Artist profile: Isaac Payne

I have had 23 addresses in my life. John Ford's Westerns are my boo. In the city or the great outdoors, I've always been drawn to the idea of place. When I first saw one of Isaac Payne's collage paintings of a city block, I was surprised to feel so strongly about the architectural elements. Some buildings were well-defined; others were half-assembled to the point that I couldn't tell if they were crumbling or under construction. All seemed to me to be characters in a story, imbued with intentions and emotions as strong as any experienced by the people who might move inside and around them. 

I was able to interview Isaac for this piece in HappeningsCLT. We talked at length about his ideas of place and the presence/absence of narrative in his work. Click the picture or the link to check it out....

"The Suggested Narrative of Place: In the Studio with Isaac Payne"


size matters, story matters more

In a piece in the New Yorker a few years back, author Robert Swartwood coined the term "hint fiction" to describe stories that could be told in 25 words or less. In additional to the novels, essays, short stories and poems he writes, he also encourages others to write in this form. He's published an anthology and holds an annual hint fiction contest. I was very happy to receive an honorable mention in this year's round, judged by one of my favorite authors, Ben Percy. Excellent prize was receiving three books of hint fiction, including Swartwood's Phantom Energy that I found myself reading cover to cover all at once. Pick it up and be prepared for big stories to live comfortably in close quarters.



Heathcliff and Cathy had the moors...

...Rick and Elsa had Paris and Glen and Maggie have Terminus. Now the star-crossed couple from my 3MF story, Nick and Christine, have another place to call home -- a beautifully rendered song. Soprano Christine Brewer heard the original story on NPR and asked Composer Douglas Cuomo to transform it into a song, which they premiered on April 6 with Ms. Brewer's performance at the Morgan Library & Museum in NYC. I'm thinking my voicemail-leaving-and-deleting heroine and her long-lost love are in very good hands. 



100 word story: short and bittersweet

Trying to tell a story, or create the impression of a character, in exactly 100 words reminded me of waking from a dream too fast. Whether the dream was good or bad doesn't matter. You shut your eyes again to see if you can summon the image and get back into the dream to resolve something. You never can, because it's gone, turned to vapor, and you're left lying there wondering what the hell happened. 

I'm thrilled to have my story appear on the micro fiction site, Apologies to Scott Baio look-alikes everywhere, and the creatives who worked on the Bain de Soleil account back in the day.  


"empathy, incorporated = empathinc."

Not since Steve Martin sang the praises of a new phone book has there been such excitement! Very happy to announce the launch of the new Empathinc. website. Artist Tom Schulz and writer/educator Sheila Ennis, along with their creative band of empathinkers, have a new URL to call home. Empathinc. is a collaborative venture that explores the intersection of art, community, faith, storytelling and commerce. It's also all about the exchange of ideas. Really cool ideas. Click on the logo, then visit often....