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A Mixed Bag of British

February 22, 2017 12:27pm Published by Jules Smith in The Art Philosopher 23 Comments

Satirical Snapshots Bringing You Whimsy On A Wednesday

Four weeks late, dreadfully tardy and woefully lacking in whimsical tales. WELL I WAS BUSY. I thought about you all but I had lots of things to do. It’s very difficult being a superhero come spy come entrepreneur and sometimes I have to sacrifice my whimsy to save the world. You’re welcome.

Mixed Media

Today I bring you a fuddle of delight from the past few weeks. Things that have caught my attention as I stand back and take a hard look at the world around me.

Go green

I went to the village pub to find the Christmas tree still up. I found Cockney Al and had a word.

“Hey, Al, you know it’s bad luck to still have your tree up, right?”
“Jules my little anthrax truffle. See, that ‘aint a Christmas tree, it’s a Valentines tree. And after that it becomes an Easter tree. See where I’m comin’ from petal?”
I have to admit I liked his style. Waste not. However, I think Al will concede to my superstitious point since after that conversation I won twice at ‘Sticky 13’s’ and walked off with fifty, glorious pounds. Nice.

The American Prophecy

I saw it with my own eyes. There, carved in Mansfield stone amongst many other grotesques, green men and gargoyles, a recognisable face standing proud in one of the arches of my favourite 14th century cathedral. A simple stonemason predicted the future some 700 years ago; blinded by the truth and light that shone down through the church spires, he was compelled to reveal the figure that would change the modern world through his simple craft. Oh yes. The truth is stranger than fiction, my friends. See for yourself.

President Donald Trump.

London Calling To The Faraway Towns

I took a little trip to the capital. You can never tire of London. Here’s what I found amusing on my junket.

Telephone boxes are now being used as advertising kiosks for dominatrix girls looking for sex slaves and offering lessons in sissy training. Pffft… pass me a whip… Some of these boxes even host defibrillators. I’m wondering if there’s a connection.

Make your own quilted jacket and avoid designer “rip -off” prices. Smart. London swag.

Or not… Instead become the notorious Vaporiser.

Amusing stickers pasted on windows from Brexiters.

And…the pub never lies. The truth will always out from drunken mouths.

Can someone please explain this to me?

Can I only park here if I’m a disabled tennis player?

 

The Art Philosopher poses a question.

Despite my skill and authority as the worlds leading Art Philosopher, I found myself befuddled by the following sculptures:

What is this thing? What is it supposed to be saying? It’s a giant orange pretzel turd and I don’t get it. Maybe it’s a misshaped fruit loop that appeals to fruit loops.

But then there’s this. Sat in the foyer of a four star hotel. I analysed it for a while, trying to find its meaning.

Conclusion: We are caged in a world of shit. Think on.

33 ~ Jules Smith

September 22, 2016 11:54am Published by Jules Smith in The Art Philosopher 35 Comments

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Jules Smith ~ 33 ~ brings you a collection of thirty -three, flash fiction stories offering a snapshot in time and delving into the many layers of human behaviour. Each tale exposing the rich tapestry of emotion that we all prefer to hide behind closed doors.

There’s nothing quite as interesting as human behaviour. People are all about their public presentation and how well they are perceived to the outside word. But me, well I like to tear through those veils and pull out all the real human emotions and flaws that stay locked within.

Those of you who know me well or have followed this blog for sometime, are aware that I have an odd penchant for photographing doors from around the world. I don’t know why, but I find doors fascinating; particularly really old, weathered doors that have stood strong against the years and been passed through by many.

Some doors stay barricaded; some are always open; some hang on their hinges bearing the tattered scars of life. Doors have stories and so do people.

My new book ~ 33 ~ brings you a collection of thought provoking short stories: sometimes dark, truculent or moving and at other times, cynically humorous. I guarantee there will be a story in here that resonates with you.

33 is a book that is suitable for ages from 20-100 and any gender which means I have thoughtfully got your Christmas presents for everyone all wrapped up. They’ll even gift wrap and post it from Amazon leaving you with spare time to enjoy the festivities whilst everyone else trudges the streets with carrier bags slicing into their fingers. You’re welcome.

So,

If you love me, you’ll buy my book.

If you like me, you’ll buy my book.

If you don’t like me, why are you here? GET OFF MY PAGE! Go to another page – preferably Amazon and buy my book ~ 33.

Good karma comes to those who buy – Bad JuJu comes to those who don’t…

Available now as a paperback or on Kindle from Amazon platforms around the globe.

BUY: HERE FOR UK  BUY: HERE FOR USA

READ MY BOOK BOOK PITCH / INTERVIEW HERE

Awkward Annie

September 15, 2016 4:55pm Published by Jules Smith in The Art Philosopher 19 Comments

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Oh, well hello, and fancy seeing you here, big smile, winky face, you need to pull up a chair, dear.
And please, ignore my common mask all painted up and pretty, that’s just to keep you feeling safe, to make you think I’m normal, cos underneath the usual is really rather gritty. The joker smiles and don’t you know, that on the whole, I find it kind of funny – oh there’s a pun! Why thank you, hun, yeah this one’s on the money. No matter if you’re close enough or even really far, I‘ll assess you like a buyer might a classy, pricey car. I’m noting those reflections and the way the alloys spin, and I’ll enjoy the show, cos that’s all it is, charades, charades in buckets and spades, but honestly I’m more intrigued with what’s going on within. So take a pew, just me and you and shoot some whisky with the breeze, keep up your easy, playful style and I’ll pretend so effortlessly, that I can’t see the wood for all the monkey trees. Are you sure…really sure? Well hello, Jackdaw! Tell the barkeep to line me up another full score. Keep it coming, don’t be wary it’s a game of give and give and a dozen Hail Mary’s; a social kind of interactive tennis match of fake, but darling let me tell you that will be your first mistake. Are you strong? Courageous? I implore that you are; like a dirty, jacked – up pick-up truck complete with steel bull-bar. Cheers! Clink glasses, to health and to happy; mundane, mundane and years all the same- I’m bored with all that, care to show me your pain? Let me see you, tell me do, it’s safe in this harbour, OOPS! Did I just spot a chink in your armour or is that amour; let me push this some more. Well, you opened up a crack in the the great guarded door! Good lord, pardon me, did that make you sore, when I poked at your fleshy parts with my double edged sword? But I’m certain I saw it, that glowing red button, and should I press it will I get an almighty explosion, ejection or ejacul….WHAT? You really think I push boundaries without hesitation? And all of a sudden I have your attention. Let’s quickstep this through and I’ll spin you anew, the perfect, whirling, deflective dancer for if you ask me a question you won’t like the answer and I can’t have that and you letting me down, so down, I can feel the frowning despair and I might need to call my emergency clown. I might feel inclined, so very in fact, if that’s how I’m going to get into your mind. Cagey and cryptic, that’s what you spin, but I just took your bishop whilst you played at mystic and now we’re this far, this far but still left in the dark till the night becomes morning but I tend to get restless so don’t leave me yawning; monotonous time and its usual ticking and ticking and twirling my locks when I’d much rather be jumping adventurous tocks and taking my angle from outside the box. Chin chin! to another, has it made you feel dizzy? And whilst you were busy running the gauntlet, I don’t want to flaunt it, but you should have thought or you should have said, oh dear, well here’s to the death of it, ’Off with his head!’ But sure, I’m just playing, here look at my smile, it’s always best kept in a jester style status so that this situation stays inviolatus.
Awkward Annie they call me, but what’s in a name? And my black and white board’s always set for the game.

The Art Philosopher

August 4, 2016 2:00pm Published by Jules Smith in The Art Philosopher 20 Comments

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Some of you may know that I wryly refer to myself as the “Art Philosopher” on this here web page.

Firstly because I don’t see why I shouldn’t grace myself with a title that feeds my closet narcissist ( I use the word closet with a smidgen of irony) and secondly because my in depth analysis of the visual results in an accompanying story based sometimes in reality but often times from the wilderness of my imagination.

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Perhaps I am meant to be a see and tell person.

Maybe I am gifted in the fact that I am able to recognise something unusual or fascinating in the everyday banal such as doors or manhole covers and even shadows and shapes that play across a structure. Maybe I have an ability to see the story that lies behind the furrowed brow of a man sitting alone in the park or behind the mask of a painted face and a fake smile. Maybe I can see beyond the obvious and have an ability to find the truth in obscure detail.

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Or maybe not.

Maybe I am just one of those fortunate people that finds herself presented with fascinating imagery and I’m just lucky like that.

See, most people would go and take a bottle of beer out of the fridge and that would be just it: a simple act of taking out a fizzy container of liquid – no more, no less.

But not me.

Oh no.

I get pictures….

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Read into that what you will.

A Modern Day Fairytale…

July 4, 2016 7:08pm Published by Jules Smith in The Art Philosopher 35 Comments

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My Mother has insisted that I write a happy story.

 
I’m here as narrator, to tell you a beautiful, modern day tale. Well, the beginning of one. I can continue if my audience wishes this to be a novella….

Once upon a time (because twice makes it repetitive and thrice leaves us yawning) in a land somewhere lodged between our imagination and our delusions, there lived a beautiful, young girl. Of course, our heroines are always beautiful and never disfigured or hit with the ugly stick. She had long, golden hair, rich in depth with hints of caramel courtesy of L’OREAL 7.3 and the cappuccino wash her hairdresser weaved in. Well, if anyone was worth it, she was. Her eyes were big and round like that of a startled deer and the bluest of blues akin to a Mediterranean sky in the height of summer. Some thought it was down to the coloured contacts, luxury fibre eyelashes and her addiction to amphetamines but it wasn’t like that; she was a natural with just a soupçon of aid from the lip fillers, Botox and biannual face peels. Her figure had an hour glass seem woefully lacking with sensual curves that would make Jessica Rabbit puke with envy. Of course, Daddy had paid handsomely for her double D, pert chesticles in an attempt to save her from social anxiety and they vastly improved her Instagram following. Her waist, so slender, the high school beef cake could get both his hands around it. Of course, the torso shaping corset helped to keep her pencil thin and even though she could hardly breathe or swallow her undressed, rocket leaf salad when wearing it, her sacrifice didn’t go unnoticed. Fainting was an art form and often attracted new, chivalrous admirers and so much more attention.

Dyamontay, the name of our beautiful heroine, because naturally she had a one off, made up moniker that nobody could spell or even believe. She told everyone it was of French origin even though the only French word she knew was Paris which was the name of her biggest, female, high school competitor. However, Paris remained a size 2 despite being proficient at bulimia and could never match the perfect size zero of Dyamontay. In class or social photos, our heroine would make sure she stood next to Paris on purpose for digital proof of her superiority, and after two whole days of water dieting of course. It wasn’t long before the stress of it all got to Paris, who ended up being carted off to rehab with a serious twitch and an expensive addiction, poor thing.

However, Dyamontay had so many friends it didn’t matter. Her Facebook boasted 2472 of them and her twitter almost double that. Her popularity increased on a daily basis particularly with her in depth posts on the latest designer heels, dressed up pugs and celebrity knowledge. She read all the glossy magazines on a weekly basis, even though it tired her out dreadfully, she’d heard somewhere that reading broadened the mind, whatever that meant. Her dedication to to the important things in life clearly set her aside from her peers. Dyamontay didn’t have time for any other hobbies apart from calorie counting, the art of precision face contouring and practising her most flattering angles and poses in the mirror. Her less attractive friends tried to overcompensate with wit and intellect but they never got as many likes as she did. Boys didn’t care for that sort of thing in her opinion and she wondered why some girls worked so hard to be inappropriate rather than pretty; still, not everyone can be a princess. Boys preferred it when you flicked your hair and laughed at everything they said, even if you didn’t understand them. Most young men followed her around, catering to her feminine whims and offering their help when she found things difficult like heavy, unnecessary text books, bumpy tarmac that played havoc with her Laboutin’s and simple multiplication. Every which way she turned, a young stallion would be there to facilitate her needs and desperately try to accommodate her. All bar one, a rather naturally handsome guy who studied way too much to be normal and had a rather biting wit which completely baffled her. His name was Tom which she found dreadfully boring and chose to call him Tommy. He clearly wasn’t from money with such an unimaginative name and by the simple High Street clothes he wore. Still, it amazed her how well he could pull off a peasant style look with such confidence. He would generally ignore her if she spoke to him or provoke her with complicated questions she didn’t know how to answer. He was clearly mentally challenged and only went on to prove her theory by dating a girl with mousy hair and cankles.

Though this boys lack of sense irritated her to the point of madness, her goal was set on landing Bradley, the high school football star and beefcake, as expected. This didn’t prove a challenge in any way at all as Bradley seemed overly fascinated by the buttons on her pretty blouses every single day. Two simple dates passed by where she pretended to be interested in football and he pretended to know the colour of her eyes and by date three she found herself locked in the bedroom of a beach front mansion, at a high class party. Dyamontay found herself to be a little bit tipsy on the two bellini’s she’d imbibed but knew the level of expectation to keep her beau.

Whilst she had no experience on snake handling she’d made the time to study the art by coming across the mysterious collection of videos she’d found on her Fathers computer when she was looking for his bank balance. It must have been Daddy’s secretary that put them on there when she worked overtime at weekends when Mommy went on one of her many, ‘Ladies days’ and ‘Tennis tournaments’. She looked the sort that didn’t have breeding and her Daddy was often having to take her off in private to have a word with her. He really was far too accommodating.

The animalistic antics that she viewed had terrified her somewhat and made her feel exceptionally nauseous, putting her off the 12 vegetable, lose weight faster, smoothie she usually had as a treat but Dyamontay knew these things were important in order to snag the deal long term. She also knew that just being her meant that half the battle was already won and the situation would likely to be over rather quickly.

Bradley didn’t waste any time fumbling around with her assets which had no effect but to irritate her when he inadvertently dislodged the ultimate lift, bra tape that kept her looking glorious in her backless dress. Thankfully, getting past the high waisted, tummy tuckers would be almost impossible for him since he had fingers the size of sausages. She’d even broken a nail herself getting the darn things on and had to call for an emergency manicure. Dyamontay made it clear to Bradley that she wanted to take things slowly and one step at a time. He didn’t seem to be paying much attention to her voiced opinion and merely grunted, pretty much like the men on the videos, as he continued to work out how a halter neck undid. She removed the super strength,anti bacterial hand sanitiser from her Valentino clutch and set it to one side. The mouth wash wouldn’t be needed until she had a rock on her finger, then and only then and on very rare special occasions, like needing a soft top Bentley, would that be necessary.

Cowboy Church

May 2, 2016 6:41am Published by Jules Smith in The Art Philosopher 15 Comments

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Today I went to church. That’s right. But not just any church, oh no.

I went to Cowboy Church. Well of course I did, I’m a cowgirl so that’s where I had to go.

Now, quite honestly I didn’t know what to expect because churches where I live are standard issue steeples and peoples, pews and altars, stained glass and Sunday best, gilt edged flimsy papered bibles and purple robes  and that stuff that smells funny inside like the start of a sacrifice.

I was terribly intrigued and wondering what branch of worship I’d be letting myself in for.  I made my fairy godmother come along just incase I needed a pumpkin out on demand.

The drive out into the countryside was beautiful. I now want a ranch. Seriously. But then I saw two dead deer on the road, vultures and a broken armadillo; followed by a holocaust of bugs known as ‘Love bugs’ splatting themselves by the million onto the front of the car like tiny pebbles which made me wonder if I could cope in rural Texas. I decided, yes. So long as I avoid roads.

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We arrived at a wooden place in the middle of a field called Texas Cowboy Church.

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In we went with an air of suspicion and I was immediately greeted with a hug, more people, and more hugs. It wasn’t dissimilar to a French party except the kissing business didn’t happen. There were real cowboys there and everything who spoke to me in the most polite way like one might speak to a princess.

“Are you hungry?” they asked.

Fish and bread? I wondered. “Hungry? Is that word even in the American vocabulary? I haven’t been hungry for a month! I’ve forgotten what hungry feels like.”

“Come, have a coffee and some doughnuts” they said. Doughnuts in church? Proper!

Everybody came to chat and welcome me and seemed terribly excited about having their first English visitor. I became an instant celebrity. I thought people in Texas were nice already but this flock took nice to a whole new level. Even the pastor hugged me.

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Coupla cowboys:  Roland and Robert

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Wall of visiting fame.  Mine goes up next week.

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The service didn’t send me into narcolepsy like the ones I’ve experienced before with monotone readings and sombre messages that make me leave thinking God is going to smite me any minute now; this service was like a positivity seminar. The place rocked with country singing, audience participation and heaps of humour.

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Best joke of the day from the awesome pastor (Ex sheriff and Rodeo pastor)

I saw a homeless man on the street and as I walked past, he asked me for $5.
“Are you going to spend that $5 on drink?” I asked.
“No”, said the homeless man.”
“Well are you going to spend it on gambling?”
“Of course not,” he said.
“Well are you going to spend it on a round of golf?” I asked.
“No, I’m not.”
“I’m not going to give you $5, instead I’m going to take you back to my house and get my wife to cook you a slap up meal.”
“Well I smell real bad and I’m dirty,” said the homeless man. “Surely she won’t be happy with that.”
“She sure as hell won’t , but I want her to see how bad a man looks when he’s had to give up drink, gambling and golf!”

BOOM BOOM!

When do you ever hear that at Saint Mary’s?

Myself and England got mentioned all the way through and I’ve been invited back. I’ve never been invited back to church before. And we got asked to dinner after and they said they’d make me a cake on my return. Well that sold it!

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A whole new cowboy take on the ten Commandments.

They told me their church is the bestest and it’s not just good but gooder (new words taught to me by the pastor) and they sure as hell aren’t wrong. Best fun I’ve ever had on an early Sunday morning (except for the time I dreamt about being a Bond girl)

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As usual – I got some more T-Shirts. I am becoming the collector of the best tees that ever there was.

 

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