Saturday, November 12, 2016

An Orange Dictator

The Orange Hitler - Water color
I recommend watching the movie, Look Who's Back - This Orange Hitler was inspired by an unsettling comedy show within (and without) the film.

A Trip To Philly

(this piece is a work of fiction, all the people and places are embellished for satire)

May 16, 1776; Philadelphia, George Washington's Office Chambers

I saw a light in the window and two figures pacing over a large oak desk. The carriages, the ornate gate leading to a brick mansion-cottage. The lamp light light brightening as I drew closer to the door. I knew I should knock, but having arrived as I did, I found niceties too formal. This was an ambush from the future.

I found the room the two men spoke in all too easily. Their booming voices echoing through the halls. It was an argument, exactly as I'd hoped.

"In an ideal world we would have a Republican government..."

"The thirteen states will govern themselves, and work together to strive towards a better future. It is in their best interest to develop their own new American way of life, unique to themselves."

"General... If I may, I do believe that if we have an overseeing group of elected gentlemen, say a legislature... It might be their jobs to check and, uh, balance the decisions of the states to keep everything even."

"Ahem. We do not live like kings, Madison! We shouldn't usurp the power of the states without warrant. We will discuss this at leng..."

Knock. The two men paused, as if to sniff the air, then Washington continued.

" Now Madison, what I want to..."

"Um. Excuse me?"

The mean turned to see me, an illusion from the future, with the audacity to crash their wartime parley.

"And you are..." General and Commander-in-chief George Washington boomed at my flushed face.

"I...uh, I," I slowly gained my confidence. I needed to do this. I blurted it all out, word vomit, to our very first president. "I'm from the future, your future, well our future...I'm from the future United States of America. We won, you WIN, your war that is! Yay!! That's good news, right? Anyway... Its been one-hundred, no two-hundred, no two-hundred and forty years. Good job man! We just had an election, and it was the worst election we have ever had. I really truly mean it. We've had tough elections. There was the time WE fought to vote... yeah girls can vote now. And the time African Americans did too! Totally should have done all that sooner, but more on that later. This election could divide us, again. Like I said, should have given the African-Americans more... well, everything. But, we can fix it this time. See, we have this woman. She REALLY wants to be president. Kind of like you Mr.Washington. And her hair is similar... She is up against this tyrant. He might remind you of some certain awful Monarchs you've been trying to get away from. Very elitist, above the law, not really fit to run our large and beautiful country, many say. Now this woman, she officially received the most votes of the voting population. But, because in ten years you will develop a system that will lock our country's voting system in place, I need to ask a favor of you both right now, while it is fresh in your minds."

Both General Washington and James Madison stared steadily at my now sweaty brow, knowingly. Washington answered for them both, as ifhe had prepared for this very occasion.

"Thank you for your service you time-traveler. I do not understand your magic, but I do understand your war. A very saucy friend of mine used to say ' I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it'*. Please, ask your favor."

"Thank you Mr. President, Sir."

"No formalities here. General, is fine."

"Thank you General," I smirked a little and went on to ask one simple favor before I did any time-travel, pardox-creating, butterfly wing beating messes. "Could you please remind us to update something called the electoral college every 50 years to keep us fresh or consider, only consider, the popular vote. Voting just gets weirder and weirder the bigger we get and more our country changes. Oh, and I know I said that was it, but one more thing. Words won't mean the same thing they do in 240 years time, so choose carefully. Bye founding fathers..."

And I suddenly found myself back here, in my room, in 2016. Just like that. I hope the vanishing didn't freak them out too bad?


Meanwhile, back in Philadelphia, 1776, Washington's Chambers...

General Washington stared, dumbfound at the dead air directly in front of his doorway. It wasn't dead air one millisecond ago. In fact, a very strange person, with glasses, short hair, blue pant material and a cheap horrendous half-sleeve blouse that looked like a black potato sack was occupying that very space a millisecond ago.

"Words don't mean the same thing..." He muttered, angrily.

Washington grabbed the bottled of rum off his desk.

Madison sat down, with a pen at the ready. "Would you like to start over, Sir?"

*S. G. Tallentyre/Voltaire

Thursday, November 10, 2016


If anyone is still watching this, you might be thinking, huh, that person woke from whatever type of coma they may or may not have been in. Or you probably didn't think anything of it. I wouldn't. I'm too busy trying to make heads or tails of what we are dealing with. It is hard to grasp how we got here, but you and I both know how it happened. We lived it. But still... It is difficult to take it ALL in, really accept what just happened.

There's no time to waste! We've got to hurry. I know what I just wrote about taking it all in, difficult to grasp, yada-yada-yada, but we are hemorrhaging and need to take action quick. If we put pressure there... good. Now slow the breathing...great. The country patient is stable for now.

At least now we'll have time to decide what to to with the million dollar surgeons's bill after the health insurance pulled out and in home care after our losing job...

Sorry not sorry, out of satire mode now.

If you are sad, please go read satire, consume it, then create it... and possibly make a change. Lets get up, do something.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Street Photography: Construction On Skyline, and a Challenge

Street photography is difficult down in my neighborhood. It's just a nice, lazy suburb, and I don't like to bother my neighbors too much with my lens in their faces. Maybe I'm too nice or too timid, but I tend to stick to photographing nature around my home, because that is what I am comfortable with, and honestly, it's what I see when I look out the window.

Lately we've had an ongoing construction project close by. An entire street is closed to thru traffic for the Summer, and was for a good part of the Spring too. After a while, this project got me thinking more in-depth about urban photography. Street photography doesn't have to be just city dwellers on the street, living the city life, it can be snippets of still life brought about by change in the neighborhood. After all, "Art is not what you see, but what you make other's see," as the French Impressionist Edgar Degas so aptly said.

So here is my challenge to other local (and non-local) photographers. Look for art in the unexpected, and show your unique point of view through your work, whether it is a road construction project, farming or garden work, misplaced shoes, or a speed boat out on the water.... Below are some of my pieces from the construction site.

street photography 1, Salem, Oregon, Lisa Miller

street photography 2, Salem, Oregon, Lisa Miller

street photography 3, Salem, Oregon, Lisa Miller

street photography 4, Salem, Oregon, Lisa Miller

UPDATE July 4, 2015: for more street photos please visit my Flickr albums, River Front Park and Downtown Salem

Friday, May 8, 2015

"A Day In The Life" Photo-A-Day Challenge: Week 4

For the month of April I worked on a specific photography technique: Subject Isolation. And what better way to do this than a "day in the life" photo-a-day challenge. And yay, I got outside more!!

Its the last week, and boy am I itching to use f5.6+. I may need a week of only shooting f8 to stop feeling so near sighted... but this was a really great exercise. I also stuck to only one lens a week at a time. I recommend exercises like this to anyone breaking in new (or new to them) lenses, so you know their strengths, weaknesses, and to get comfortable. These are also good exercises to do periodically for yourself, just like practicing scales for a musician.

If you missed the previous weeks, they can be viewed here: Week 1Week 2, Week 3

Day 22:
wildflowers, A Day in the Life, Photo-A-Day April 2015, Day 22, by Lisa Miller

Day 23: 
glass lamp, A Day in the Life, Photo-A-Day April 2015, Day 23, by Lisa Miller

Day 24:
penny royal flowers, A Day in the Life, Photo-A-Day April 2015, Day 24, by Lisa Miller

Day 25:
trillium flower, A Day in the Life, Photo-A-Day April 2015, Day 25, by Lisa Miller

Day 26:
kale salad, A Day in the Life, Photo-A-Day April 2015, Day 26, by Lisa Miller

Day 27:
garden coffee, A Day in the Life, Photo-A-Day April 2015, Day 27, by Lisa Miller

Day 28:
macro mushrooms, A Day in the Life, Photo-A-Day April 2015, Day 28, by Lisa Miller

Day 29:
purple iris, A Day in the Life, Photo-A-Day April 2015, Day 29, by Lisa Miller

 © 2015, Lisa Miller - All Rights Reserved - Thank you!