Monday, October 1, 2007

Vision-TV Movie

TV Movie
Image size 8"x 11"
Paper size 9"x 12"

Can you guess who the actor is? Do you know what movie I was watching?

It was an August night, the wee hours of the morning, actually, the time when the best old movies seem to come on tv. I hung one foot off the edge of the bed as I watched the television set in my bedroom. Flares of blue light surrounded the screen and broke the darkness of the room.

It is a good movie. One of those that I didn't appreciate when it first came out, but one that grows on me the more I see it. I first became more interested after watching "Star Trek" and realizing that a young William Shatner was in it. He really looked good then. And, in more recent years, I have decided that this is an excellent move.

Another movie that falls in that category is "Treasure of Sierra Madre". As a loyal Tim Holt fan, I would watch any movie with him in it, over and over. But, when this one came out, I didn't like it. I hated that beard Tim wore in the movie. He was so good looking and that awful beard just hid his face. I didn't care for Humphry Bogart, but I got more interested when I read that Jack Holt, Tim's father, had a tiny part in the movie. It took me a long time to find the scene that he was in, but I finally found it. As I watched, and grew older, the movie, and the story, became more interesting. So, now, when it is on, I am going to watch it, with my chair in front of the tv set so I can see their faces. (I still don't like that beard, though. I think the story would have worked without it.)

The faces, now, as I watch, are distorted in color and shape, unless I am sitting about 2 feet in front of the tv. Yes, color, although this was a black and white movie that I was watching! There was a purple circle over the main part of the picture, with green surrounding the purple area. A warm glow washed over the rest of the image. I could just make out a shape of the tv screen behind the rays of light.

I guess my cataracts create the effect of the rays and blurring, while Macular Degeneration causes the distortion and strange colors. Put them all together, and it makes for some abstract views. When I close the good eye, the purple and green spot with distorted lines around it, are always there. And, the image is darker. With both eyes open, I can see better, but things are still as in the painting above, blurred and distorted, unless I am really close. At least they are brighter and closer to a realistic color. Print is sometimes very faint, a light gray or blue, and just marks. If I move back a bit, they become wavey and look like squiggles instead of letters. From my bed, I can't make out what the tv says at all. I have to constantly get up and walk over to the tv set, if I want to find out what I am watching, what time it is, or what year a movie was made. The same is true of watching tv from the couch in the den. If I really want to see a program, I move my rocking chair and a tv tray in front of the tv set. Of course, no one else in the family can see, then. I guess it is lucky that they don't like most of what I like to watch, so they leave me in front of the tv while they go their rooms and watch what they want. They don't know what they are missing!

Have you guessed the movie or the actor, yet? I was going to give you a cliff hanger and tell you to come back tomorrow to find out. But, I won't do that to you. The actor was Richard Widmark. The movie was "Judgement at Neuremburg".

"TV Movie" was done with Winsor Newton watercolors on 140 pound Arches watercolor paper.

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