I'm not sure what the folks at The Week magazine will want to focus on for the cover this week, but it seems a lot of attention has been going to Trump these past few months. I'm aggravated by that. Trump the business man I was more or less indifferent to. But as a politician, he's freak'n scary! I never thought a non career politician would have been so awful. But what Trump's run for office really shows in all it's bluntness is this is what all the other politicians are, and that is the political rep for the wealthiest corporations in America. Take Hillary, donors to her super PACs are throwing in million dollar checks. I'm sure they expect some access to the president if she wins. She might as well wear the company logo on her "president" name-tag. All but Bernie Sanders has a super PAC. Trump has probably donated to several of these super PACs even now to protect his business interests.
I predict Trump will be a footnote by the 2nd or 3rd primary once the real campaigning kick in. Not because I think he's the worst person to be running for president of the group, but because going by past elections, the unorthodox guy who is going strong early usually isn't the one that we see getting the nomination. I still have a nagging feeling the fix will go down and we'll have a Bush vs Clinton choice in November. At least things will "only" continue into a downward spiral.
I've always liked the grace of some of the animations I occasionally see. I follow a few animators on Instagram and it's so simple looking. I know that's the trick, it appears simple but it's not easy to do. Throwing abandon to the coffee spirits, I began toying around with the style in my sketchpad at a cool little coffee shop on West Broadway and Canal St on the edge of SoHo. They don't have a bathroom for customers so I never stay for more than one cup of coffee! It's small and intimate and I always hear interesting conversations when I'm there.
I started with a circle or oval for the head. That is all I got. I have no philosophy or direction behind it other than trying to be aware that I'm not breaking the spaces up too evenly. I never took a class on it, but I know what I like when I see it.
It's OK that it's Monday again, that just means we get another week to do our thing! Today I share with you the story of the cover I painted for The Week Magazine last week. It came out Friday, July 17th.
Cover meeting at The Week. Iranian nuke deal. The editors ask for John Kerry and Hassan Rouhani as cooks in a very used looking kitchen. The first thought that came to my mind was what a mess my own kitchen usually is. Then all the opportunities for symbols and metaphor. I wasn't trying to hide anything the editors didn't want so I put them all out there. I put a half chopped carrot on the floor as in "dangling a carrot in front of a horse" type of idea. Of course, who was the horse in this scenario?
I made a clear indication of a two headed chicken which for me referred to nuclear energy like the three eyed fish in the Simpson's cartoons that live too close to the nuclear plant. I had a cleaver stuck in to that. They told me one head was good enough. HA! I didn't think they'd let that one in but it doesn't hurt to try. If I don't try to be creative and try for the unorthodox I'll get boring. Boring is bad. I thought the cleaver stuck in the chicken would have been too much for them but they let that go. I had to do an image of Assad with dead bodies behind him for another cover and I made them bloody and they let that go too. I guess implied violence is OK but not silly. But Kerry and Rouhani as chefs in a dirty kitchen is pretty goofy as well.
I rented t a nice car to go for a ride and see a friend last Monday. That friend being Mark Texeira, or "TEX" as he signs his comic book work. We hung out in the little town in Connecticut that he moved to last year. He showed me his studio which he is still setting up. Good to see all the new work he's doing for various Kickstarter books. Everything is being painted and has a light watercolor touch.
We came back to my place to continue talking about art etc. He was going to stay the night and we were going to paint and talk shop. Well, Tex doesn't come to NYC very often so we had visitors. Our mutual friends, Travis Louie, and Ray Lago came to hang out. Ray and Travis had never really hung out so it was a good time and very inspirational. Molly was in the studio putting the finishing touches on her memoir, "Drawing Blood" that is scheduled to come out in the fall. She took a break to hang out and BS with us. I think she actually had Ray as a teacher when she was attending FIT. I'm very fortunate to live where I do so it's relatively easy for folks to visit.
Out of nowhere, Tex pulls out a small sketch pad that he had passed around to various artists he has met at conventions. He hangs out with some great people! I was actually in this one. I had completely forgot about the pad let alone what I had made in it! It was 3 pages and is completely goofy. I'm sure some scotch had influenced it in some way as well. To be read in a rough and tumble old western cowboy drawl.