Saturday, June 6, 2009

Day 6 aka Saturday

Hello everybody, today was our sixth full day in Paris. We started off the morning doing creativity exercises where we got together with a partner, and wrote letters to people while alternating words (they write one word, I write a word, and so on and so forth). There were some really good letters. Here's one from me and Mark:

"My dearest sweety,

My heart and soul are in the sweetest part of your hair. So I must know how you brush your hair and floss your eyebrows. Just remind yourself that every cantaloupe resides beside the farthest location of the closest jungle? I really have one more thing to say and you are going to love refrigerators!

With sentiments,
Your hotdog"

I laughed so hard that I almost died. Afterwards, we did some group exercises where we had to get into a single file line in order of height and shoe size with our eyes closed. We looked like idiots. Many eyes were poked out and a few more people died, but it was a really fun experience.

John threw us a curveball with our sketching for today. We played a game called "Hot potato" sketch spread. We all traded our sketchbooks with other people and let them draw on a single spread whatever they wanted all day. Other people could walk up and take another person's book at anytime, along with any art supplies they wanted to use. Everyone ended up with some really cool spreads...and all of them ended up resembling graffitti one way or another. It's funny how easy it is to loosen up drawing when it's not in your own book.

After leaving the dorms, we went to the Picasso Museum and the Museum Quai Branley, which was featuring exhibits of primitive art. Picasso's not really my guy, but it was interesting to see his stuff in person. It amazes me how many pieces he actually produced. It shows me that I need to get on the ball and start cranking some work out....seriously.

The Museum Quai Branley was interesting because you could really see the influence that a lot of the abariginal art had on Picasso. Some of the masks and statues looked like they could have been cut and pasted right into a Picasso painting. Cool stuff. The masks will haunt my dreams tonight. Posted are a few pics from today: My hot potato spread and pics from the Museum Quai Branley (None from the Picasso Museum...them and their R-U-L-E-S!). Enjoy!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Day 5 report

Day 5's museum, the Musee d'Orsay, was simply amazing. Every piece of artwork is so interesting and inspiring. I feel that the pieces are historical as well. Although the Louvre has some impressive pieces, they seem to focus more on antiquity and historic pieces instead of good pieces. I can apprciate the anitiquity of the pieces, but honestly, some of the art is really displeasing to look at.

We were able to split up earlier than usual on Day 5. We all went our separate ways as groups, and I ended up at a cafe near the Senelier art store with Nikita and Mark. We saw a guy playing the acordian, and he looked really depressed. Lunch was tasty and affordable. But I always wish that things were cheaper.

Living here is so expensive, and the variety of tempting merchandise doesn't help either.

Day 5

This trip is getting better and better every day. Today we went to the Musee d'Orsay, and I felt chills in almost every room I walked into. What was best was seeing the Impressionist paintings on the 5th floor, with artists like Degas, Monet, Van Gogh, who blew my mind away. Seeing those paintings up close really opened my eyes to Impressionism. Before, I did not see why that style was so popular. But the variety of colors in the bold brush strokes and the capturing of light was done by the work of geniuses! Viewing the paintings from life allowed me a chance to see the artist's thought process, because the layers of paint are more clear. Now, I truely understand why we study them. Fortunately, unlike the massive Louvre, I was able to see the whole museum in one day, and because of that I knew I was looking at the best of the best pieces.

Other than the going to d'Orsay, some of the classmates and I sat on the steps outside and had fun feeding the birds and watching then eat bread out of Chris and Kim A's hands. Then we walked down to the famous art store, Sennelier, where the group gawked over all the supplies, especially the pens. It was a tiny store with a narrow staircase leading up to the second and third level. I bought some color pencils and even got a student discount! Afterward, a few of us walked around hunting for a spot to paint, and finally found a corner bar next to a flower shop and set up our water color stations.

It was a very relaxing day, that unfortunately had to end early because as soon as I layed down to rest my feet, I fell asleep for 3 hours. John really works us hard, and keeps us moving ALL DAY(except today). I am sore in places of my body I forgot I had, but it is the most satisfying pain I have ever felt.

one more post for Day 4 by Taiwan

I found a good photo in my camera!!
15 people, one target.


Stealth Photos: Days 2 and 3 at the Louvre and Musee d'Orsay

I've posted a few of my favorite images from these first few days, such as this one of Ms. Sarah Cade (looking happy despite her sore feet) walking through the Louvre.

You can see a small selection of the first few days at:

I have been taking photos surreptiously, and my new pocket-sized camera allows me to stay somewhat discreet--which explains the candid nature of many of the photos. Halfway through the day today, Corwin showed me how to turn off the audible "shutter" sound effect, greatly increasing the photographic "stealth factor."

. . . his fellow students are now ready to kill him.

More to come soon,

John Clapp

Day 4 by Taiwan

This is a little part of Paris. Enjoy it, everyone~~


Thursday, June 4, 2009

Day 4

Hello All-
My feet hurt so baddly. We did the scavenger hunt yesterday and then walked around paris until late in the evening. Then this morning we went to the Louve. We spent about 6 hours and only saw a small fraction of the art. Luckily, the passes are good for a few days so we can go back. Of course I already have a decent sized list of things I want to go do, and its only the 3rd day.
Then John took us to visit Gobelins, the French animation school where John will be teaching next spring. It was amazing, but intimidating. We watched some shorts and the students showed us some of their work. They have great facilities, many labs, and a little screening room with cushy red chairs. I'm so jelouse. It's almost midnight and I'm gunna try to get up at 6 tomorrow. I think it's time to go pass out;
Day 4

Forget Day 3, it is already a blur in my mind. I just remember being upset with silverware and eating ice cream. Speaking of which, in Paris, when you order a medium sized cone of Gelato, the server will literally sculpt it into a freaking ROSE. I was expecting a scoop, not some amazing piece of art. Hell, I'm not upset with it, but rather impressed in a insulted way. To say, wow France is just THAT cool, the hell with scoops, they just aren't good enough. I really did wish I had a picture to put up of the Gelato to show it in all its glory. We're definetly going to go back, so I'll make sure to get a picture then.

Right now, its late as hell, AGAIN. Why? Because I'll never get use to the longitude of this place. We're walking to the school off of the metro looking up. The sun is still relatively out, roughly similar to it being 7pm in the summer. I ask, hey what time is it? My answer is nine freaking thirty at night. All the cafes are closed and the grocery store closes in half an hour. Still, its actually kind of nice having the sun out that much longer. You just feel like you get more out of a day, but your dead tired by the end of it all.

I really enjoy how grocery stores is something you go to at the end of the day to buy some food for dinner or for breakfast the next day. Its something I've never done in the states. I've always went to grocery stores and stocked up on food I'd eat over the week or month even. Here, cafes are like 7-11s, everywhere, except of course, the food and drinks are one thousand times better. For the most part, depends on your reason to go to 7-11.

I've only been here for four days and in under 3 days managed to learn how to succesfully navigate the city on my own confidently without any worry on where I am going. John really branded the navigation of the city into our brains and this handy travel book helps out as well. I feel like after the end of this trip I could probably go to most places and blend in quickly so I am not just another tourist guy. The one thing that I just can't get use to is actually the language. I know phrases and what not, and even can understand a few things, but when I actually have to speak in some way I either lock up completely or answer them in Spanish. I have NO idea why Spanish flys out of my mouth. I don't even speak it that well. For example, today a woman was trying to ask me to help her reach a can on a shelf in the grocery store. What I wanted to say is "I don't speak french." "Do you speak English?" However, what came out of my mouth was: "I would like to no french." She gave me a confused look and realized I was American and just gesture that she couldn't reach the cans. My deadbeat brain finally got those gears moving and I realized what was going on. After helping her out, I proceded to accepting her thanks by saying "Thank you" myself instead of "Your welcome" in French. I pretty much failed hardcore, but it was funny now that I think about it.

I think my roommate is itching to use his computer so I'll end it with that. More to come and next post I hope to have some pictures of things. We've just been getting back to the dorms really late in the past 4 days so its been tough to keep things rolling.


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Day 1.

Day 2.

Day 1 was so hectic and insane that I didn't even realize how tired I was until I laid down on my dorm room bed for 5 minutes and nearly immediately fell asleep. After Jon finally let us go from exploring Paris for the entire day, that is, after a 12 hour flight, Jet lag never even came to mind. I was so delusional and filled with information that going to bed at 8pm just seemed like perfectly normal and my body had no objections what so ever.

I wish I had some pictures to upload, but I'm not one of the photographers of the group. You'll have to wait for their posts. Its now 7:50 am of our second day in Paris and I need to go eat a sandwich before we begin the scavenger hunt. Sounds like we should know Paris by the time this is over.

More to post when I get the chance.