bcholmes: (marxist feminist dialectic)

A new communist/socialist newspaper… published on a blockchain!

Everybody will be talking about it.

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: shadows moving faster than the eye (magic shadows)

FYI: “I’m in mourning for my life” is my standard response whenever anyone asks me why I always wear black.

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

Woo-Woo

Mar. 19th, 2018 06:36 pm
bcholmes: (eclipse)

I think I’m starting to believe in the link between vaccines and atheism.

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: (open the bay doors HAL)

I’ve played a lot of RPGs in my life. I’ve often been apprehensive about talking about my history with RPGs, though, because I went through a period where people used my nerdy interests as a way of discrediting my gender identity. “RPGs are a guy’s hobby,” is how the critique usually started. Comics, RPGs, and other nerdy pursuits: all things that guys are into. Not women. So if I like RPGs, that’s evidence that I can’t really be a trans woman. *Margaret_Simpson_noise*

I know tons of women who RPG, and tons of women who make comics. So, y’know, I don’t really believe those messages. But I can’t always quiet the memories of those critiques when they pop up in my head.

I guess this is just to say that I feel like I’m stepping a bit outside of my comfort zone to blog about about RPGs.

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Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: (comics)

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: shadows moving faster than the eye (magic shadows)

I have seen Black Panther. There was a lot to love about that movie.

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: (sawing for teens)

I’ve been enjoying the second season of One Day at a Time (the 2017 Netflix series). It’s very light, compared to just about everything else that I watch. And it’s very strange watching something filmed in, essentially, the multi-camera sitcom format, given how that format is essentially gone from TV.

In the first season, there were many many scenes in which I could really feel the hand of the writer shaping the structure of the scene. The acting was a little choppy. The second season, the acting is more solid, and I believe the characters a bit better. And it’s cute to see the 21st century equivalent of “very special episodes”. Thus far, we’ve had “Racism in the Shadow of 45’s Administration”, and “Gender Non-Binary People Exist and Confuse the Old People”, and “I Can’t Believe We’re Still Talking about Gun Ownership as an Individual Choice Instead of Actually Changing the Laws.” They’re ham-handedly on topic, but not entirely trite.

Part of my interest is that I used to devour the original series back as a kid. And while I can’t say that it was a good series, I watched it fairly regularly for the first five seasons. I started to lose interest when the core cast broke up (when MacKenzie Phillips was fired for drug issues). I like how the new series is using a re-scored version of the original theme music (although I otherwise find the “family album”-style opening credits underwhelming).

And here’s the thing I’m thinking about now. I watched a lot of TV as a kid (because what else was there to do in Sarnia, except develop a drug habit?), and I loved and consumed anything genre-related, even if it wasn’t very good (I’m looking at you, Star Lost). But when I filled the gaps between the few-and-far-between sf shows, I sought out sitcoms with female leads. One Day at a Time, and Alice, and The Facts of Life, and even Laverne and Shirley, and so forth. The show that feels like it should be on this list, but isn’t, is Mary Tyler Moore, which was approaching the end of its run in the mid-70s, which was when I started asserting my own tastes in TV. And then there’s Maude. One Day at a Time and The Facts of Life were probably the two that really leapt head-first into the “Very Special Episode” formula.

It’s really only just occurring to me now to think about the fact that, as a trans kid in the 70s, I hungered to see depictions of women interacting with other women and supporting each other through the twists and turns of life. And that that was going on at the same time that I was desperately trying to deny that trans-ness.

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

Joelcraft

Jan. 23rd, 2018 08:50 am
bcholmes: (eclipse)

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: (of cabbages and kings)

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: (comics code authority)

Urk. I’ve done it. I’ve ordered a Cintiq.

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

Well, crap

Jan. 1st, 2018 11:55 am
bcholmes: (Default)

It’s the “murderous trans woman” trope again.

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: shadows moving faster than the eye (magic shadows)

This year, I’m just gonna embrace the fact that TV is now so much better than most movies, and I’m gonna lead with that.

Here are my top five TV series of 2017:

Number five: Stranger Things 2. The kids are back on their bikes and the upside down is still dangerous. Eleven has evolved from “pretty” to “bitchin’” and Steve turns out to be a pretty good baby sitter. The show was still fun, immersive, and creepy. I liked that we got to see more of the world, I liked how Eleven has tapped in to the Phoenix force, and I liked the evolution of many of the characters. Just about the only thing I didn’t like was Eleven’s jealous shunning of Max. A solid, fun show.

Read the rest of this entry »

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: I was just a brain in a jar (brain thoughts)

I know. But I do not approve. And I am not resigned.

— Edna St. Vincent Millay, “Dirge without Music”

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

Lemmings

Nov. 13th, 2017 07:57 pm
bcholmes: I’m covered in bees! (bee sea)

I have a mastodon.social account. I’m @bcholmes@mastodon.social

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: (comics code authority)

I think I first encountered this video at least a year ago. Maybe two. It’s one of a series that Smith Micro Graphics made to raise the profile of Manga Studio (now called Clip Studio Paint and Manga Studio Ex is now called Clip Studio Pro).

The presenter is an artist by the name of D.M. Cumbo, who has been working on an illustrated story called Dreamside. At about the time that Smith Micro released the video, D.M. Cumbo was also making a number of videos about different Manga Studio techniques, but he’s gone a bit quiet on that front lately.

Cumbo’s art really stands out to me because of the vibrancy of colour that he achieves. In a later video, he says that vibrancy is really all about contrast, and that picking colours that contrast well is the key to creating vibrant images. He also really pushes the idea of bounce-back lighting in a number of his videos: he says that things really look “in the environment” when you can see the colours of the environment reflecting back on a figure or object in that environment.

There are three techniques that Cumbo describes in this video that interest me:

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Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: I was just a brain in a jar (brain thoughts)

I am sick of having to suffer so a man can grow. What is this, every Hollywood movie ever made? I am tired of having to confess to someone else’s crimes. I am tired of showing up at the banquet dripping blood like Banquo’s ghost. This should be your ghost, not mine. I am not the one who should be ashamed that you have done these things. I am not here to make you see the error of your ways. I am here to get through my life every day without inhaling thick lungfuls of smoke.

Because that’s what this is. This is like getting people who have gotten cancer from secondhand smoke to come testify together as a way of solving the problem. But you are the one who needs to stop.

— Alexandra Petri, “Men of the world: You are not the weather”, The Washington Post

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: (meshes in the afternoon)

One day in the late 80s, I was back at my parents’ house, between semesters at University. “I think you look like my father,” my mother said, rather matter-of-factly, and somewhat out of the blue. She went off to another room of the house and came back with a cardboard stationery box that I had never seen before. Inside the box, she produced a large head shot photo of her father, Walter Dynes, for comparison purposes.

I’m pretty sure that I was in my early twenties. Until that moment, I had never her say a word about her father. I don’t think that she ever mentioned him again.

At some point in my life, I’d come to understand that her father had died quite a long time ago, and that the person I considered to be my grandfather was, in fact, her step-father. Certainly, by the time of the great grade 7 family tree homework assignment, the details provided by my grandfather clearly spelled out the three maternal grandparents. But my bio-grandad’s figure seemed to cast no shadow over my family: he wasn’t talked about, no photos were out, and no stories about him were ever told. When I refer to him, I often call him my “biological grandfather” — a term that feels distant and removed. But it also feels apt because he seems distant and removed.

My father’s father, Vidal Holmes, was also dead. He died shortly before I turned two. But I was aware of his absence in a way that I was never aware of Walter’s absence.

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Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: (comics code authority)

This week, the Shuster Award nominations were announced, and for the third year in a row, the Toronto Comics anthology has been nominated for the Gene Day Award for self-published comics. We’ve lost out the last two years, and I don’t really expect this year to go any differently but, as they say, it’s an honour to be nominated.

Because of eligibility date requirements, the nomination was for Volume 3, which came out in 2016. But it’s 2017 now, and there’s a fourth volume. This year, the editors dispensed with the “Volume X” subtitle, and gave the book its own swanky subtitle: Yonge at Heart! This year’s book is a bit smaller (in a “number of pages” sense) than previous years, but what it lacks in pages it makes up for with vibrant colour! And, boy howdy, does that colour make for some gorgeous pages.

Read the rest of this entry »

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

bcholmes: I was just a brain in a jar (brain thoughts)

Lately I’ve found myself spending too much time arguing with “allies.” Whether it’s explaining to them, as a black gay man, why racism in the Gayborhood is a serious issue or why nondiscrimination laws should be statewide, it feels as though I’m having to defend myself to those who should be advocating by my side. What I have realized is that too many allies conduct themselves as service providers: They show up only when there’s an immediate need, they require me to explain the problem again and again, and they may or may not actually fix anything.

In other words, allies are more trouble than they’re worth.

— Ernest Owens, “Why I’m Giving Up on ‘Allies'”

Mirrored from Under the Beret.

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BC Holmes

January 2019

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