Jun 11, 2012

It's A Wonderful Project

This is my 100th post.

That sentence sounds a lot like self congratulatory back slapping and in a way, it is. When I started this blog I never thought it would last more than a few months and now, just over a year later and 5,000+ views a month, I feel ready for another 100 posts.

So for #100 I wanted to pick something special.

In trying to figure out what this post should be about, I created a mosaic image of some previous posts, to see what I had done in the last year. I used Flipcard, which allows you to view any site powered by Blogger in one of five different ways: Flipcard, Mosaic, Sidebar, Snapshot, or Timeslide. Click Here to test it out on Patent Pending Projects. You can see what other blogs look like too, all you have to do is go to the address bar and replace the "patentpendingprojects.blogspot.ie" with another URL.

Image: Patent Pending Projects

This image got me thinking about when I was a teenager and I'd covered my bedroom wall, as so many of us did, with images of singers and movie stars, film posters and art work. I'd rip pages from magazines and arrange them into a massive collage on the wall. Spending hours piecing them together like a giant jigsaw and in doing so, subconsciously try to paint a picture of who I was.

As adults, we have a tendency to do the same thing. What we choose to put up on our walls says a awful lot about who we are. Some choose to fill a wall full of family photos while some choose carefully selected prints and posters that inspire and excite. Others just simply pick a cheap piece of abstract art because it blends well with the sofa.

It's beginning to feel like this post should be about wall art but I'm not here to tell you what to put on your own wall. That's up to you to decide but I can offer a few suggestions.

You can find all of these ideas below and many more like them here and here.

Image: Patent Pending Projects
Of course, I'd be a fool to not try and shamelessly plug my own work, which can be found in my shop here or through my facebook page.

So what does the art on my wall say about me, or us as a family?

Amongst our walls dedicated to family photos and vintage posters there sits a framed original vinyl copy of 'The Jungle Book' soundtrack, a knowing present from my sister and which now hangs in my son's bedroom. This was the first film I ever saw (and loved) as a child.

Elsewhere in the house, there are four photos in a single frame, depicting different events on the morning of January 1st 2007. A very special night and a gift from a dear friend, who shared that morning with myself and a remarkable group of  friends.

In the bathroom are two framed  letters written by Norman Mailer. Sent to my wife in response to letters she wrote to him when, standing in front of his door in Provincetown Massachusetts, she could not find the courage to knock and do that one thing we all fear. Meet our heroes.

And tucked away in the corner of the room is an evolutionary series of passport photos of me, ranging from the age 15 to 30. A gift from my wife who was obviously inspired after constantly stumbling across my pile of old passport photos and knew I'd never get around to doing anything with them because, well, she knows me so well.

My favourite though, which is an old film poster I had printed onto a large canvas as a gift for my wife, which greets us each morning as we descend the stairs. Ready to face another day of ups and downs, triumphs and failures, love and tears. Reminding us of why this is all worthwhile. We live in a world where we are constantly being sold the idea that fantasy is better than reality. In truth, fantasy is better than reality and nobody is better at selling that idea than Hollywood. This one movie though is the only one I can think of that attempts to declare the opposite as true and believe me, the irony that 'reel life' telling me 'real life' is better is not lost. 

The films main character George Bailey, just wants to shake the dust of his crummy little town from his feet and go see the World. First, Italy, then Greece, the Parthenon, the Colosseum. Then he'd come back and go to college and see what they knew. After that, he would build things. Build airfields, build skyscrapers a hundred stories high, build bridges a mile long...

...and maybe even lasso the moon.

Instead, George Bailey gives up his dreams of traveling the world and going to college and stays home to manage the Bailey Building and Loan Society after his father passes away. Throughout his life, George lives by a creed that always places human need above riches, and, as a result, his only wealth is friends and family which is expressed beautifully by his brother Harry at the end, "A toast to my big brother George: The richest man in town."

There is only one thing that all the art, film posters and family photos on our wall say about us.....

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