MIST2000 infofile by Cthulu & Quip
MIST2000 infofile by Cthulu & Quip
mistigris - who?
Congratulations for making it here. As this artpacks public release
was initially obfuscated behind a series of devious riddles, either you have
been exceedingly clever, intimately connected, sagely patient, or belatedly
curious. Either way: well met!
crowe:mist we are here searching for the ever elusive Mist pack.
Shhhh. You dont want to startle it. It can get awfully ugly.
Here we are, my friends, within visual range of the last of the
unreleased computer art Id been zealously guarding since late 1998, unable to
for whatever variety of reasons release M-9808, unable to fold this material
into that growing albatross, unable to maintain morale in my dwindling cadre of
computer art comrades ultimately, unable even to maintain contact with them
with the BBS rug pulled out from under our feet! but nonetheless planning and
preparing to release some kind of post-artscene post-artpack.
tincat forget the pack, release my goddamn mother!
I never got around to it because without an artscene well, there were
vestiges, but without a local artscene BBS hub, I was lacking two important
components: people to provide art to fill these hypothetical artpacks with, and
an audience to share said artpacks with. As youve seen earlier this year, I
tried with the Living Closet artdisk to share computer art with people in real
life on floppy diskettes -- but you also saw that these were attempts which met
with what could charitably be described as less than full success.
But I persisted in my best artgroup-leader habits picked up on BBSes --
surreptitiously saving things that I liked in case their source became suddenly
unavailable , FOREVER, then asking permission from people to re-publish the
works and baffling their creators. Photos, comics, poems... I recall
courting the involvement of a British fellow who was really into his Game Boy
camera -- we werent quite sure how it would translate into computer art but we
were confident that wed find our way there in the end.
You also see in the collection of works here the would-be fruits of
breaking through the real-world art wall Mistigris never quite managed to
achieve back while it was originally alive, being lapped, then made redundant
by, the Mistigris expats in Hallucigenia otherwise put: why is our t-shirt
design in their artpack?
*** morale has left channel mist - THIS IS IRONIC
That wall was scheduled to be broken by M-9808, but we didnt count on
that release breaking us instead. Here we have some quantity of stockpiled
works in genres photography, photomanipulation, collage, comic book/comic
strip, spoken word, remapped MS-DOS system fonts, MS Paint minimalism that
wed felt belonged in artpacks but that the artscene wouldnt accept of us --
and which wed been inadequately bold to force upon them. Out with a whimper
rather than a bang and what we have now is the faint 16-years-later echo of
the bang that might have been.
otnooishfoo reviewers wouldnt know art if vincent himself threw his
ear at them. YOU CAN QUOTE ME ON THAT!
That said, there is a lot here. Its a hundred megs, I should hope
there is! Some genres and mediums are better-represented than others -- the
textmode art is conspicuously meagre, our showpiece being a final masterwork
from Happyfish we had to await Hallucigenias death to claim and then wait 16
years to remember having claimed 8 as well as the first time in a long time
any stock TheDraw fonts must have been used in an artpack and perhaps the
first time ever for Figlet fonts! Wait, I am forgetting our 2014 April Fools
pack... from Cthulus 2001 winter solstice card, when he knew he still needed
textmode artwork but no longer had access to anyone able to produce it.
Demonstrating just what disarray things were in as the house of the artscene
was crashing to the ground, we have a couple of fun FILEID.DIZ files to
share with you representing complete collections we released -- the Tracker
Fix music compo packs and the spontaneously-assembled 11th e-mag -- which
have been completely lost to the ages, leaving no trace that they ever
existed save these DIZ files. Finally, we have also folded in PRGRS4.ZIP, a
lost installment of Quips instructional Progress series, demonstrating how
to draw a logo. Any kids just starting ANSI art in 2015 -- this is where you
want to begin!
But not all textmode artforms are thinly represented here -- raw text
is textmode at perhaps its most primal, and we have always been pleased to
present it in great quantities! We have the cream of Cthulus college Creative
Writing classes, the final great flourishing of his poetic demiurge -- unrhymed
lits promoting no bulletin boards, actually intoned upon smokey poetry slam
stages to pretentious people who snapped their fingers in place of applause!
crowds that, even if they numbered only five or six, still represented an
expanded audience from our artscene releases because, as we all knew, no one in
the scene actually read lit. Ah, well. Here we feature some lost specimens
from our unique verbal bonsai botanist Crowkeeper author of the formerly-
etext.org-hosted, then lost, recently-reprinted-by-us Scarecrow Poetics
collection as well as some guest pieces from Heretic of the oOze e-mag from
Australia, an ingenious referer log poem by heyoka, liberated from everything2,
and the last known writings by MIA Mist stalwarts Skrubly and Lady Blue and, oh
yes... four hours of music.
DracoMage i wish i had a firm grasp on music theory
haquisaq but, well, a large part of tracking is also sheer musical
thext I wish I had a firm grasp of dracos butt..
thext oops
This mega-dose of tracked computer music is primarily accounted for by
two titans of the form, folks who would dash off a couple of tracks every
morning while filling out the crossword in the time between brushing their
teeth and finishing their coffee. Thirteen of these songs and quite a number
of high-resolution illustrations to boot! are from Obsidian Zero aka ozero,
formerly Onyx, the white hole at the heart of Sonic Equinox, who just kept
creating and creating and hoped against hope that someone would be able to put
some of it to some kind of use. And look out -- this is only a chunk of the
Onyx Legacy music disbursement, so stay tuned. But dwarfing that we also have
an incredible bequeathment of 23 further tracks by Melodia of Empress Play and
formerly sole proprietor of Digitallusions -- speaking of which, we also share
Admiral Skuttlebutts very last song under that label, a few 20th-anniversary
remasterings accompanying new arrangements circa 1999 of original songs -- some
previously released in Mist packs, many not -- for use on the WebTV service
for which Melodia was never actually paid, in case anyone from Microsoft is
Those arent the only stories from our music department -- we also
feature a few of the final seemingly effortless virtuoso compositions from
Haquisaq before he transitioned along to his new identity as Bryface, plus the
long-reserved Beyond from Quip, set aside as a cornerstone showpiece for the
Mistigris music CD that never came together back in the days before he also
assumed a new identity and ascended to drum and bass superstardom. Kindly, we
were gifted a guest track by The Hitman of PMA, as well as one last tune by our
own Dracomage. Cthulus own tracking prowess burgeoned even as the scene was
crumbling around him, and though the A-list of those songs were vented in
ACID-100 back when the odds of this collection ever seeing daylight were
evaluated to be ... remote, a handful of B-list curios remained to spice up
these proceedings. ing /rthur also fed us a few final songs plus his
entire Corroded music disk, recently re-released by us after disappearing
entirely from the record, most of which we have reason to believe he actually
composed. These last two composers also provide our only evidence barring a
joke ANSI in the Aug 99 textmode installment of The Project of Cthulus March
1999 campaign for the artscene to take turns engaging unified themes for lack
of BBSes to advertise, starting with hunger. KAs Hunger for Blood and
CTs feed me as good an excuse as any to write a track around the use of
feedback samples represent the only fruit of this stunted tree. There was
a third, entitled Rapacious or Ravenous, now only a memory of a memory.
Still more yapping about music? Hey, it constitutes the bulk of the
artpack, so three paragraphs is hardly disproportionate. In this archive we
include something that would have been considered unthinkable back in 1998 --
mp3 recordings of performances. Andromeda by Casa del Sol later Perpetual
Dream Theory and still active in some form today as The Inference actually
predates most of these files by a couple of years, and shared space with our
tracks on an audiocassette presented to Iconographer Dwight Atkinson after
inadvertently letting slip during a studio tour that his art practice involved
computer use. Desperate to figure out how to break through to the next level,
we revealed ourselves as the next generation of computer artists... but
somehow, sculptures along bike paths never felt like a true destination for
us. Happyfish graciously provides us with a specimen of her acclaimed filk
-- that is, the folk music of the SF fandom community -- sharing a name and
nothing else with our artgroup. Adri, onetime SysOp of the Transient
Lunacy BBS as Voi, shares with us Jacques Cousteau, a recording of her
technofied pseudo-Satie, featuring yours truly on the creative tool I picked
up after setting poetry aside -- an accordion. But backing up before the
failure of poetry it didnt fail, it performed very reliably at a very
depressing level we have an anonymous DJ providing improvised accompaniment
to Cthulus spontaneous Living Closet invocation at Malkin Bowl: asked what
hed like as background music, I said: give me something with which to
foment revolution. Ah, to be 19 again!
And then there is some stranger stuff. There are quite a few comic
book pages in this collection -- rather than turn Image comics into ANSI art,
we loved the idea of making the comics that other ANSI artists would use for
fuel. For months and indeed years wed been touting the local Dream Factory
project of Silent Knight and Blood Angel as delivering the debut of a comic
book anthology series Any Day Now. You couldnt have known, but they managed
to fulfil their aspiration just as ours was conking out: we had planned to
include sample panels from Dream Factory stories RainClouds and Virgins NOT
Required to promote the comics release, but of course it is all now ancient
history -- so we are pleased to offer you that latter story in its entirety
with gracious permission from its creators Spirit Wolf and Gary R. Hudson.
Also there are the Beef Snakes, which are an excellent specimen of what I found
when I went looking for local fresh blood online circa 1999. And then, and
then... and then there is the unfinished Shakespeares pen comic:
For a time I flirted with my crushes by collaborating with them on
whimsical projects of theirs. Art: it hasnt brought me any status of money
-- surely at least it can get me laid! About that... I could not fit my
rock paper scissors by mail schema into this artpack I thought it was a
terrible idea, but it was a way to get her to keep writing me -- for a while,
at least -- and I doubt I could in any event ever trump my hiding my move on
the back of the stamp gambit but this was another compelling challenge: Im a
writer, and cannot draw. Reeeallly can. not. draw. I included a couple of
gig posters circumstances demanded I make and you can see for yourself! These
ones were collaged together in a graphics program, a big step up from my
initial run of posters made in word processors. But the rules of engagement
for this particular flirtation were clear-cut: take turns alternating panels of
a comic book. OK, I could fudge this: I can have ridiculous passages of
exposition and giant word bubbles I can do extreme close-ups I can abuse
cartography and the conventions of illuminated manuscripts. But ultimately my
only recourse was that of the art group leader: offload the creative work to
someone else. Then my counterpart also disappeared from the proceedings, and
it took on a life of its own, growing exponentially more complex with regular
injections of irrelevant material, which were then deftly woven into the
overarching narrative until the sum of its precarious plot threads rendered it
literally impossible to contribute further panels to. A couple of cooperative
friends kindly drew some panels from later on in the story, with the
understanding that the work of getting from the existing abc to their xyz would
devolve to the shoulders of someone else -- but shockingly, no one ever picked
up the load. Any takers to fill in the blanks? I can script as needed!
As the memberlist and even the SAUCE metadata wont enshrine everyone
who lent two cents to this weird collaboration, I can extend complete credit
here: adding to it was the bad decision of Cthulu, Succulent, Fiver,
Pannekoekologist, Happyfish, Talonswift, Ice Cream Emperor, Weird, Lllucid,
Brian, Bast, Aphrael, Crowkeeper, Hedgehog Emperor, Delire Afar, Otnoo Ishphoo
and Flyingfish, plus pages by a couple of unknowns.
Even the Shakespeares Pen comic must seem like a high paragon of
severe and direct modernist narrative compared to the splendidly baffling
contents of the EPYC subdirectory, a striking example of occasionally digital
creativity I acted as ringmaster for, tying in old colleagues from TABNet and
Mistigris as well as new ones from Everything2 in order to get the requisite
number of warm bodies at terminals needed to play a complete round of the
fabulous game of memetic hardiness Eat Poop You Cat, in which text passages
are illustrated, the illustrations are described, and you get to see how ideas
morph and degrade and how a curious few barrel along untouchably like Teflon
semantic juggernauts along the way.
And this particular round was the work of Cthulu, Delire Afar, Silent
Knight, anotherone, Sylphid, Hedgehog Emperor, The Laughing Fool, Ice Cream
Emperor, Crystal Lattice, Corinthian, Jabberwock, Weird, radlab0, ism,
Pannekoekologist, schmOOnkie pOOnks, and flamingweasel.
There are more conventional works of visual art included in this
collection as well: Ice Cream Emperor not only provides an action photo shot
for our high school yearbook well, he didnt provide it I stole it, scanned
it and hung on to it for 19 years but a whole brief suite of minimalist MS
Paint works exemplifying a certain spirit of that abstract expressionism he and
I studied in first- and second-year art history classes in college. And there
are reams and reams of thematically similar abstract pieces that would have
been hugely impressive to bystanders back in 1998 best suited for use as rave
fliers perhaps from the portfolio of ewerx. Sentience gave a high-resolution
makeover to Etanas ANSI feline Mistigris promo, and speaking of Etana -- were
also proud to finally feature her unforgettable Photoshop enhancement of a bit
of forced-perspective foam boffing with which I won the wild compo at the
Crash 97 demoparty! at a classic TABNet fireworks meet -- the kind of
gathering none of us could ever imagine, in 1998, not recurring on a regular
basis forever.
And, yknow, this and that. In honour of Maeve Wolfs recent visit to
our home turf of Vancouver, Canada, we pulled a suitably delightfully rainy
doodle from her back catalogue. Many moons ago, Dead Soul drew a sketch of me
using Etanas desktop computer. Er, he drew the sketch with a regular stylus
on paper me using Etanas desktop was the subject of the sketch. Kyos
graffiti logo remains as fresh as the day it was throw up on his, er, screen,
and OtnooIshphoos picture from his blue period is as intense as anything from
Eiffel 65. We have Weirds business card design for the TABNet web forums, and
my own HTML table art frontpage design for it, and yet b0nk.org conked out
April 25, 2004 successfully outlasting Mist by quite a bit! Geekboy and
Happyfish wrote some weird little programs that they would probably rather did
not remain on the historical record, but fear not, this is so obscure its the
next best thing to generate Yo Mamma jokes and paranoid delusions as BBS
doors. Quip and Otnoo ishphoo designed the last of our remapped MS-DOS fonts
the rest of which were leaked in our Living Closet artdisk back when this
particular release seemed an historical impossibility, duplicating bleeding-
edge ADF and XBIN functionality using a public domain MS-DOS program,
FONTEDIT.COM, written by Michael J. Mefford and distributed with copies of PC
Magazine a decade prior to 1998... making this collection a love letter to the
past that was already a love letter to its past!
And and and and... have I finally touched upon every single file
included in this epic archive, returning to its intended home like Odysseus to
Ithaca after 20 years lost in war and at sea? I sure hope so, because I need
to really get started on putting together Mistigris 21st-anniversary artpack,
MIST1015.ZIP ... find it very, very soon at finer artscene websites everywhere!
After this and that, we really dont have much remaining in our once-titanic
backlog to throw at you -- the Mistigris revival is coasting on fumes. And
nothing as relatively easy to discharge as artpacks and music disks! Mostly
what we have is three e-mags worth of articles, so I guess in 2016 youll be
seeing us presenting the latest news from 1998 as our last gasp 8 But as we
hope weve amply demonstrated -- we love the arts, and indeed despite our long
hiatus, never stopped loving them... so having gathered some of the players
back to the table, perhaps weve set the stage for the resuming of
collaboration and the possibility of future work together again. 1998-2014 was
just a coffee break that ran a little long, is all! Time will tell. October
2031: Mistigris finally releases fragmentary artpack materials gathered in 2016
but never released.
Mistigris 2015: dont say nostalgia, say YES-talgia!
mistfunk.tumblr.com / twitter.com/mistfunk
-quip mistigris - 20 years
of funk