Processing …

Still, THE SPINSTER (2013)

Lots of learning, thinking, soul-searching, processing in the past few weeks. Best July I have had for a while – i.e., no mania. I am ready for hard physical labor.

Over the weekend I got my EOM royalty report from Amazon Instant Video. 12 videos is not a lot, but it is – i.e., because of the kind of work that I do. Sometimes I sell a lot more and sometimes I sell a little less, but for the past year, I sell at least 5 per month – especially the LUCY video, which still hasn’t gotten a good review. It’s like that thing one “loves to hate,” perhaps.

But what is most important to me as an increasingly introverted human person is that my “gratification profit” is high compared to the amount of commitments that I have to make to get that gratification – i.e., I do not have to show up anywhere except my own studio to get that gratification.

I have never been very competitive with other people. I have been extremely competitive with myself. I aged out of competing with other people by high school. I think I have now aged out of competing with myself. I am having so much fun making shit. And when I’m done with it, I’m done with it; and I upload it to Amazon.

Process is everything.

​The never enough


Still, VOICE pre-production

During a TV history show today, Big History on the History Channel, the narrator referred to the evidence that all addictions originate in salt addiction. I had never heard that before this morning, even though there are references to it all over the Web. I immediately began to madly process what I’d heard, something that I’ve been trying to understand for years. Not addiction itself – but “why addiction.”
I binged and purged from age 15 to age 33. I was just fine with it really until I met the man to whom I’ve now been married for 28 years. One day after running five miles and then downing 3 cartons of yogurt, 2 bananas and a peach, I was of course barely able to move while I waited for my brand of purge to process itself (let’s just say I still have beautiful teeth). I was fine with it really until I thought, “What if Mike came to the door right now? You couldn’t even get up to let him in.” I lay like that, fermenting in the same position, half lying on the floor, for two hours until I was completely cramped.
Within a few weeks I had researched bulimia “cures” and within a few months I had stopped purging (which for me drastically cut down on my binging, though only in body, not in mind). Three months later, I was going to individual therapy 2 to 3 times per week in order to be cleared for entering a group therapy program for bulimics at the University of Nebraska. ​Six months later, I had binged for the last time (ever).
What I have been trying to understand for years is why I was able to stop purging and binging on my own and maintain my abstinence while none of the other 5 women group could. One of my acting teachers worked as a psychiatric social worker when he didn’t have an acting gig. While he was coaching me on my show about bipolar disorder, I mentioned I had been treated for bulimia. When I told him I didn’t do “that” anymore, he told me that I wasn’t a true bulimic if I was able to quit by myself without following up with psychotropic therapy.
Yeah. Sure. He never witnessed me living in an apartment in Hoboken for years with no refrigerator nor food in the cupboards because if there was more than the meal I had brought home for dinner, I would eat it – ALL of it. And then I would call in sick the next day, run five miles, come home and take a shower, go hit tennis balls until I had a migraine, go home and take painkillers and then go back to hit tennis balls until I was totally crashed.
I had an eating disorder that I quit on my own just like I quit sucking my thumb when I was seven, quit biting my fingernails in junior high and quit smoking forever and ever two weeks after I met the nonsmoker I intended to marry.
I have definitely, like a lot of other functional people, had addictions. Like a lot of other functional people and also unlike a lot of other functional people, I quit my addictions. The process of quitting really sucked, especially quitting binging and purging, but when it was over, it was over.
So this morning watching the documentary that raised the theory of salt being at the heart of addiction and scenes depicting ancient man seeking and harvesting salt, three words zapped to the front of my brain: “The never enough.”
As I had lain immobile fermenting yogurt, bananas and a peach months earlier, during my last binge, which was a 20-minute Waterloo of a gorge on Juicy Fruit chewing gum (look it up, binge endorphins result from a chemical process, regardless of the amount of food consumed during the binge), I sat immovably, precariously and extremely uncomfortably for 2-1/2 hours on the edge of the bathtub. Legs full of needles, aching back, migraine, teeth gnashing uncontrollably in rebellion against giving up my addiction – it was really awful. Really. And then it hit me: “No matter how much I binge, it is never going to be enough. Never. The need, the drive, the urge is inside my head and has no connection to anything else and never will. And it will never be anything other than the way it is because it can’t. I have to learn to live with it – the never enough. Walk away.”
Walk away. It was a relief, even though at the time I thought the hole in my life from giving up 18 years of binging and purging would always be raw and bloody. And I think it was, for quite a while, I think. But as long as I could feel that horrific bloody rawness, I would not replace my bulimia with another addiction. And now, in my 60’s after learning so much about myself and a lot of other people, I wonder whether the never enough is just another part of the human condition around which an adjustment is necessary for everyone, not just people who have difficulty dealing with it.


This is for you – you know who you are

I believe it is completely reasonable for an adult who is a journeyman in one visual art form to be attracted to experimenting in another visual art form. Not only are there basic principles common to different mediums, a journeyman artist already is disciplined about craft. In fact, craft is second nature to a journeyman.

It’s really not surprising that so many artists begin working in another medium when they are of a certain age.

You know who you are. That’s the most important thing.

Blogging A Movie: PASSAGES, A MYTH

PASSAGES, A Myth, a performance art movie, is vlogged in a Youtube playlist.


Sum’o, King of the Gods

Sylviatoyindustries PASSAGES Sum'a Rebukes the Humans Ⓒ 2015

Sum’a the Enforcer Rebukes the Humans

Sylvia Toy PASSAGES - Part 1 Sketch Ⓒ 2015 1

The Ancestors of the Gods Wander the Cosmos

Sylvia Toy PASSAGES Birth Scene Test 5 e Ⓒ 2015

Birth of the Incarnate

Sylviatoyindustries, niche artist

Performance art is not for the faint of heart.

Neither is selling it on Amazon.

The Blue Lady


Lucy, the First Human

TYFTB (thank you from the bottom)

Sylviatoyindustries, a niche artist selling performance art movies on Amazon Instant Video. I am an actor, filmmaker, & performance artist with a BA in Art & English, whose senior project in undergraduate school was a production of Sartre’s No Exit in a chapel. I have exhibited video art internationally since 2008.

I studied videography & editing under professionals during 2-1/2 years of tutoring & 3 years of on-the-job commercial experience.

I workshop my video performance art projects scene by scene on YouTube and Vimeo. I am quite psyched to be selling the kind of performance art that people go to galleries to see while sipping Chardonnay in the world’s biggest online marketplace.



Blogging a Movie: PASSAGES, Sum’a The Enforcer Rebukes the Humans

I have been rethinking Sum’a The Enforcer’s character, costume and motivation. For one thing, the seethrough fabric of her veil is unworkable in my setup. While I came up with a new design for her veil, I also decided that this movie will have no dialogue as Sum’a is the only character who speaks and that just was not working. Today, I experimented with vocalization that I have been working on and I remembered all the B-roll I shot during an unhappy but productive period 4 years ago.

The audio in this video was all made by me. To create the wall of human speech, I surfed reality television stations for half an hour, typing phrases spoken, randomly placing them in a “monologue,” and then chopping the monologue and layering it, applying different pitches and echo effects.

Sylviatoyindustries PASSAGES Sum'a Rebukes the Humans Ⓒ 2015