I get so many different assignments. Do this person do that thing… Art directors get used to me because I will produce anything they throw at me. I like it when they feel confident enough in me to just say, “Can you make this thing that you’ve never done before” and not even have it dawn on them that maybe it’s WAAAAAAY out of the scope of what I do. The Wall Street Journal usually doesn’t do that to me, but on a slightly different level they do. They asked me to do a fellow artist’s portrait. Patrick Oliphant is an editorial cartoonist. Syndicated, and I would say very successful. I wanted to do political cartoons at one time, but my path lead a different route. Political cartoon/caricature art is only a percentage of what I do in art. And that is great. I don’t get burnt out doing the same subject all the time. Not to say my situation is better, but it is good for specifically me. I researched Mr Oliphant a bit and could have spent days pouring over his work. I especially liked his little penguin character that always had some poignant comment. The WSJ didn’t think people would know why he was commenting like he was in the illo so they took it out in the printed version. I like to think I was getting the character of what Mr Oliphant was doing. So here you get to see the behind the scene story. You are welcome.
The Dave Clark Five. They didn’t give me anything to go on so it was just portrait time. I loved his eyebrows. I’ve been in a mood of late to let more of the paint marks show. The more popular art used in illustration of late seems to lean more towards cleaner lines and not much more than one bright color. I like bright colors.
My first assignment from the Wall Street Journal was in 1997. They hired me a lot right from the start but Sept 11, 2001 messed that up (along with just about everything) but on a personal level, I didn’t get an assignment from them for over six years. They have been assigning me portraits to do on a pretty consistent basis for the last two years or so. This is one of the jobs for the Marketplace section back in Feb. A very quick turnaround considering the deadline. Adding faces shortens the deadline for an illustration!
Free lancers can’t call in sick and there are no paid sick days.
One of the down sides to being a self employed artist. I still don’t have to commute to a job site every day, so there are nice things about it. But when you do get sick, and I was about two weeks ago, it gets stressful. Add in it’s tax season and most of my clients are very late paying me and it’s time for the fetal position! I found it amusing that I didn’t have the time to fill out my forms for Obama Care as I finished this illustration deadline for The Week about Obama care. Not that I had extra cash to pay it anyway. I turned in the final and became sick later that day. I couldn’t work for three days and so much that needed to be done! I’m still chasing down checks and trying to catch up with the other work to meet my deadlines.
I was given the wrong spelling for Kathleen Sebelius on the cast. So while they were checking that they noticed the emergency sign. But I noticed I had also forgot to cross the T in Kathleen which they didn’t notice. I think it is interesting how your mind will fill things in that are in the right area but might not be exact. As long as people don’t drive like that!
Inspirational visit to MOCCA art festival over the weekend. Hanging with friends and over dosing on art! Left to right: Lima, Yao, Steve.
I never heard the full story of the union worker’s side of the whole debate. In the reports I’ve heard or read the people interviewing the politicians and business people who comment confidently that it was the democratic party and the greedy unions that bankrupt Detroit. While this seems believable to most it was a little off to me. Whatever greed and corruption that Detroit had going on I’m sure it wasn’t worse than many other cities of similar size. My simple view of it was the car industry went to China and Mexico for the cheap labor and ridiculous profits. Anyone remember NAFTA and “favored nation” status? Corporations don’t give a crap about people, just profit. Instead of making a small profit here ( but still a PROFIT! ) and keeping people employed and contributing to a stronger economy in Detroit they said “Screw you guys”. Detroit became Detroit because of the auto industry and when it left it was like ripping out the entire skeleton of a person. Then the greed and corruption was all that was left and those things are about as good for the general population as an unregulated BP oil rig in a fish tank. So this illustration is greed and corruption battering the guy who just wants to make a decent living. Or in other words, a union guy. Just my observations, please don’t consider me an expert.
I don’t do my own code and website manipulation. Just the updates like this. So as a result I haven’t been updating as often as I wanted. I also managed to make my fine art site disappear. Tadaaa!
I’ll be tweaking this site and restoring the other one as the next week or two go by. I enjoy hearing from everyone and try to responding as quickly as I can.
A quick note. The Week Magazine cover I did a while back addressing the gay marriage ban being over turned in the south depicted Clark Gable from his “Gone with the wind” persona, Rhett Butler. He was holding hands with another fellow. I received a bunch of emails (for me) asking who he is. He is a completely made up character invented almost like a police sketch artist might work. The editors described a face to me and I took a few shots of my own face for shadows and structure. The final looked nothing like me, but it didn’t look like anyone else either.
Let’s pretend this copy, er, personal message from Fred, is being written by Fred’s super agent. We’ll call him Secret agent Powers, Auston Powers. But it’s totally not, this is all words from Fred and his head, I mean my head.
Groooovie. Here is the next Queen mum.
Fred rules! He’s better than sliced bread and he’s gluten free.
But in a fun kind of rewarding way. I just bought a new wireless keyboard does it show? Anyway, I have done a bunch of jobs already this year. Not all are in the scope of my focus here. I like to do many different types of art, but some are away from what I initially set out to do. Caricatures have always been my focus but over the years it’s evolved to exaggerated portrait to very little exaggeration. I feel fortunate that I’m asked by clients to do many different things now. Different jobs let me flex different muscles.