Monthly Archives: June 2012

Regendans


A video poem inspired by rain. We've had intermittent rains and thunderstorms over the last two weeks, so I got out (wet) and shot around the neighborhood. Some shots (dry and lazy) were taken from inside the house.
The title means Raindance in Dutch and is dedicated to my virtual friend Ben for his Dutch tutoring. Thanks Ben!
Enjoy the raindrops,
Leo
Music: Floating – Divinity Project, Matti Paalanen: Composer :: http://www.jamendo.com/en/track/18231/floating – Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0) (remix by Leo Bar)
Paintings Oil: Leonid Afremov
Paintings digital-animation: Leo Bar

Blooming desert


After reviewing the more than 500 stills taken and crying over the unreadable memory card with more than 4 Gigs of video lost, here’s the second piece on the Arizona desert. I concentrated on showing the brief time during which the desert explodes in color. Every plant, cactus, tree and shrub blooms for a period varying from 7 to 15 days. And then goes into the process of creating its fruits and seeds to allow them to procreate and spread their species. Birds, rodents, bees, insects and wind aid the desert plants to spread their seed and pollen, while attempting to exist, live and grow in an extreme climate.

In this piece I paid special attention to show the contrast of color and nature of some very unusual flowers emanating from huge saguaro cacti and other times from puny shrubs. Every plant flaunts its own version of excitement and compete to attract the organism or element that will disseminate their species.

Split screens, animations, and paintings were included to create a multimedia sensory effect. All other credits can be found at the end of the video

When the desert blooms in May-June it's a spectacle like no other. Every plant and tree that appeared to be sleeping and shriveled, explodes in a multicolored palette as if in competition with each other. Stills and video were recorded in May-June, 2012 in the State of Arizona – Here are some of the locales: Sedona, Oak Creek Canyon, Scottsdale, Phoenix, Papago Park, Desert Botanical Gardens and Cave Creek.
Enjoy the flora (and fauna),

Leo

Writing away…


Tango Predator


When I first listened to this music, it touched me in such a way that compelled me to produce this piece. The rhythmic nature, constant variation and counterpoint of violin versus bandoneon, makes this creation by Astor (The Master) Piazzolla a great example of tango and classical fusion.

To represent the sensuality, heat and desire projected by the music, I chose to use a large amount of paintings, blended with Astor’s orchestra and real tango dancers. At times they are superimposed and counterpointing, as the music does with the instruments.

I hope you enjoy this creation, whether or not you’re a tango fan, since it’s more of a classical composition.
Leo

~Music: Escualo (Shark) by Astor Piazzolla

~Paintings: R Young; Juarez Machado; Pol Ledent; Virgil Stevens

Learning how to write :)


New York Faces 1950 – 60’s


This is one more chapter in the New York City vintage collection. It concentrates on capturing the faces and expressions of the average and not so average New Yorker. Several celebrities are caught in the act while posing for the camera. Also captured in their amazement are brand new immigrants from places around the globe.

The construction of this production started with the concept of pinning the Statue of Liberty as the centerpiece and “most recognized face” of NYC. From then on I used old films and a fair amount of Vivian Maier’s candid photographs that capture the human condition so well. Some images may be slightly distorted since they had to be reformatted to comply with the 16:9 wide format.

A look at some peculiar "faces" of New York in the 1950's decade.

This short piece contains street photographs taken by Vivian Maier, an American of French and Austro-Hungarian extraction, amateur photo-bug and nanny. The photographs were discovered in a thrift auction house on Chicago’s Northwest Side in 2007. She actually appears in one sequence, taking a self portrait against a mirror or window. Many of the scenes revolve around the Statue of Liberty, presenting very unusual angles and takes. There are also famous celebrities faces caught as they were doing "their thing".
Enjoy the ride,
Leo

Music: Cool – Dave Grusin Band
Leonard Bernstein, composer. Dave Grusin, arranger.
http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/dave-grusin-presents-west/id17768891
Photographs: Vivian Maier, Leo Bar
Paintings – Poster: Gil Elvgren
Vintage Film: New York Public Library, Library of Congress, Archive.org (all in the public domain)

A 1960s menu from a Chinatown restaurant


Ahh delicious… And so affordable.

Ephemeral New York

A buck bought you a lot of food at the Rice Bowl, a Cantonese place at 44 Mott Street: “in the heart of Chinatown,” as the massive menu points out.

Open from 1939 to 1970, it was a “sophisticated high-class restaurant that required gentlemen to dress in suit and tie,” writes Daniel Ostrow and Mary Sham, authors of Manhattan’s Chinatown.

The Rice Bowl had quite an assortment of chow mein, the Americanized noodle dish topped with soupy vegetables that epitomized Chinese food decades ago.

It’s tough to find a bowl of chow mein in the city today, amid all the trendy Asian fusion spots. Even the last chow mein neon sign is gone.

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