Category Archives: Murmur

“Story Room” Animation (!)

My first real animation, modest as it is. Based upon the Otoe series collages, and the way they work best with each other in my mind. Created in Windows Live Movie Maker; excited about this (!)

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Filed under animation, Carrcass Artists, collages 2d, MAPS, Murmur, Qbrick, Stanley, Shining, The, Story Room, Washington

Kubrick was a collage artist.

I’m convinced of this now. Except he collaged together different elements of his films, including segues between shots. Else you can’t explain why Jack’s light colored t-shirt aligns so perfectly with the white edges of the typewriter here in the crossfade between shots 171 and 172. The t-shirt advertises Stovington High (a name taken directly from the Steven King source book) and their mascot, the eagle. The typewriter we crossfade to here is an Adler, which means “eagle” in German. There’s also a more stylized eagle emblem on the typewriter above the brand name. Jack’s t-shirt, in the fade, begins to say A D L E R instead of STOVINGTON as his arm moves in front of the latter. There’s no doubt about it: Kubrick wanted the Stovington Eagles and the Adler typewriter and its eagle emblem to be *directly* connected. Second eagle replaces the first.


While I have shot 172 loaded in my DVD player, I’ll show you something else about it that others have spotted. Instead of working on his story in the shot, Jack is throwing that yellow ball against the Indian mural above the hearth. At one point, he assumes the position of the an upside down version of the Tarot’s Hanged Man, the 12th card of the pack’s Major Arcana.


And there’s the monkey shaped driftwood again beside him.


This event is also actually synched in Carrcass-10, where the REMs (or *Murmur* now) sing, “Your feet are going to be on the ground,” a verse from their “Stand” single. Jack’s feet, however, very briefly leave the ground while he assumes the reversed hangman position.

Interestingly, the Hanged Man card appears in Steven King’s Dark Tower series, begun several years after the release of The Shining. The Hanged Man wikipedia article specifically earmarks the Gunslinger novel, the first of the long series, where it symbolizes the main character Roland and his quest.

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Filed under Murmur, Qbrick, Stanley, Shining, The

Steptoe Series 04

(continued from)

A second, smaller Danny-head suddenly appears from the back of his first head, turning the opposite way.


What we have here in this 4 part collage animation is a meshing of several separate scenes from The Shining. The Danny related images — head, arm, dart, extra head — come from early in the film, when he first directly encounters the Grady Twins while playing darts in the game room of hotel the family’s just arrived at. Danny throws 3 darts at the board, scores no points apparently, (missing the scoring area each time) and then goes up to the board and pulls 2 of the 3 darts out before being “alerted” to the presence of the twins behind him. We’ve also spoken about how the board in front of him would have a backwards 2-3-7 in alternating numbers (culled from Kearns’ research once more). The last dart he pulled was right below the 3 in the center, reinforcing this. There’s no doubt, to me, that the character Danny sees all this, and attaches the dartboard with Room 237 later on in the film. He’s a bright boy — he “shines” even. 🙂

Why is Danny then throwing a dart at Steptoe Butte, and at a giant ear no less? We’ve identified the ear as that of Michael Stipe, lead singer of the REMs. Michael Stipe has been translated, through the not-to-be-underestimated power of Carrcass-1, into the variant Steptoe Butte (same name as the mountain), heading a variant band known as Murmur (in “our” reality, the name of the 1st album of REM). The giant ear seems to be about their music, since it is Stipe’s. I’ve already speculated, I believe, (writing this several weeks after the last collage interpretation) that this is more about the belittled early single “Shiny Happy People”. And this brings us directly to the second, major section of The Shining indicated in Collage 04 images: the Jack-Lloyd bar scene. Or actually scenes plural, since Jack visits the time warp bar on two separate occasions while living in the hotel. From the bar scenes, we have Jack’s head, Lloyd’s head, and the lighted top of the bar itself between them. In a two tier process, these second Shining elements emerge from behind the first (Danny-dart throwing). And in Collage 04c, we have an interesting transformation of Danny’s dart into what appears to be a cigarette or maybe a cigar. But perhaps it is a marijuana cigarette instead — a joint? Anyway, it certainly also doubles as a lighted fuse if so, and in Collage 04d, the final permutation, the background Jack-Lloyd stuff disappears in a flash of white hot light, taking Danny’s arm and transformed dart with it, and also the inverted VW bug (blue) rushing toward the mountain in 04a, 04b, and 04c. I suppose that would be another, different aspect of The Shining to figure in here — Jack driving the VW bug up to the hotel at the beginning of the movie, and then again (plural scenes once more), when taking wife Wendy and son Danny to the hotel after procuring the winter caretaker position. The VW has reversed position and color (yellow to blue) from Collage 03 before this. I believe it represents a switch from emphasis on Tom’s Petty High (Tom Petty variant band) to Murmur (REM variant band) in Carrcass-1, per the colors demonstrated in Collage 00, 01, and 02 already (red = Story Room, yellow = Tom’s Petty High, blue = Murmur). That Danny’s head rests atop Stipe’s torso and Stipe’s ear projects from Steptoe Butte in Collage 04 reinforces this interpretation.

Bull’s eye becomes Bull’s ear — what does this mean, then? We’ve all heard the expression eye for an eye (and tooth for tooth), which means retributions will equal damages done. The ear is on top of Steptoe Butte, and Stipe has become the same as Steptoe in variant terms… so the mountain’s top represents *his* top (or head — ears included). That Stipe’s *eye* shows up on Danny’s bigger head in Collage 04d is telling… as the ear disappears at the same time after being present in 04a, 04b, and 04c. I believe that the spirit of Danny has quote unquote possessed the head of Stipe, or Stipe allowed this takeover — for the purposes of enacting the collage animation. When the process ends, i.e., the Jack-Lloyd elements have been manifested and then destroyed, in effect, then Danny can allow Stipe to repossess the head, eye returned (and perhaps the rest of the head’s elements shortly). The smaller Danny head then emerges from the back of the larger Danny head, which is being returned to Stipe, we’ll say. This smaller head then becomes the true Danny-head after this. The head turns around from the position of the first. In The Shining, this is when Danny turns his head away from the dartboard to view the Grady Twins. The dart game appears to be over, just as the Jack-Lloyd bar elements of Collage 04 and the Steptoe collage series as a whole have ended.

Moving on for now: what happens in Collage 05?


Well, The twins are also seen there (!), but in a grassy meadow and not in the game room. We’re still near Steptoe Butte with this picture’s background, so one can imagine the smaller and now truer Danny-head actually sees this collage when turning around from Steptoe Butte itself. He sees the twins, but he also sees Jack from the very end of The Shining movie, positioned like The Devil in his namesake tarot card as also already talked about quite a lot in this blog. I’ve also seen discussion about the Grady Twins being identified with The Twins card (card 6 of the Major Arcana, as The Devil is card 15), and there’s actually a degraded version of what appears to be these same twins in card 15, now loosely chained to the devil itself and not free.

And there’s yet another tarot card more obviously present in Collage 05: The World, its final (21st) trump card. Behind the first physical appearance of the Grady Twins in the movie is a controversial poster seeming to depict, in a lower resolution capture, some kind of horned being surrounded by what might be an ourobouros image, or a snake swallowing its tail. To me, it seemed very similar to the circular wreath of “The World” card, and earlier in this blog I made an attempt to overlap the two and discuss the results. Through Collage 05, I’ve now more successfully integrated the two, and also incorporated Jack’s image as the devil. How is this done? Through the bull pictured on The World Card, which lies in the lower left corner to us. Simply put, I substituted the bull’s head of the card with Jack’s, or, more accurately, superimposed Jack’s head atop the bull’s. The bull represents Taurus in the card, one of the four fixed signs of astrology along with Leo, Scorpio, and Aquarius. Each of these signs are represented in the card by figures: bull for Taurus as spoken about, lion for Leo, eagle for Scorpio, and man for Aquarius.

“The World” tarot card.

Danny first sees the Grady Twins, w/ controversial poster under discussion highlighted.

(continued in)


Filed under collages 2d, MAPS, Murmur, Qbrick, Stanley, Shining, The, Washington

Michael Stipe on Space Ghost.

Michael’s hatred of “Shiny Happy People” referenced. He shows up 8 minutes in.

Classic. As a lot of Space Ghost was… is.

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Filed under Carrcass Artists, Murmur, Space Coast

Steptoe Series 01

The little collage series I’m presently calling Steptoe, forming *very* quickly in the last couple of days, could be over and done with except for polishing up some of the pictures. I’m going to start analyzing the results.

Collage 01


This is supposedly the band Story Room in their geometric masks, posing on a Washington state road with Steptoe Butte in the distance. Hucka D. also states that Steptoe Butte is the name of the sometimes lead singer of the band, which is a kind of play on Michael Stipe of the REMs, who figure into Carrcass-10. Already confused? I sorta am too so bear with me. The three band members of Story Room also don different colored disguises… but what I’m initially confused about is as follows. The yellow figure is most strongly established, representing Tom’s Petty High, a variant band of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers used in Carrcass-10. So let’s back up again to a *Collage 00*.


This particular collage, the actual first such creation of the new series if expanded this way, is a cartoon-ish representation of a scene in The Shining where Danny is playing with his toy vehicles on a geometric Overlook Hotel rug. Suddenly a yellow ball rolls in from the bottom of the screen (depicted as yellow-green in the cartoon). Where did it come from? Danny calls for his mother, thinking or hoping she is playing with him. The door to Room 237 down the hall, formerly locked, stands open and ready for entry. So that’s the center of the collage — Danny playing with his toys and the (yellow) ball rolling in, perhaps originating from the ultra-mysterious Room 237 itself.

But what of the tiled circle of squares and triangles surrounding this inner rug area? This has become a symbol of Carrcass-10 itself, enclosing and fixing the spacio-temporal essence of The Shining in a new way. As the movie The Shining takes as its base Stephen King’s source novel of the same name and elaborates upon it, so too does C-10 for the movie. It is a new movie in essence, smaller and leaner and cleaner perhaps. You lose something but you also gain something. This is *not* a replacement for The Shining movie, but an alternate way of looking at it.

We begin the new work, then, with not Wendy Carlos’ “Dies Irae”, a reinterpretation of a Hector Berlioz movement from his essential Symphonie Fantastique, but Petty’s “Running Down a Dream”, a popular late 1980s rock single. The opening visuals remain exactly the same, however: Jack’s yellow VW bug navigating the windy mountain roads leading to the Overlook Hotel. For the beginning of Carrcass-10, we’ve then simply substituted the original soundtrack in the movie for a different “soundtrack”. Does it work? Very much so!

Why the name change from Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers to a different, “variant” name? the reader might ask here. It’s just part of the process: every artist used in a carrcass — and these number now not only the negative valued 10 but many more *positive* valued ones — can earn a variant name as repurposed. They’re allowed that option and also maybe one could call it even an “honor”. Sometimes variant names take a while to develop. Story Room is a recent development, and one that goes so far as to mask even the original band it’s based upon. Story Room and Carrcass-10 are most linked. Story Room is represented by the red of the tiled circle in the above picture. The red aspect most defines the circle — the blue and yellow squares/triangles merely enhance an original idea. So we’re back to the beginning again: who is Story Room?

Story Room is the red figure with the sphere topped body. He’s the boss. He calls the shots. *From* him (or her) emerges two more figures: the yellow, tetahedron masked being we’ve identified with Tom’s Petty High (variant of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers), and then the blue cube topped figure identifed with REM (variant name pending) and lead singer Steptoe Butte (Michael Stipe variant). The new little collage series, also named “Steptoe”, seems to be more about attempting to structure a variant name for REM/Michael Stipe, to follow up on the seeming success of the transformation of Tom Petty and the HB to Tom’s Petty High. The chosen name for Stipe is, first and last name, Steptoe Butte. This comes directly from a very interesting landscape feature of the same name in eastern Washington state, depicted in the distance in the first collage above. Why Steptoe for Michael? Okay, so this was the lead-in: in looking up Stipe in a geographic database, only a handful of entries came up. One was Stipe Cemetery very near Steptoe Butte. So it was examining Stipe Cemetery on maps and photos that led me quickly to this butte. I found it interesting that if you replace the “o” with an “i” in the “Steptoe”, you’d have an anagram of “Stipe”.


Collage 02:

So what happens in Collage 02 of the series is that we move into Stipe Cemetery itself, prompted by a blurb on Michael Stipe uncovered in a search for “Stipe Cemetery” images? I link to this article and the related picture in this blog post below (“Stipe”). Elements of this particular image of Stipe will show up a little later in the series.

Danny of The Shining reappears on the edge of this cemetery. He’s discovered the top of the yellow figure in the preceding collage, hopefully just the tetrahedronal mask and not his whole, mostly buried body (!) Collage 02 actually comes in two parts. As Danny is staring at the golden tetrahedron, it changes, in the resulting animation, into his yellow ball from Collage 00, the one that rolls up to him apparently from the now open Room 237 and seeming to invite him into that sinister lair. What’s this ball now doing in Stipe Cemetery in Washington state?

It seems to have something to do with the fact that in the Shining movie, the hotel manager tells Jack and Wendy at one point that the hotel is built on an old Indian burial ground. In this way, the Washington cemetery of this collage becomes the grounds of the hotel itself, and Danny’s geometric rug transforms into the cemetery’s grassy turf.

The other two members of Story Room look on, blue and red. We’ve already identified the blue being more with Michael Stipe and his REMs, and so perhaps that’s why he comes to the forefront more in a collage based in Stipe Cemetery.

It’s a strange thing, but I realized early on in this collage generating that collages 01, 02, 03 actually run backwards in time, with Collage 03 representing the actual beginning of Carrcass-10/The Shining with Jack’s yellow VW, and Collage 02 a later scene with Danny and the yellow ball and the open Room 237. The two yellow objects, car and ball, become one in the process. Tom’s Petty High takes on the yellow hue because their music is playing now the whole time we see the yellow car driving through the mtns. to the hotel. Danny playing with his toy vehicles later on in the hotel and the yellow ball rolling up (after Jack is awarded the winter caretaker position during the interview he drives to), is a microcosm of the opening — toy vehicles replacing the real ones parked in the hotel lot, and of course, the yellow ball represents the arriving yellow bug or yellow VW.

So in Collage 02, the ball is the VW and the cemetery is the hotel due to the Indian burial ground reference. Why is this Stipe cemetery? Well, it’s because Stipe/REM will factor in two additional tiles of Carrcass-10, just like Tom’s Petty High “before” it. And through this usage, Stipe transforms into Steptoe, a variant name. Clear as mud now, eh?




Filed under ., collages 2d, Murmur, Story Room, Tom's Petty High

Experiments w/ a Bullsear (Test continued)





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January 15, 2014 · 5:13 am



AIDS-ey REM singer Michael Stipe has always looked a bit peaky, but is it enough to shove him through the door of life down into the deep, dark wine cellar of death? Let’s wait and see, eh?

Predictor: Alistair Reid, Brighton
Mortality Status: Alive

Stipe Cemetery.





Filed under ., collages 2d, MAPS, Murmur, Qbrick, Stanley, Shining, The, Washington

Postcard from Steptoe


Story Room consists of 3 individuals who don the geometric shapes sphere, tetrahedron and cube to mask their true identities. Sometimes lead singer Steptoe Butte is from Whitman County, Washington.

From the Uncyclopedia entry on Steptoe Butte:

“He was a striking-looking guy and he also bought weird records, which not everyone in the store did”, collaborator Pete StarBuck recalled. The two became friends and eventually decided to form a band.[1] StarBuck and Steptoe started writing music together;[2] at the time Steptoe also spent time in a local group named Raid.[3] The pair were soon joined by Bill Mills and Mike Berry and named themselves Murmur, a name Steptoe selected at random from the dictionary.[4]


“Hucka D., clarify for me something. Wouldn’t Steptoe be the blue figure here?”

Hucka D.:



Is he the yellow figure as well?

Hucka D.:



The red figure is the boss.

Hucka D.:

That’s Story Room.


I’m confused. I thought the name of the band was, or is, Story Room.

Hucka D.:

It is. (pause)


Where does Tom’s Petty High fit in[ here]?

Hucka D.:

Yellow. Lemon yellow.


Each… sorry.

Hucka D.:

Each rule over their portions of The Shining that come before or after. So Tom’s Petty High rules the psychiatrist-Danny scene. What have you renamed that recently?


The Story Room. Oh, wait. That’s — I know what you’re talking about now — that’s the Bear Pillow Scene, with all the little blips and sparkles, at least a handful that seem to mean something.

Hucka D.:

Sorry as well: actually Story Room rules that scene. So that’s why you have the word “strange” highlighted spoken by the doctor, and then the Duck just afterwards. The duck is both the lemon colored VW that protagonist [sic?] Jack drives to the Overlook Hotel to start the movie, and also Duck, WV, then. The presence of The Duck demonstrates the rule of Story Room, see.


Let’s see.


Hucka D.:

Story Room had a lot of fun with that room.


Isn’t Story Room, though, the room in the exact center of the Shining with all the rainbow colors, Hucka? Rainbow man Hallorann lies in the middle. Soon to shine. [no answer]

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January 13, 2014 · 10:38 am