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Long time, no post...

Tonight, I started to update my resume. Then I decided to not worry about that and to instead create a CV, which I've uploaded here:


In the next few months, I plan to finally overhaul my personal website. But it's now late and it's time for me to get some sleep.


- Steve

Testing mobility...

Just trying out the mobile app for LJ. Here's a photo I took at the theatre earlier...

Long time no post...

It's been awhile since I last posted something here to my blog. So, to get back in the swing of things (and considering the NHL playoffs have begun and this year will mark the last year of the current NHL divisions), I've decided to post how I'd arrange the NHL if I was in charge.

In short, there would still be two conferences with 15 teams each, but I'd move some teams from markets that aren't serving the NHL well to markets where the NHL would likely be more appreciated:

Western Conference

1. Northwest Division
1.1. Calgary Flames
1.2. Edmonton Oilers
1.3. Portland Predators *
1.4. Seattle Coyotes *
1.5. Vancouver Canucks

2. Midwest Division
2.1. Chicago Blackhawks
2.2. Colorado Avalanche
2.3. Minnesota Wild
2.4. St. Louis Blues
2.5. Winnipeg Jets

3. Southwest Division
3.1. Anaheim Ducks
3.2. Dallas Stars
3.3. LA Kings
3.4. San-Jose Sharks
3.5. Salt Lake Lightening *


Eastern Conference

1. Northeast Division
1.1. Detroit Red Wings
1.2. Buffalo Sabres
1.3. Hamilton Hurricanes *
1.4. Ottawa Senators
1.5. Toronto Maple Leafs

2. Atlantic Division
2.1. Boston Bruins
2.2. NY Islanders
2.3. Montreal Canadians
2.4. Philadelphia Flyers
2.5. Quebec Bluejackets *

3. Southeast Division
3.1. Florida Panthers
3.2. New Jersey Devils
3.3. NY Rangers
3.4. Pittsburgh Penguins
3.5. Washington Capitals

Overall, I guess given the fact that you can't just lift teams up and move them at will, the new divisions that will be in place will be okay. One thing that I do like about the new system is that every team will play every other team in the league.

New layout…

Originally published at steve lee now!. You can comment here or there.

I adopted a new layout, which I like better than the old one. It’s not a huge change, but allowed the title of my site and the search bar to appear over the main graphic that I have at the top of the page. For me, it’s more visually appealing!

long time, no post...

It's a new semester, fall. Summer has come and gone so quickly. I am alone with little to do but study my ass off. And finish cleaning my house, which I'm trying to finish this week. Which is what I said last week. But I have gotten more done, honestly!

Overall, I'm excited at the start of this new term. So far, I've managed to get my homework done for all the classes I had last week. I have to stay on top of things though. Or I'll fall behind and that won't be good.

I posted <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/steveleenow/sets/72157603853221119" target="new">photos for project one to my flickr page</a>, for my digital media course that I'm taking this term. I started the class a few years ago but withdrew - now I'm going to finish it.

I'll write more later, but soon!

From East to West (Video 1)

Originally published at steve lee now!. You can comment here or there.

This video is part of a series of simple videos which marks a slow drive thru the East Side of

Read the rest of this entry »


Originally published at steve lee now!. You can comment here or there

French literary theorist, philosopher, critic and semiotician Roland Barthes’s essay, Rhetoric of the Image, is a key text for undergradute students like me who are studying in the arts (or in my case, the fine arts). Having read the piece for three different classes now, I’ve decided to post my thoughts on the article online. As a lot of my followers know, I have used my website in the past to post my own movie reviews, creative writing pieces, photographs, and articles related to crime prevention as well as to the various controversies I helped bring to light that happened at the Kwantlen Student Association. But as I become more focussed on myself and the career I want to pursue in the fine arts, I have made the decision to focuss this site solely on my interest in fine arts, film and creative writing. Other aspects of my life that I still want to have online (maily, my old humour site as well as information regarding the past controversies at Kwantlen) will be transfered to dedicted sites of their own. This posting of my brief examination into Barthes’s essay marks my first serious post related to themes and ideas I am exploring as I work towards finishing my degree in visual arts. I hope you enjoy it!

Theorist Roland Barthes

The title of Roland Barthes’s essay, Rhetoric of the Image, lays down the groundwork for the main argument of his essay, as the word “rhetoric” refers to language that is used to persuade or influence people; and the word “image” refers to a reproduction or imitation of the form of a person or thing. As such, the “rhetoric of the image” simply refers to images used to persuade or influence people. In his essay, Barthes explores a number of important issues, including whether or not images hold meaning given that they exist as representations of something else and whether or not there are limits to the meaning an image can hold. Barthes also uses an analytical system to deconstruct an advertisement for Panzani pasta products in order to explore how images constitute a language and how an image can be read for a variety of literal and symbolic meanings as created in those images. Barthes chooses to deconstruct an advertisement because of the fact that by its very nature, an advertisement is designed to sell something through a very precise, clearly defined, constructed and understandable manner.

Barthes's examined image: an advertisement for Panzani

Panzani itself is a large scale production company that originated in Europe, making pasta products since the 1940s. Today, Panzani sells its products in more than fifty countries including Canada. When one visits the Canadian website for the company today ( http://www.giovannipanzani.ca ), they come across an advertising package that is still very much reminiscent and reflective of the messages Barthes described when he wrote Rhetoric of the Image. Specifically, Barthes argues that the linguistic message serves two functions, firstly, to act as an “anchor” and secondly, to relay information. This is apparent in the advertisement where the denoted message is based on the text in the advertisement (the caption and labels); and the connoted message based on the word “Panzani” which connotes “Italianicity.” Barthes also states that the literal message, or the denoted image (which, Barthes argues, in its purest form is not possible but people still recognize the analogic relationship between the photographic image and the real world) exists without a code (non-coded) through the placement of tomatoes, which represents tomatoes and through peppers, which represent peppers, etc. Finally, Barthes explores the symbolic message, or connoted image, which serves to strike at the heart of the article as these act together to form the “rhetoric of the image.” Specifically, this is apparent in the advertisement where the white sack signifies the return from the market; the tomatoes, onions and pepper signify freshness; while the composition and colours of the Panzani product packaging signifies Italianicity; and the entire collection of all the objects signifies a total culinary service; and the overall composition signifies the idea of a still life.

Overall, the way Barthes deconstructs the image is a useful exercise, one that an artist or other interested party could attempt to do on their own with other advertisements or images; as developing an understanding of how images can be constructed and given meaning is not only a useful tool for those making art, but it is also a useful tool for those who are criticizing or critiquing images as well as for the layman who wishes a deeper understanding of how images in society can encourage or entice him into taking some sort of action (such as buying pasta). By contrast, one wonders if the level of analysis Barthes uses to analyze advertisements be applied to artistic images or to images shot by non-professional everyday people (such photos taken by family members on vacation or during the holidays; or photos taken by people at a rock concert; etc.)? Certainly, the images created by artists may be as carefully crafted as those crafted by individuals creating images in advertising; however, there are times when artistic images are created “accidentally,” with no forethought or intention for any one particular end (or message). Nonetheless, those images would likely still end up holding meaning, even if that meaning was not originally intended, or if the meaning was stumbled upon during or after the completion of the creative process.

Furthermore, Barthes does not closely examine the question that exists in advertising in regards to the possible effect of cross-cultural connotation. While he does note that he was considering how the Panzani advertisement operated in France and noted that it wouldn’t operate in the same manner in Italy he doesn’t address how the advertisement might work in say North or South America. Of course, Barthes died in 1980, and did most of his writing in the 1950s, 60s and 70s, when the world was a lot smaller. There was no internet, more than half the world stood behind an “iron curtain,” and it was not as easy to travel around the world and share information as it is today. As such, images (and more specifically, advertisements) created during this time were likely for a western audience. Had Barthes been writing today, there is little doubt that he would have likely revised his ideas with consideration to how images appeal or read across cultural boundaries.

Finally, the essay is written in fairly dense academic language that can be difficult to get into, read and grasp. For example, at the start of the essay, Barthes argues how:

According to an ancient etymology, the word image should be linked to the root imitari. Thus we find ourselves immediately at the heart of the most important problem facing the semiology of images: can analogical representation (the “copy”) produce true systems of signs and not merely simple agglutinations of symbols?

But with dense, academic language like this, a reader may have had to work to define certain words in order to understand those words and sentences in context with the overall essay.


image problem fixed

Originally published at steve lee now!. You can comment here or there.

The problem I was having with my WordPress template that I talked about in my last post is fixed. I was having issue trying to upload my own photos to randomly be used at the top of this page. Turns out that WordPress doesn’t allow images larger than (I’m guessing 5MB). The one photo I was starting with was over 8MB, while the rest were under 5MB. So after resizing the problem photo, it uploaded, as did all the others I wanted to start with.

The photos rotating right now are from a series I did on Windows for my Photography 3 course at Kwantlen Polytechnic University. Right now, I don’t have these photos anywhere else online, but one day I suspect some of them will end up on my flickr.

I also got the summary that is due today done this morning as I had planned (although it was very tempting to sleep in!).

Off to class. Be good to each other,

- Steve

a new day begins as another ends…

Originally published at steve lee now!. You can comment here or there.

It’s really late. Well, maybe not really late. It’s 1:30am on Monday, January 31, 2012.

2012. Where do the days go?

Overall, I guess I’m feeling okay tonight. I know there is a lot to do this week and soon I’ll feel the stress of crunch time.

Of course, instead of revising, proofing and finishing (it feels good to use those words, as opposed to the word ”starting,” cause, yes, I have started them), some reading summaries for two of my classes tonight; I spent a couple of hours on my website trying to improve my WordPress layout. I’m glad that I got some things working, such as the grouping of links to different media sites I belong to (which you can find to the left of the screen) and changing the theme of my site. I’m a little upset that I couldn’t get WordPress to upload photos of my own artwork to use as the header photo but I guess I’ll leave that till another day.

So to close my work on WordPress for tonight, I’m writing this quick post to see if what I write here will also automatically post to my LiveJournal blog and then I’ll either catch some zzz’s or work on those summaries. I may just catch some zzz’s and wake up round 6:00 am to revise them.

Talk soon,

- Steve

allergies suck...

I've been sneezing now for just over an hour, pretty much non-stop. In 2008/09 I was retested for my allergies and found I was allergic to dust, dust mites and molds. At that time I was put on shots which happened weekly and now monthly. I supplement the shots still with antihistamines such as Reactine. I don't get attacks as often as I used to, but when it does it sucks.

No exercise since my bike ride, although I did a lot of walking around downtown Vancouver on Saturday taking photos of Canuck fever.

I also got a lot of painting done yesterday but have more to do today. I plan to make a post about my latest series of paintings, my inspiration for them along with some of my frustration with them sometime soon.

I did a bit of work on updating my movie list again, adding some recent additions to the list. I'd like to finish updating "L" this weekend.

Anyway, I have to run to the store, then take Jessie to work!

Chow for now,

- Steve