Dilated by Simon Abrams

A blobby Manhattan Bridge. | Fujifilm X100S | f/2.0 | 1/8s | ISO250

A blobby Manhattan Bridge. | Fujifilm X100S | f/2.0 | 1/8s | ISO250

A routine eye exam resulted in dilated pupils and blurry vision for a few hours yesterday. I'm quite proud to say I have 20/20 vision, so not being able to see clearly is always an alien sensation for me. As an excercise, I decided to shoot a few images to illustrate how it felt.

I think my biggest takeaway from this exercise was that it forced me to re-focus (bam!) on some of the basics of composition - if you can't really see your subject, you have to pull back and compose the scene based on abstract attributes, like light and dark, color, and where the blobs of light are.

Anyway, it was a fun little exericise, but I'm always glad to return to clarity.

For Sale: Plywerk Prints by Simon Abrams


Please visit my brand new print gallery on Square Market, where you can purchase prints from my Hello Brooklyn series (requires Flash).

These unique prints were made for my photo exhibit at K-Dog & Dune Buggy, coffee shop and late lamented Prospect-Lefferts Gardens institution.

The photos are printed on gorgeous bamboo panels from Plywerk, and are color-fast so they'll resist fading. They're all matte prints, except for one metallic print of the rooftops of King's County.

Hopefully you find something there that will spiff up your home or office, or that will make a nice gift for someone you care about.

iPad Art - Morgan Freeman Finger Painting by Simon Abrams

I'm genuinely surprised that there are still people who bring out the "iPads are for consuming content" trope.

On another note, this got me remembering something from my old art school days. The abstract expressionists, if I remember right, were all about boiling down a medium to the essence of that medium. The things unique to painting that make it essentially painting are paint and a canvas (and maybe a brush). They weren't keen on one medium emulating another, and as such, weren't into photorealistic painting. But here's Kyle Lambert taking it a step further, using a virtual canvas on a digital thing to emulate photography. Interesting stuff.

From the Vault by Simon Abrams

A little friendly reminiscing with my pal The Resident about some of the gems we worked on in the early days of the dotcom boom prompted me to do a little digging on some backup CD's(!) I have hanging around in my office. I didn't find the stuff we were reminiscing about, but I did find these two gems from my sketchbook.

"I'm the Juggernaut, bitch!"

This was probably drawn sometime around when I got my BFA at SCAD. Which means it was drawn on an Amiga 3000, with a mouse that resembles a brick, probably using Deluxe Paint.


I think this next image started life as just another sketch in my sketchbook, which I'm guessing I scanned and used to practice inking and coloring in Photoshop, which would date it several years after the Juggernaut sketch. The file was simply named "fatman.psd". I'd really love to know how I made that cool watercolor background in what had to be Photoshop 4 (not CS4, just 4).

Robot Joe: One of 50 Awesome Robots on Abduzeedo by Simon Abrams

Robot Joe, 2006

Wow - this made my day: I discovered (rather late, I might add) that a 3D rendering of a robot that I did back in 2006 for a Maya class at SVA was featured on abduzeedo in a collection called 50 Awesome Robots. I consider this extremely high praise, because the caliber of artists featured on the site is always top-notch, and it’s humbling to be grouped among them.

Some fun facts about Robot Joe:


  • Robot Joe originated as vague idea I had for a video game back in the ’90s. See some early sketches here and here.
  • His current incarnation — and the name “Robot Joe” — is largely inspired by my friend and co-worker Joe (who happens to love robots)
  • Robot Joe is by far my most favorited and viewed image in my Flickr stream (13K views and counting)
  • He’s been widely used across the Internets (under Creative Commons licensing) for various purposes, including as a mascot for, as a desktop image in an eMINTS classroom, and on a website for a robotics conference workshop.