Saturday 26 January 2008

My Trilobite Ring

A few years ago, while shopping in The Museum Company at the mall, my fiancee-at-the-time and I came across some trilobite jewellery. It was so emblematic of my tastes, I was desperate for a ring. It is an elrathia kingii inset in steel, and if you flip it over and look at the inside of the ring, the fossil's belly, still retaining ancient dirty matrix, is visible. Elrathia are known for having 13 pleurae down their bodies (little spiny lines off to each side).

Michelle bought it for me, and in some ways, it felt a little like an engagement ring to me. Now we are married, and I covet this ring. It me.

I seldom wear it now. It is 550 million years old, and it is eroding at my touch. I put it on at special occasions, or sometimes just as a treat and inner distraction. You see, I have a lot of associations and mental investments swirling in the memetic wind around this ring.

My wife gave it to me, and whenever I look at it, I think of how crazy I am about her. A flood of memories washes over me, and I begin to think of memories still to come. This fossil, with its tiny compound calcium carbonate eyes has been around 550 million years. And now it's existence is congruous with my own, and with the experiences my wife and I share.

When this little arthropod was alive, humans were an inconceivably faint glint in perhaps some pikaia's eyes. As a fossil, will it last another 550 million years? Will one day, I be a fossil next to it, unlikely as that is?

I wear it on my right hand, the hand I create my artwork with. How is that for post-modern progression: the eons-old fossil, sitting on the hand of of the primate, while he draws and paints pictures of the fossil, which the primate hopes will give him a type of longevity, of immortality through art.

This ring has inspired my art, and is the basis for my business card, for the tattoo I plan to get this spring. It will likely inspire much more. This little trilobite is not just an emblem. It once was a tiny organism, perhaps wandering away from it's hatch-mates, poking its feelers through the sand, over a rock, feeding, respiring, evading detection by predators. I am living my life, wondering at it living it's life.

All this to me speaks to what it is to be human. As I said in my first post, I can sit here and marvel at a being long dead, but not forgotten. I can understand some things about it. And I can be inspired by it.

It is steeped in so many thoughts, it gathers and concentrates them. This is what fossils and artistry, - what science and art! - can give us. Meaning wrapped-in tightly and woven together. A memetic structure, chaotic and incomplete and growing inside my brain.

Tuesday 15 January 2008

New Mythical Flying Trilobite Fossil found!

...and it's on my blog banner.
It seems to be a member of the Ogygopsidae family. Hmm. Wings appear to be mammalian. Someone call Richard Fortey, or Sam Gon III.

Tuesday 8 January 2008

Looking Ahead: Glimpses of Artwork for 2008

As promised in my last post, here are some closely cropped details and sketches of art pieces I've been working on. This will see the flickering pixels of day some time in 2008. The first one is complete, and will make a splashy debut within the week.

No links - these aren't online anywhere else yet. The images may be a little washed-out and blurry since I won't subject them to a healthy Photoshop exfoliating until they are finished gestating.

One of these will be The Flying Trilobite's new banner for 2008.

Thursday 3 January 2008

A Few Glimpses from The Flying Trilobite 2007

Click on the titles for the entry from this year, or click on the images to see the whole artwork. A few pieces from the past year, no particular order. Life As a Trilobite was my most viewed and favourited in my gallery, and Disease was the least. For my blog entry posts, the two on life drawing from September are the most popular, probably since they are the least niche of my work and the easiest to search for.

In a few days I will post some glimpses of upcoming work for 2008.
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