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Exploding Dog

There's this guy called Sam Brown who maintains a web site called Exploding Dog. This web site is filled with pictures which he drew from captions that people sent him.

I keep returning to the web site because of the amazing pictures he draws. They are incredibly simplistic, as if drawn by a four-year-old, and yet contain the most curious and odd psychologic constructs, and are oftentimes puzzling and interesting way beyond what is normal for that quality.

Two of the pictures I have fallen for are That's All He Really Wanted, and I'm So Lucky.

The first one, That's All He Really Wanted, must be some sort of play on a sick, twisted evil green monster, who's happiness in life ultimately depends upon his ability to imprison humans... but - what are the stars? Who is the monster? What is it he wanted? What kind of sick, twisted, perverted human being could come up with an idea like this? Needless to say, I am full of admiration.

I'm So Lucky is different. Is seems more cynical than anything; it seems to be a parachute jumper that unfortunately jumps into the wrong spot and is captured by a monster. But it has a similar theme... who is lucky? Is it meant cynically, as a sort of "geez" statement from the parachutist? Or is it the monster, whose emotions we sympathize with as he suddenly finds live food falling from the sky? Do we read anything into the fact that he is eating humans? Is he really eating them? Or is the monster drawing emotional comfort from having human company? But if so, why the parachute...?

In stark contrast, I'm Here possesses nothing of this. It's a funny game ... somone is hiding in a game of Hide-and-Seek. But what is such a "happy" picture doing there among the others, wallowing in emotional terror?

The pictures are so extremely weird because they most of the time depict sadness, horror, grief: in essence, Trauma; almost coming across as schizophrenic in their settings. They contain monsters, darkness, tears and blood. It seems catharctic in the sense that evokes the feelings of descending into a person's subconscious and facing the dark secrets buried within. In one way they could be described as the images of an innocent Self faced with dark monsters hidden in closed lockers in the subconscious. Had they been painted professionally they would never have evoked the same feeling of childhood and of innocence. It's like a child trying to understand a complex, dangerous world that really doesn't make sense, and approaching it with a child's naivety. The images come out of that fateful initial contact between the unharmed psyche and the Trauma.

Or maybe he's just in it for the money. :) Either way, it fascinates me. I'm not sure why.


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