish ancestry (along with German, Scottish, English, Welsh, and Czech) so I definitely paid attention to what was going on with the effort to diversify the St. Patrick’s Day parades.

In response to the news at the time, I created “Leprechaun” where The Unicorn With An Attitude meets a leprechaun at the end of a rainbow. The two fantasy creatures hit it off real well until the leprechaun started to display an ugly side of himself and the unicorn reacted to this in a way that only a unicorn could.

Thanks to an increasing tolerance towards LGBTQ in recent years (including the recent Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage in all 50 states in the United States), this animation is now quaint but it still serves as a reflection of a less tolerant past from not too long ago. This year, 2015, marks the first time that openly gay groups could march in Boston and New York City on St. Patrick’s Day.

So, without further ado, here is “Leprechaun.”

I’ll admit that I initially felt numb when I heard about the landmark Supreme Court ruling yesterday. I think it’s because of the fact that ever since my own marriage suddenly imploded in late 2011, I’ve become pretty jaded about the whole institution of marriage altogether. While I’m happy that my LGBTQ friends can now have the opportunity to marry whomever they want, please forgive me for not being as enthusiastic as I would’ve been had that same ruling been made prior to December, 2011.

I saw that social media have erupted with all kinds of rainbow graphics and many of my friends have plastered rainbow-themed photos on Facebook. Late last night before I went to bed, I did my own rainbow themed picture. I did it in Tux Paint because I was pretty tired (I went to a farewell party that was thrown for a longtime member of my support group for people who are separated or divorced because she’ll be moving to Florida soon then, on the way home, I made a brief stop at a local coffeehouse where I ran into some more of my friends who were decked out in rainbow-themed shirts and other accessories while celebrating the Supreme Court decision) and I didn’t have the energy to work on some involved art project late on a Friday night.

So I turned to Tux Paint where I used a few simple features (like the Stamp and Magic tools) and came up with this picture.

20150626225726

http://www.nablopomo.com

Here is the thirty-eighth video in a series of computer animations called The Unicorn With An Attitude that I started back in the 1990’s in an ill-fated attempt to show off my abilities as an artist and a computer whiz in the hopes of either 1) get famous or 2) get a higher paying job than the office administrative work that I was frequently offered.

This one is among my more political animations. As the original writeup for this animation puts it:

With the 2000 elections in a dead heat, the two candidates appear on the new season of the popular and controversial CBS game show Survivor—Republican presidential candidate George W. Bush and Democratic presidential candidate Al Gore. Who ever triumphs in the Austrailian Outback is the next President of the United States. (Watch out for that Unicorn With An Attitude, though!)

I created this around the time of the contentious 2000 U.S. Presidential Election where the votes between George W. Bush and Al Gore were so close that there was a battle to determine whether there should be a recount. This Wikipedia entry provides detail on how close the voting really got.

I uploaded this parody video where I proposed a way of deciding how the new president will be selected: By going on a special edition of the then-new reality show Survivor, where both men would go on challenges in the Australian Outback. The Unicorn With An Attitude appears towards the end while making a special political statement.

Shortly after I uploaded this video, the U.S. Supreme Court halted the recount that had just started in Florida and declared George W. Bush to be the next President of the United States. And the rest is history with the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the invasion of Afghanistan, the invasion of Iraq, the crashing of the economy in 2008, etc.

So, without further ado, here is “Survivor.”

http://www.nablopomo.com

Here is the thirtieth video in a series of computer animations called The Unicorn With An Attitude that I did back in the 1990’s in an ill-fated attempt to show off my abilities as an artist and a computer whiz in the hopes of either 1) get famous or 2) get a higher paying job than the office administrative work that I was frequently offered.

I created this animation way back in 1999 and I actually uploaded it on various BBS as well as CompuServe. I originally created it as a QuickTime movie using various software for an Apple Macintosh. I have totally remastered it in high definition video using Apple iMovie. As for the music, I used one of YouTube’s royalty-free songs.

At that time I started to experiment with doing spoofs of then-current news stories. “Nationalism Sucks!” was a parody of the whole nightmare situation that went down in the former Yugoslavia from 1991-2001 where the nationalists were hell-bent on attacking each other and the average people were literally caught in the crossfire.

I created this animation at the time of the Kosovo War, which included NATO raining bombs on Serbia and the people of Kosovo enduring ethnic cleansing. It was one of those wars where, at times, it was hard to pick a side to root for because innocent civilians on all sides were killed.

I picked then-Serbian leader Slobodan Milošević to parody because he basically ignited Serbian nationalism that turned into genocide and ethnic cleansing against non-Serbians and led to those Balkan wars. I had him wearing one of those Target t-shirts that were popular in Serbia during the NATO bombings. As the original writeup for this animation said:

Serbian President Slobodan Milošević meets The Unicorn With An Attitude.

Even though The Unicorn With An Attitude put Milošević in his place, in real life Milošević would later be arrested and put on trial in the Hague after he was indicted by the United Nations’ International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia. He was found dead in his prison cell of a heart attack before the trial ended. Since his death things have gotten relatively peaceful in the Balkans and the people there have basically moved on with their lives.

So, without further ado, here is “Nationalism Sucks!”

Here is the twenty-eigth video in a series of computer animations called The Unicorn With An Attitude that I did back in the 1990’s in an ill-fated attempt to show off my abilities as an artist and a computer whiz in the hopes of either 1) get famous or 2) get a higher paying job than the office administrative work that I was frequently offered.

I created this animation way back in 1999 and I actually uploaded it on various BBS as well as CompuServe. I originally created it as a QuickTime movie using various software for an Apple Macintosh. I have totally remastered it in high definition video using Apple iMovie. As for the music, I used one of YouTube’s royalty-free songs.

As I originally described this video:

In this sequel to A Presidential Question, the Unicorn is taking a social studies test and gets stumped on the question that asks to name at least two functions of the Congress. Drawing upon earlier memories, the Unicorn answers that question in an unique way.

Like the earlier A Presidential Question, this one is also a satire of when President Bill Clinton was impeached based mainly on his sworn testimony regarding his affair with a White House intern named Monica Lewinsky. During that time Hustler magazine publisher Larry Flynt placed an ad offering a reward for any information about any GOP congressional members who are also cheating on their spouses. (Flynt hit pay dirt when he got the goods on Louisiana Congressman Bob Livingston and Rep. Livingston had to admit that he cheated on his wife.)

So, without further ado, here is “A Congressional Question.”

You can learn more about this infamous incident in American history at:

Wikipedia

“Larry Flynt: Democrat, Patriot, Pornographer Jumps Into the Fray Over Sex, Politics”, Los Angeles Times, December 27, 1998

 

Here is the twenty-fourth video in a series of computer animations called The Unicorn With An Attitude that I did back in the 1990’s in an ill-fated attempt to show off my abilities as an artist and a computer whiz in the hopes of either 1) get famous or 2) get a higher paying job than the office administrative work that I was frequently offered.

I created this animation way back in 1998 and I actually uploaded it on various BBS as well as CompuServe. I originally created it as a QuickTime movie using various software for an Apple Macintosh. I have totally remastered it in high definition video using Apple iMovie. As for the music, I used one of YouTube’s royalty-free songs.

“A Special Public Service Announcement” is a parody of the Clinton Administration’s continuation of the War on Drugs (which began under Ronald Reagan) by funding the airing of these awful TV ads while giving short shrift to funding treatment centers to help drug addicts. Here’s one of them featuring Rachael Leigh Cook:

As the original writeup for this animation puts it:

A parody of the anti-drug ads that frequently air on American television.

With more and more states decriminalizing marijuana and with more media attention focused on people who have received harsh prison sentences (including serving longer sentences than even rapists and murderers) for possessing less than an ounce of marijuana, maybe one day there won’t be a War on Drugs, which has harmed more American lives than even heroin or cocaine.

So, without further ado, here is “A Special Public Service Announcement”:

Here is the twenty-third video in a series of computer animations called The Unicorn With An Attitude that I did back in the 1990’s in an ill-fated attempt to show off my abilities as an artist and a computer whiz in the hopes of either 1) get famous or 2) get a higher paying job than the office administrative work that I was frequently offered.

I created this animation way back in 1998 and I actually uploaded it on various BBS as well as CompuServe. I originally created it as a QuickTime movie using various software for an Apple Macintosh. I have totally remastered it in high definition video using Apple iMovie. As for the music, I used one of YouTube’s royalty-free songs.

As the original write-up for this animation puts it:

Three ultra-paranoid critters decide to start an underground militia movement after they think they see a United Nations black helicopter flying in the air.

I did this animation at a time when the right-wing militia movement was getting media attention, especially in the wake of the Oklahoma City bombing, which exposed the existence of these groups in the first place. I did a parody featuring the real attitudes of those on the far right at the time.

The sad part is that there is still this extreme right wing paranoia that’s fueled in large part by right wing media outlets like Fox News and Rush Limbaugh.

So, without further ado, here is “Paranoia.”

Here is the nineteenth video in a series of computer animations called The Unicorn With An Attitude that I did back in the 1990’s in an ill-fated attempt to show off my abilities as an artist and a computer whiz in the hopes of either 1) get famous or 2) get a higher paying job than the office administrative work that I was frequently offered.

I created this animation way back in 1998 and I actually uploaded it on various BBS as well as CompuServe. I originally created it as a QuickTime movie using various software for an Apple Macintosh. I have totally remastered it in high definition video using Apple iMovie. As for the music, I used one of YouTube’s royalty-free songs.

I did “A Presidential Question” back during the time that President Bill Clinton was actually impeached by Congress because he lied under oath about his affair with a White House intern named Monica Lewinsky. I was feeling very discouraged by what was happening in Washington, DC not only with this scandal but with previous presidential scandals involving John F. Kennedy (numerous extramarital affairs), Richard Nixon (Watergate), and Ronald Reagan (Iran-Contra).

As my original write-up for this animation described it:

The Unicorn is taking a social studies test and gets stumped on the question that asks to name at least two duties of the President. Drawing upon earlier memories, the Unicorn answers that question in an unique way.

So, without further ado, here is “A Presidential Question.”

Santa ClausBaby New Year

 

 

 

 

 

Just like Halloween and Christmas before it, New Year’s Day happens to fall on a Throwback Thursday this year and I have something appropriate.

Back in 2012, while I was trying to make sense of my husband’s abrupt walkout on me with zero advanced notice or warning, I decided to take part in Artomatic 2012, a month-long art event that was held in a former office building in the Crystal City area of Arlington, Virginia. Basically Artomatic is a non-juried show and spaces are given to those artists who are first-come-first-served.

For my own exhibit space I came up with the idea of doing a parody of the Occupy Wall Street movement that was raging at the time called “Occupy the Dollhouse.” I was inspired by a Facebook page called “Occupy Legoland” (which no longer exists—a Twitter account by that name is still up but it hasn’t been updated since April) where someone did re-enactments of the Occupy movement using Legos and the artist behind it had gotten considerable attention in the mainstream media. I was inspired to do something similar but I decided to use dolls instead of Legos.

My exhibit was well received by visitors and it was even mentioned in an article for a publication that was put out by Occupy DC. You can read more about Occupy the Dollhouse and Artomatic 2012 in previous blog posts.

In any case, I tried to keep Occupy the Dollhouse going online for a little while longer after Artomatic ended. Both the viral Kony 2012 campaign and more media attention focusing on a subset of My Little Pony fans known as “Bronies” inspired me to create “Pony 2012″. I also made a statement about the union protests of Walmart on Black Friday that year.

After 2012 I began to run out of new material. I was going through a devastating divorce plus local officials nationwide began to crack down on the Occupy camps that had sprung up. I decided to let Occupy the Dollhouse go dormant while I focus on other things.

As 2014 began and people began the #BringBackOurGirls campaign online, I thought about reviving Occupy the Dollhouse for that one but I was kind of lazy and I never got around to it. I was finally motivated to revive that series when a new movement known alternatively as #HandsUpDontShoot#BlackLivesMatter, and the Ferguson Unrest had sprung up to protest this disturbing new trend—white police officers killing unarmed African Americans.

So I did a revival with a few new Occupy the Dollhouse photos depicting Hands Up, Don’t Shoot and a die-in at the American Girl Place. I thought I was done for the year but then there was this horrible incident when an African American man with a history of mental illness named Ismaaiyl Brinsley killed two NYPD police officers as a twisted revenge for the chocking death of Eric Garner that was perpetrated by a different police officer. Of course the pundits at Fox News began to blame the protesters for inspiring Brinsley to brutally kill those police officers before he killed himself. As a result, I ended the year 2014 with a few new photos that I posted online on December 30.

I also decided to compile all of the Occupy the Dollhouse photos I’ve done as of 2014 into a video slideshow complete with backup music. You can now view all of the photos along with the original captions in the below video.

I don’t know if I’ll continue Occupy the Dollhouse into 2015 or not. (The new year is only one day old as of this writing.) It really depends on whether something major happens, if I have an idea on how I can use dolls to respond to that incident, and if I have the time or energy to do this. If I do something new, I’ll definitely post about it in this blog.

Previous Entries

Categories

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 235 other followers