Frank Denton - The Rogue Raven

Location: Seattle, Washington, United States

What you have here is an old guy. In education for 30 years, started teaching elementary, ended as library and media director of community college. I've enjoyed mountain climbing, sports car rallying, was pipe major of a bagpipe band, played guitar and sang during the folk revival, walking and hiking later in life. Now fairly sedentary. Enjoy reading, esp. mysteries and fantasy, but my reading is pretty eclectic. Enjoy movies, giving Netflix a workout.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Andrew Wyeth

There is lots of snow on the ground in Seattle and environs. Lots of hills here and we don't deal with snow very well. Time to hunker down with a good book. I recently acquired a book entitled Andrew Wyeth: Autobiography. The title is misleading. The book is an art book containing one hundred thirty-three of Wyeth's paintings with usually a short comment by Wyeth. Wyeth is probably most recognized for his painting, "Christina's World" and for a series of nudes of Helga. But his landscapes and portraits of people, commonplace things, and buildings around his home in Chadds Ford, PA are wonderful examples of 20th Century realism. Some of you may know that he is the son of N.C. Wyeth, the wonderful painter of illustration for many classic books. He is also the father of Jaimie Wyeth, the third generation painter in the family, equally talented.

Sometimes Wyeth's commentary tells a story in a sentence. Commenting on "Teel's Island," painted in 1954, he says: "Henry Teel had a punt, and one day he hauled it up on the bank and went to the mainland and died."

This is a wonderful book I will treasure. We saw an exhibit at the Frye Museum which featured works by all three Wyeths. And on a trip to the east we saw an exhibit of Andrew's work, including all of the Helga nudes, at the Portland Art Museum. This book was remaindered from Daedalus. Search

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Brendon Gleeson

I did go to imdb to learn more about this heavyweight actor. I mean, he is a big man. Anyway...duh!...he has played the part Alastor "Mad Eye" Moody is two Harry Potter films, Harry Potter and the Order of Phoenix and Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. He also had a role in The Tailor of Panama, from the novel by John LeCarre.

Short this time. The season gets very busy. Fifteen friends out for Chinese this evening and then back to our house for dessert.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

In Bruges

I can't recall where I read a review of this movie, but something in the review made me put it on my list. Colin Farrell and Brendon Gleeson are Irish hit-men who are sent to Bruges, Belgium to lay low for awhile. Farrell had been ordered to kill a priest and had inadvertantly killed a child with the same shot. Gleeson is pleased with the city of Bruges and enjoys seeing the sites, architecture, art, etc. Farrell is not, has no love of culture, but meets a woman working on a film crew and feels much better. Then their boss, Ralph Finnes, calls Gleeson and orders him to kill Farrell. The movie plays out in a tragic fashion after Gleeson tells Farrell to get on a train, go somewhere, and start a new life. Fiennes plays a loving family man who is heartless and ruthless in his chosen profession. The city of Bruges must be a spectacular place, or maybe we are just shown the highlights, churches, canals, public squares. I wouldn't recommend this film for everyone, but for those who can live with tragedy I found the story riveting and the acting excellent. Brendon Gleeson is a large man, reminds me of Rob Coltrane, but he acted his part with grace and style. I'd like to see him in something else. Will take a look at imdb right now.