#146 Prose & Poetry

 
146 Prose & Poetry
#146 Prose & Poetry
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#146 Prose & Poetry — inspired by an ampersand fan

I just fin­ished one of my very favorite Amper­Art pieces ever, thanks to the inspi­ra­tion of a tal­ent­ed poet & fel­low amper­sand fan. Sev­er­al years ago Saman­thi Fer­nan­do, a sub­scriber, left a spe­cial com­ment on an Amper­Art post. That led to my dis­cov­ery of her poet­ic min­istry of hope & heal­ing — & the per­fect poem for an Amper­Art piece, as it con­tained an amper­sand! More about that piece below. 

A novel set in poetry

& the leg­end lives on — in the poet­’s love song.

Most nov­els are writ­ten in prose. But one par­tic­u­lar writer sur­pris­es & delights. I am pleased to announce that Saman­thi Fer­nan­do recent­ly com­plet­ed her first nov­el — com­posed entire­ly in poet­ry. As she says, “I wrote the romance I dreamed of writ­ing when I was a kid.”

Saman­thi invites you to take a jour­ney through nature with rhyme & romance.
A gar­land for love.
A roman­tic epic.
A mov­ing love song.
Saman­thi Fernando’s ninth poet­ry book, her sixth themed in nature, & final­ly after many years…the one romance she dreamed of writ­ing as a kid.

Silver Lotus Song: Romance in Nature

Silver Lotus Song by Samanthi Fernando

Sil­ver lotus
we meet again
in flow between
real­i­ty and dream

Sym­bol of love
pas­sion and pain
your seed gave life
to this song of mine

This book is a set of lyri­cal poems arranged with the aura of a roman­tic epic.

You can sample & purchase Silver Lotus Song on ama​zon​.com

 

Love & Be Loved

Back when I first dis­cov­ered her poet­ry, Saman­thi Fer­nan­do had writ­ten a poem which con­tained an amper­sand, so of course I asked to fea­ture it as an Amper­Art piece. #79 Love & Be Loved was issued for Valen­tine’s Day 2015.

Just like this issue’s #146 Prose & Poet­ry, it too is one of my favorite pieces. Saman­thi even con­tributed to the design, as she intro­duced me to the col­or rose gold.

 
Love & Be Loved
 
 

Feel the warmth & uplift­ing spir­it of Saman­thi Fer­nan­do’s lyri­cal poet­ry on her blog. Just like her writ­ing, Saman­thi’s visu­al com­po­si­tion is stun­ning — the pho­tog­ra­phy com­ple­ment­ing each poem is hers as well.

 

Read poetry of hope & healing by Samanthi Fernando here.


Prose & Poetry & Verse

For those of you who write prose & poet­ry, or sim­ply enjoy read­ing it, here is a great web­site: poet​ry​foun​da​tion​.org. Of par­tic­u­lar inter­est is an arti­cle “Is It Poet­ry or Is It Verse?


Concept & Design

The illus­tra­tion for Amper­Art #146 Prose & Poet­ry is a repro­duc­tion of a chap book from the nine­teenth cen­tu­ry. This is the orig­i­nal repro­duc­tion:

19th century chap book

A cou­ple ele­ments were mod­i­fied for this piece:

font: GermanicaThe orig­i­nal title “The Chap Book” was replaced by a custom-​designed mast­head “Prose & Poet­ry” fea­tur­ing a type­style that I felt was reflec­tive of the peri­od, Antique No. 14.

I like to give a spe­cial treat­ment to our friend the amper­sand when­ev­er fea­si­ble, so here I took the orig­i­nal form of the amper­sand set in Ger­man­i­ca, shown at left, & extend­ed the flat top & bot­tom ele­ments into long hor­i­zon­tal rules.

Note that there is anoth­er amper­sand in the low­er para­graph in the orig­i­nal illus­tra­tion, form­ing the con­trac­tion “&c.” In the past, this was a com­mon way of abbre­vi­at­ing the term “et cetera.” It is sel­dom used today (but one of us still uses it fre­quent­ly).

On the oth­er hand, anoth­er type of con­trac­tion is nev­er used any­more. That con­trac­tion is “annex’d,” seen in the same para­graph, where the apos­tro­phe sub­sti­tutes for a miss­ing let­ter; it used to be applied to any num­ber of words in a doc­u­ment, cor­rect­ly or not. There is the excep­tion to this type of con­trac­tion falling out of style, as we see every­day in ubiq­ui­tous con­trac­tions such as “don’t” & “can’t” & “del’d”…&c.

original artThe oth­er change to the orig­i­nal illus­tra­tion is where you see a chap book with­in the chap book illus­tra­tion, held by the dude read­ing to his hot date. There was a human char­ac­ter on the cov­er of the lit­tle book in his hand. This was replaced by a more inter­est­ing char­ac­ter: an amper­sand, of course.

 

The orig­i­nal illus­tra­tion showed the tex­ture of the sub­strate it was print­ed on. I sam­pled the tex­ture & applied it to my new art­work. Then a pho­to of old paper, suit­able in the shape of a chap book, was placed behind the cov­er art. I guess you could say I turned the chap book into a chaz book.


Ampersand Land

by Chaz the Poet

There once was a com­po­si­tion of land
Where each neigh­bor was an amper­sand

Mr. Gara­mond & the Bodo­nis & Miss Hel­veti­ca Neue
Fritz Quadra­ta & Arnold Bock­lin & even Com­ic Sans too

Every type of char­ac­ter was styl­ish­ly grand!

This is my attempt at a lim­er­ick. How­ev­er, “The Struc­ture of a Lim­er­ick” states:

Lim­er­icks are short poems of five lines hav­ing rhyme struc­ture AABBA. It is offi­cial­ly described as a form of ‘anapes­tic trime­ter’.

The ‘anapest’ is a foot of poet­ic verse con­sist­ing of three syl­la­bles, the third longer (or accen­tu­at­ed to a greater degree) than the first two: da-​da-​DA. The word ‘anapest’ shows its own met­ric: anaPEST.

Lines 1, 2 & 5 of a lim­er­ick should ide­al­ly con­sist of three anapests each, con­clud­ing with an iden­ti­cal or sim­i­lar phoneme to cre­ate the rhyme.

Lines 3 & 4 are short­er, con­struct­ed of two anapests each & again rhyming with each oth­er with the over­all rhyme struc­ture of AABBA.

That is all too con­fus­ing for me, so I’ll just let my lit­tle rhyme be & con­cede:

I’m not a poet
But I don’t know it


 Please comment here.


chaz sez

Want more?
Rants & raves most­ly about design, some­times about the uni­verse.

An occa­sion­al bit of use­ful advice.
des​i​monedesign​.com/​c​h​a​z​-​sez


Production notes for #146 Prose & Poetry:
Original size: 20x30 inches

Program: Adobe Photoshop
Fonts: Antique No. 14, Germanica, Attic (all modified)

Ampersands: Germanica (title), Attic (illustration) (both modified)
Credits:
Chap book cover: Will H. Bradley, 19th century; deposit​pho​tos​.com; vector by Morphart
Paper background: deposit​pho​tos​.com
Note: &” replaces “and” in most or all text, including quotations, headlines & titles.
You may repost the image & article. Please credit Amper​Art​.com.
To download a full-​size high-​resolution 11x17-​inch poster, click on the image.

For pro­fes­sion­al graph­ic design, you absolute­ly, pos­i­tive­ly* must vis­it Des­i­mone Design.

Desimone? Damn good!

*Thanks, FedEx.

#149 Every Now & Then

 
149 Every Now & Then
#149 Every Now & Then
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This is a high-​resolution pdf & may take a few minutes to download.
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You know how the phrase ends…

Every now & then the sun breaks through the clouds.

Every now & then you get a lucky break.

Or just…

Every now & then some­thing sim­ply breaks.

All of the above occurred dur­ing the month of May.

My com­put­er kept shut­ting down every now & then for appar­ent­ly no rea­son. The lucky break is that my broth­er Rob, a com­put­er genius, fig­ured it was sim­ply over­heat­ing. He talked me through the repair & it’s run­ning nice & cool again.

As for the weather…it was all over the place in Los Ange­les dur­ing May. Sun, rain, hot, cold. Memo­r­i­al Day week­end was espe­cial­ly unusu­al. Nor­mal­ly sun­ny all three days, Sat­ur­day was hot & clear but the very next day it was cold & rainy. On Mon­day, Memo­r­i­al Day itself, every now & then the sun broke through the clouds.

Every now & then I hope an amper­sand puts a smile on your face.


Concept & Design

Quite sim­ple. The com­put­er crashed & I explod­ed.


 Please comment here.


Production notes for #149 Every Now & Then:
Original size: 20x30 inches

Program: Adobe Illustrator
Fonts: Professor Minty (modified), Variex OT Light, Freestyle Script

Ampersand: Professor Minty (modified)
Note:
&” replaces “and” in all text, including quotations, headlines & titles.
You may repost the image & article. Please credit Amper​Art​.com.
To download a full-​size high-​resolution 11x17-​inch poster, click on the image.

For pro­fes­sion­al graph­ic design, please vis­it Des­i­mone Design.

Desimone? Damn good!

#84 Love & Devotion

 

84 Love & Devotion

 #84 Love & Devotion
Click image to view full size or download poster for gallery-​quality printing & framing.
This is a high-​resolution pdf & may take a few minutes to download.
Find printing tips & framing ideas here.

Leona L. DeSimone
May 26, 2016 — February 13, 2001

LEONA L. DE SIMONE
Beloved Wife, Mother and Grandmother
1916 – 2001

This piece was orig­i­nal­ly pub­lished in Feb­ru­ary 2017 for the anniver­sary of the pass­ing of my moth­er on Feb­ru­ary 13, 2001. It’s the per­fect piece to send again for Moth­er’s Day, for I’m proud to intro­duce you to this incred­i­ble woman who brought up four young kids on her own after our father’s ear­ly death. She was always smil­ing (except when I heard her secret­ly cry­ing as she count­ed pen­nies to feed her chil­dren). Hap­py Moth­er’s Day to every­one, for you are either a moth­er or you’ve had one.


—Feb­ru­ary 2017—

Before I release Amper­Art #100 with a big cel­e­bra­tion lat­er this year, I want­ed to include in the first 100, two specially-​numbered pieces of my art­work to hon­or my mom and dad, from whom I inher­it­ed my tal­ent:
My father, to whom I will pay trib­ute with Amper­Art #62, died at 62 years old on March 29, 1962. It will be released in March.
My moth­er, to whom I pay trib­ute with Amper­Art #84 (she died at 84 years old on Feb­ru­ary 13, 2001), which is the Amper­Art I release today.

We had huge hydrangea bush­es in our front yard, and I always asso­ciate those flow­ers with my mom. They are soft and pas­tel (ours were a mix of pink, blue, white and pur­ple), and big and round and cush­iony look­ing. I was very pleased to find this beau­ti­ful art­work which depict­ed the exact col­ors of Mom’s hydrangeas.

I always called them big bul­bous old-​lady flow­ers; today I dis­cov­ered the prop­er term (thanks to my friend JoAnn — I thought they were aza­leas). As for “old lady,” we kids were for­tu­nate our moth­er lived to a won­der­ful 84 years old, in pret­ty good health, too, all the way up until almost the very end. For the last sev­er­al weeks we took turns stay­ing with her and nurs­ing her. One thing I will always cher­ish is the hon­or, although it was very embar­rass­ing to my mom, to change her dia­pers, for that is what she did for me a long, long time ago.

Mom’s favorite col­or was deep cobalt-​navy-​indigo blue, so I chose that as the back­ground to this piece of art. The type­style is soft and friend­ly, but also a time­less face which express­es solid­i­ty and integri­ty. That’s what my mom was — nur­tur­ing, always smil­ing, but stern enough to bring her kids up as decent human beings. Well, most of us; I’m the eccen­tric black sheep. In fact I actu­al­ly hat­ed my moth­er because she would­n’t allow Dad­dy to spoil me all the time. After our dad died when I was 10 and my broth­ers and sis­ter were even younger, it did­n’t take long for me to real­ize who was real­ly keep­ing the fam­i­ly in line. I loved my dad dear­ly, but when I real­ized that his gen­er­ous and spoil­ing nature was tamed by my down-​to-​earth mom, I gained a true respect and admi­ra­tion for her. A dif­fer­ent kind of love, one that is based on sen­si­bil­i­ty, love and devo­tion to her chil­dren.

The peach col­or in the let­ter­ing is the col­or of ros­es we, specif­i­cal­ly my sis­ter Roslyn, chose for her funer­al. We expect­ed per­haps 50 – 75 peo­ple, and over 200 showed up to pay their respects. Our moth­er touched so many peo­ple with her smile and kind­ness, peo­ple we nev­er even knew, that it blew us away. How proud I felt for hav­ing such as spe­cial per­son as a moth­er that spread so much joy to strangers (well, strangers to her kids).

Mom always sang a lul­la­by to us that is still one of my favorite melodies. We had it played on the organ at her funer­al. All Through the Night (the Welsh lul­la­by, not the Cin­di Lau­per hit)You can lis­ten to it here, sung by Per­ry Como and the Ray Charles Singers in a TV broad­cast from 1958, just around the era Mom would be singing it to all us chil­dren. Appar­ent­ly it struck some­thing deep in Per­ry Como too, as you’ll notice he was­n’t able to fin­ish the song.

My broth­er Rob took that spec­tac­u­lar pho­to of her grave­stone. The reflec­tion of the tree and branch­es are mean­ing­ful. They’re like the strength and endurance that mom always had to with­stand some tough times, mak­ing sure we kids grew up in a nur­tur­ing and lov­ing home.

You left us one day before Valen­tine’s Day, so it’s fit­ting that I sim­ply say Mom, I love you. 


chaz sez ...

Check out the new “chaz sez” blog at Des​i​moneDesign​.com, my com­mer­cial graph­ic design web­site. It’s most­ly about design, typog­ra­phy, print­ing, pub­lish­ing & mar­ket­ing, but on occa­sion I’ll divert to a side­ways top­ic that just can’t escape my rant­i­ng & rav­ing.


Production notes for #84 Love & Devotion:
Original size: 20x30 inches

Program: Adobe Illustrator
Font: Goudy Oldstyle
Ampersand: Goudy Oldstyle
Credits:
Hydrangeas: deposit​pho​to​.com
Mom’s gravestone: Robert DeSimone
All Through the Night: The Perry Como Show /​ YouTube
You may repost the image. Please credit Amper​Art​.com.
To download a full-​size high-​resolution 11x17-​inch poster, click on the image.

For pro­fes­sion­al graph­ic design, please vis­it Des­i­mone Design.

Desimone? Damn good!