I'm in two gallery shows coming up. One just opened in LA at Gallery 1988. "Bob's Burgers" show. The theme was Bob's Burgers characters etc. open to interpretation. I didn't really know anything about the show. I had to brush up on it. If I had a TV I would probably watch this once in a while.
And the other group show I'll be participating in at Gallery 1988 is called "The Idiot Box". The theme is mostly television from the 90's... you know, the Idiot Box! As a little kid in the 70's, I don't remember my dad calling the television anything else but "the idiot box"! HA!
In the 90's I got hooked on The X Files. Throughout the seasons there was enough variety that I enjoyed it up until Mulder disappeared and the new guy showed up. Of course by the 2nd or 3rd season I wasn't buying Scully's skepticism, but I liked the characters by then. In this piece, I was playing around with a bunch of alien "folklore". Abductees claim missing time, triangle shaped crafts, naked on metal tables, aliens with big eyes operating or experimenting on them etc. And within the show, the ever increasing reliance on using cell phones to help move the plot along. Flip phones were the thing. I titled this one, "It's for you." The big obvious joke that refers to people having unnecessary surgery is Mulder and Scully were abducted and the aliens mixed up their heads when putting them back together since all humans look alike to aliens.
The Dare2Draw folks invited me to give a "pro tip" for their segment "Draw like a pro". I had 3 to 5 minutes to explain something. I chose hands because a lot of young people in art I come across openly say drawing hands is the hardest and they don't like doing it. Well drawing hands is very important to any figurative art. I knew I wasn't going to show anyone how to draw a hand in less than five minutes so my main message was practice. Draw that thing you find is hard. I said it but who knows if I taught it!
I didn't really intend to say so much about Dare2Draw, but I feel I need to be clear even in my side comments sometimes. What I really wanted to show here is the last cover I did for The Week Magazine featuring the Pope. Yeah THE Pope and his recent visit to New York city. I included this in with my presentation to D2D. There are a lot of hands in this one. Sometimes I have to make an illustration in a way I wouldn't do naturally. This is an example of one of those times. I had to change things so the title would be legible. I worked with Dan, the AD, to make sure the words would read and had to ruin the illusion of depth above the door and Pope by lightening everything. But I painted everything in anyway so I could work some things out in the paint.
Above is the way it printed.
This is mostly a raw scan. I darkened the area above the Pope clumsily in Photo Shop to give the idea I would have preferred to do. But it's sort of important to be able to read the headline, eh?
Posting about what I make is still a novelty to me. Here is where I show my age. Sit back and cringe. I developed as an artist in the 80's and 90's. Way before the internet and just before the idea that digital art could stand on it's own as a legitimately accepted technique. Fast forward a decade and I'm a bonafide freelance illustrator! I seemed to be getting calls left and right from magazines everywhere. Time mag. New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Sports Illustrated, and many others that unfortunately do not exist anymore.
All I had to do is work and meet my deadlines. I'd send out the occasional promo card or take an ad out in a book. Simple. The newer or as I like to call them "successful" artists are good at more than just drawing and painting. They can write, demonstrate, and connect with so many people on the web that they just seem to blow up!
Putting every line and thought you have on your website or blog is effortless to them, but not to me. So I labor over what I have and what it looks like and even more about what to say about it. I read too much Ginsburg, Kerouac, Dylan, and Morrison, to know how to write like a sane person! And THIS is why updating my blog here once or twice a week is still special to me.
This for the Houston Press last week. The story was about families arguing over who gets what from the dying relative. They sent me some reference from the Family Feud game show as a way to set up the look they were after. I was fascinated with the samples from the 70's and 80's. I had to give it that look!
Alas they didn't really want the 70's, and they wanted a less exaggerated look. So I sent them a second sketch that they liked better but said I could get a little less formal with the clothing and gestures. Maybe make the arguing siblings a little younger.
I was channeling my comic book days from the early 90's but with a little more of the wisdom I've accumulated over the years. This is about %90 paint and %10 digital. I would have liked to have thought about the painting in the back ground more, but I guess a tidal wave gets the point across?
As an aside. I just checked out the Sargent show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC this past Sunday and it was amazing! Highly recommend! He still got it!