Drawings and the computer
Computer art is interesting. I usually don't like it due to how slick everything can get. In a way that is probably what people are reacting to when they say they don't like it. It usually lacks appropriate texture. It's tricky because you can't use a technique just to use it. An artist needs to recognize when it's the right time to push it or reel it in.
I'm using the computer to work out the colors, but if I was to do computer art as a final I would try to find what techniques the computer tools are stronger for. It's a different medium that mimics traditional medium as a starting point. It allows people who haven't developed traditional drawing and painting techniques to put out something in their head in an efficient manner. I think a lot of accomplished artists with traditional techniques resent people who have figured out how to get the computer to do what they want because it seems like a "cheat".
In a lot of cases it is do to it's inherent ability to look like polished art in half to a tenth of the time of traditional (physical) art takes. There are people who try and take that medium past merely copying what traditional art and those are the true pioneers pushing boundaries. I like seeing something pushed farther.
My approach to using the computer is as a sketch. I learn a little more each time I do these and maybe in the future I'll begin to push the computer techniques. But for now...
2016 and counting
Molly, my GF, had a great 2015 and topped it off with a successful book launch and tour of her book "Drawing Blood" from Harper Collins... no relation. In her mind she thought she was very difficult to live with this last year as she wrote her book and planned all the details around it to be a success. Truth, she wasn't any harder to live with than any other time! Well I wasn't going to argue as she wanted to treat me to a three day get-away to New Orleans... Come to think of it I guess she was a bitch!... and you made a mess in the studio! Is that worth at least a trip to Pittsburgh? HA!
We spent all three days going from food, to coffee shop, to more food, to a hookah lounge, to roaming all over the Bywater, French Quarter, and the Garden District. This was one of the doodles in my sketchpad at a coffee shop. We had the best time and I would even go so far as saying it was perfect. I love that girl!
I played around with it in Photo Shop a bit. I think it'll make a nice painting eventually.
This is what my paintings look like as I develop them. Sometimes I will have a phrase that comes to mind as I'm drawing and I will think that is the title. Then as I refine the image the title might not work for me and then it becomes something new. I'm not sure if I'll even paint any of these!
See? This one started as one thing in my head but once I scanned it, it now seems like I need to make an irregular shape for it. Like it needs to be taller than it is already.
I was drawing some of these in a bar and some in a coffee shop with my friend Travis. He did some really cool sketches in my spare sketch pad. I'll post them after I make sure he's OK with it.
I am usually aware that tubes and holes etc can be symbols of eroticism but this group has been a little more obvious. As a professional artist, I treat my models as valued private contractors. I don't make comments other than "you look over heated, can I get you some water or something to drink?". It's summer time and the humidity is a beast sometimes. And then there are the ambitious types that think nothing of running up 6 or more floors to my place instead of taking the elevator. My building has extra high ceilings on most of the floors! I try to make my models comfortable, and I respect them and what they do, so when I want to be more conscious of the erotic possibilities of the pose, I error to the side of professionalism. After they leave I draw from my drawings or photos they've let me take. This keeps me a little more detached from the erotic nature of the poses and my models.
I went to Brooklyn in the neighborhood Williamsburg to draw Colleen. I've worked with her a few times and is fun to draw. She has a site to announce where and when she's posing around the city and is trying to create a hub for the artists that she has worked with. The drawing session was held at Muchmores, a coffeehouse, with a small performance space, tables, couches and a stage. It had some murals on most of the walls. Outside the Giglio Feast was getting ready to go. Lots of really tasty looking street festival food that I almost never eat. It smelled great on the walk back to the subway. I like looking at all the festival rides and booths in the day time. They are like these weird sculptures. In the daytime before everything is open and running, they look abandoned and there should be some creepy psychotic clown waiting to jump out at you and squirt you with his trick flower lapel! The apocalypse of clown!
Sketches of ideas
Trying to advance this world I've loosely created. Or at least explore it. I like the idea of not showing a ground. Most of the figures I use are on steps or some sort of platform. Actual ground is still an ambiguous thing. I like how it gives the feeling that nothing is secure. Kind of a feeling that nothing is permanent. This one sort of hints at the ground.
I always liked reading about the Druids in Scotland. I took a trip to Scotland and drove all around from Glasgow to Inverness. The country side was amazing and I think I found myself stopping every few miles, er kilometers, to look at something. There were two stand outs. Three stand outs. One was a castle in the middle of a small lake that looked abandoned. It was magical and resembled some Pixar idea of an enchanted castle. Another was a rock cairn that was subtle, but just cool as shit. Just knowing how old it must have been was inspiring to me. And third was the Loch Ness monster as I almost hit as it froze on the road when it saw my headlights... Or maybe that was a squirrel? This was 20 some years ago so who knows.
The Druids had things called sacred groves. For some reason they would pick a bunch of trees that were growing on the top of a hill or some place that seemed significant for whatever reason and designate them a "sacred grove". Maybe it was for privacy so they could take a leak? I don't know. But pictures I've seen of them really do have some significance in a visual way. When I drive through Pennsylvania on route 80 I find the trees growing on top of a hill or mountain significant because the are surrounded by farmland. There is a certain intention for them to be there yet they still seem to naturally be there.
This painting for me is about looking internally to try and find that image that resonates with the part of my brain that wants to connect with nature or the universe in some way that you can't really put words to. And really, that is what a lot of my images are exploring.
Here is the evolution of the painting so far.
Opening at MF Gallery
213 Bond St.
JUNE 15, 6-10pm
Please look over the Prints page and get them all.
Have a good Easter/Passover or month.
Now is a good time to commission a portrait or purchase some physical art for the winter!
If you'd like to commission me for a painting... Portraits with my surreal aesthetic only. The face you have and my paint brushes! Estimated turnaround 3 months. Shorter will cost more. Contact me now.
Last Rites Gallery 325 W. 38th Street, between 8th & 9th Ave, NYC: (212) 529.0666
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