Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Last picture..

..with the old cell phone camera. (well perhaps) I was planning on just keeping the old Motorola D&G Gold Razr I have had around, as it was a semi-decent 2.0 cell camera for use for 3 years now. (Plus it had this spiffy Star Trek communicator thing going on in the looks department.) Frankly, while both the Razr and the new Blackberry I just got are equipped with a 2.0 mpx camera, I still think it was better than my new cell camera's abilities quality-wise. (The Blackberry seems to produce really grainy and fuzzy shots) Last night, I was going to do a side by side comparison and see how each translated to the web blog however, right after this pic the Razr just simply died.

The D&G Razr/Motorola was always a little temperamental. In the past there would be times when the phone would appear to be 'dead' and pressing the power button would cause the panel to briefly light and then go out again completely. And even with the charger plugged in, it would not power up. Sometimes taking the battery out, popping it back in again and attempting recharging would help. But not so yesterday. I have heard of this same thing happening to many Razr owners, who have told me Motorolas simply just "die" or "go zombie." But I think it's some kind of internal circuit charging problem. Or else, when the battery is dead flat, the mains charger is rendered useless and can't hold the charge being processed by the electric outlet via the charger accessory. So, the internal charging circuitry will not switch on to allow it to take a charge from the mains charger, etc. A vicious circle and another wasted electronic device for the junk drawer.

Oh well. Good thing I just got a new phone with a camera but I haven't fully tested that one out just yet.

AFTERNOON UPDATE: Actually, I have just tested the BB out (see below) and the results are piss-poor truth be told. So, that's what the BB/Curve can do. Pretty dark, and if you lighten the exposure then the clarity is lost and it comes up too red and even more grainy. Not even sure what that purple streak could be.(??!!)

I have a feeling I am gonna miss this old Razr, (I was right) even though it over-exposed indoor shots and made them have this red cast. Still, I rather liked the effect. Hopefully I can fix it.I like having a mess of cameras to use for different results.

I realize that most cell phone cams are not the greatest, and that I was lucky with the razr. So the verdict is in: The BB is not good for pics, but it is still a nifty device in countless other ways.

C'est La Vie,


Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Full speed ahead..

Just a quick shot taken during a little pre-show shopping and prep over the weekend. Gotta love the Warhol quote, and I'm happy to show off the wooden frame I'm holding. What a find! It has a darling little brass key on it, and the frame itself seems to be made of a decent quality wood. (maybe stained oak?) I got it for under $5.oo -surprisingly. Nice when things happen like that.

After finally hunkering down and doing the proper research, I got myself a new phone plan and a new phone device. I chose a Blackberry. (Over an i-phone, no less - go figure. ) I'm happy with my choice. Now I feel a little bit more up to speed with technology. It's a pretty novel little communication and organizational tool for the price. A few bugs to work out synching it up to the Mac, but so far so good.

The last week has been pretty productive in terms of organization and gathering things for upcoming projects and also the October show. There was lots of pre-prep shopping and various fun mini-adventures over the weekend. (procuring blue PVC, religious medallions and communal wafers among other things.) A mix of work and play intertwined, which is always great to experience. However, along with keeping in-step with my goals and the big picture, some things still must change. There have been a few obstacles here and there to tackle in other areas, some which could effect my work and current workspace in a negative way. And so, this week my motto seems to be a mix of: "Damn the torpedoes - full speed ahead!".. and "Spit diamonds, but be graceful."

Which, with as polished as I like things to turn-out and as strong as I know I can be when necessary, I find the latter statement quite fitting for me to recount over and over. It's just a matter of clearing a path and then fitting all things in their proper place. Which, I intend to do to the best of my ability and as flawlessly as possible.

Shine on...


Monday, September 28, 2009

Upcoming show...

JUNC Gallery & Boutique
7 Deadly Sins - Group Show

2205 Fern St.

San Diego, CA

Opening night: October 3rd, 2009

So, what's your favourite sin? There's bound to be something for everyone in a show featuring a taste of all 7!
Come view a little artistically interpreted vision of the Cardinal Vices. Each on display and ready to be bared to all. Artwork from the hands, hearts and minds of a number of fine local Artists will be featured. (I've seen the roster and this promises to be one of the best group shows of the year.) I will have two or three pieces in the exhibit, and a few tricks up my sleeve as well for opening night attendees. What fun! Confession anyone?

Hope to see everyone there. And don't forget to dust off those old rosary beads!


Next group show: October 17th @ The Flame in San Diego, CA - Benefit for Marriage Equality Rights.

Friday, September 25, 2009

A little random Love..

from Chck-fil'a:

No modifications what-so-ever. Yes I swear, this was really the way may sandwich came.

Neat huh?


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Up for grabs this weekend...

In early 2008 after being featured in the Artrageous column of The Rage Monthly, I had somehow felt the urge to do something different or varied as to not pigeon-hole my work in any way. Part of me was feeling a little bored perhaps. So I became introspective enough to have gone through this period of near panicked "been there - done that." Thus, I was trying out all sorts of different techniques and applications in order to bring something new to the table. You know, just in case anyone was paying attention. I imagine at best, I was trying not only to challenge myself, but I was also trying to appeal to everyone in some way. (which is nearly impossible when you really think about it.)

I'm glad I went through this experimentation period because it is always wise to step up and try your hand at varied applications if you expect to grow. But honestly? This time it just helped to solidify for me that with the level of detail I like to achieve in a piece, I've got methods that work well in place already. In other words: "If it ain't broken - it doesn't need fixing." Improving on those methods and skills alone, is surely going to happen with time and age anyway. Why mess with it?

Personally, I like things to be smooth and polished, rather than over chunky or rough any day. Impasto and palette knife execution only was overall just too crude for me to work to my advantage. So in whatever I want to present to a viewer, the formulas I have been so comfortable and secure with are really in place for a reason.

Now in the process of all these trail and error ventures, was it fun? Well sure, why not? Yet I wound up with a bunch of paintings that can only be categorized as odds n' ends. Ones that didn't really seem to be theme-fitting or worthy of settling into any type of showing. Those I didn't like for one reason or another went into the void and most of the other pieces have all found homes. But this gal is the last of the bunch. The title is "Don't Do Anything I Wouldn't Do." and I'm going to say medium used here can best be described as the 'ol impasto chunk-in-the-trunk effect.

The piece is kind of a take on the movies of the 40's. How in all the old classics damn near everyone chain-smoked throughout scenes, and somehow we were expected to believe they would still look (or maybe even smell?) glamourous and remain the picture of perfect health. So much so, that people wanted to know just what Joan and Bette's brands were. And to be sure, Lucky Strike and Chesterfield made clear the public knew exactly. Gotta love American marketing.

The raised texture was a little hard for the scanner to capture, and I had to adjust the contrast to hide some of the shadows cast from the thick impasto mixture. Note* Viewing on the web shows more red than is actually present in the dress.It's really more of a rose pink than red.

Detail scan of painting (click on image)

2008- Acrylic impasto on premier studio grade canvas. The size is 12 x 16. (unframed) She will be at LeStat's just in time for the annual Adams Avenue Street Fair and Music Festival this weekend. Take her home for a song.


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Something olde...

The sketchbooks pulled from storage in the early Spring have been yielding some pretty fun (albeit antiquated) pieces of ephemera. I've been scanning in a select few here and there. A dragon done in (egads) 1986 while working at Pearl Art & Craft. I would have been that big-haired chick hiding behind the counter doodling if you missed me.

It sort of cracks me up how the old cliche is true, that of young Artists crowding a scene with detail to make due for other missing design elements in a drawing. Or else, being guilty of over-emulating their Artistic influences. (Duh kid, obvious Roger Dean influence here.) However, I still dig the curve and styling of the wings enough to post this today.


Monday, September 14, 2009

My desert kingdom for a Yuengling porter.

I got to thinking about Philadelphia and it's rich selection of eateries today. And since I'll be headed back to N.J. for a visit in a few months, it made me wonder if Saint Jacks pub is still around? Then that made me want a Yuengling. (which is the only beer I'll even bother to drink.) And since you can't get it out here in C.A. this was a mighty hankering I had to pin down hard. So instead, I thought about this great Irish Bar and restaurant in Rittenhouse Square called The Bards, that had Quizzo tournaments and made this excellent Guiness beef stew. And now, after listening to this tune, I decided I'd be nuts not to head off to dinner at my neighborhood pub for a minor substitution of some kind. Sometimes you just gotta go with what your brain tells you that you yearn for or else!



Music Playlist at

Sunday, September 13, 2009

The cycle of things.

“It is told that Buddha, going out to look on life, was greatly daunted by death. ‘They all eat one another!’ he cried, and called it evil. This process I examined, changed with the verb, said, ‘They all feed one another,’ and called it good. Death? Why this fuss about death? Use your imagination, try to visualize a world without death. The first form of life would be here yet, miles deep by this time, and nothing else; a static world. If birth is allowed, without death, the resulting mass would leave death as a blessed alternative. Death is the essential condition of life, not an evil. ”

– from page 40 of The Living of Charlotte Perkins Gilman, the posthumously published 1935 autobiography of Charlotte Perkins Gilman, author and lecturer. She was a novelist and lecturer for social reform, although I believe she was often so heavily misrepresented, that her accomplishments as a woman writer of her day are now considered to be that of a utopian feminists'. This indeed, is a label that should now serve to only pigeon-hole her forever as an early feminist for future generations to come, instead of recalling her as a great novelist of her era.

I was doing a lot of thinking about patterns and cycles today after talking with a girlfriend of mine this morning. We were kind of contemplating: How the hell did we end up here, holding the shitty end of the stick? After looking back and basically seeing that we have each in our own ways been strong and steadfast in trying to help, encourage or heal others we meet along our path in life, it does seem rather unfair. "Who can you believe and why keep giving? Good question. We are both in many ways gifted and are now feeling drained, or I suppose tired after dispensing so freely with the gifts all this time. Perhaps on the verge of jaded. Interestingly enough, about a week prior I had been having similar thoughts myself when examining my own station in life at the present moment. Ironically, we had both come to ask the same (perhaps unanswerable) question in this time of our faltering strength - "What did I do wrong?" My friend had in recent months comforted me greatly at a time when I found myself saying "My horns are hanging heavy on my shoulders." and I really wished I could offer my fellow ram more comfort in return.

So I felt a bit useless today in offering up that the only thing I had come to realize when feeling this way myself recently, was that this is merely some sort of test in life for me. (and now maybe for her too.) The sadness is almost a period of mourning. And urged her not to resort to the easy path of complacency for ourselves, or even fall to jaded bitterness and mistrust toward others. A renewing cycle is about to begin. And a change is on the horizon. Recognizing the signs and symbols along the way without ignoring them, and staying good or remaining strong is required. And having a great deal of faith in ourselves would indeed allow us to have restored faith in others too. This is merely part of the preparation. And that whatever our place in the universe at the present, that soon enough something better is surely manifesting itself for us both. As much I can be wary of people and remaining trusting, I said that I'm hopeful and welcoming of change enough to pass such a test, because I am not afraid..and I'll keep on being a strong person for myself and others. Maybe it's just the surroundings that need changing, but somethings gotta die off first. It shouldn't be our good nature that has to succumb.

During my contemplation, I had come across the Charlotte Perkins Gilman excerpt, copied down in an old sketchbook of mine. I found it helpful at the time.

This excerpt so perfectly illustrates man's fears. Not only a fear of death in the sense of the physical, but also the fear of change - or death of the old ways in which we have or had been living. When unfulfilled we want happiness but fear the change necessary to get there. I've oft time felt that for one reason or another and either by my own hand, some other greedy individual's, or else the hand of fate itself, that my cycles have been abruptly interrupted throughout my lifetime. And I wonder now why I was so disappointed that nothing good was born of that. Anytime I have resisted a change for the sake of someone else's feelings or wishes, I have always regretted it later and had to play catch up. My Mother always says: "You cannot skip any one cycle of your life - or you will be forced to repeat it." and she's right as rain.

There is no beginning of a cycle without the ending of another, and if avoided, maybe because of our own fear of an ending to that routine we've become so accustomed to, then the cycle is resisted. And thus, we preserve nothing. All is left to stagnate and everything else that is left to remain by unnatural means, is merely preserved existence. It no longer naturally flows or exists and lives but is only suspended in a constant state. One we might still wander through - none for the better, or worse without first facing our fears, and accepting/allowing change to occur. If we don't, then that's not enlightened living, or happiness even. That's just existing.

If you really want to live fully, you just need to be strong, accept change and keep going with the flow of the cycles until there is a harmonious rhythm you can follow. Like the progression of song. Then the next cycling change will just seem natural.


Image: Enich Torres. Cover art for HM - Vol.7 - No. 6 September 1983 issue

Saturday, September 12, 2009

A quick one..

Some impromptu fun shot in Hillcrest recently with my lovely friend (and fine Performance Artist) Helaine.
Busy working today but wanted to share,


Friday, September 11, 2009

2001 my view of the day in C.A.

Amid the utterly indescribable feelings, there was such a homesick sense of detachment that I was feeling in CA on 9/11. Not to mention the deafening silence and weighted frustration of not being able to reach my family and some of friends in NJ, NY, and PA. Fortunately, I had this view which helped to keep me sane since I, like so many really couldn't do much else but wait it out. The strange lack of sound in the sky was so eerie. The only exceptions were the sounds of desert wildlife in the distant canyon and a military jet that periodically 'patrolled' the coast. This fighter jet would soar past the canyon and the sound waves would crash off and tumble into layers of broken echoes. I had counted the cycle of three times every hour for this until finally it just became white noise. I just kept thinking that I should be home, it was my nature to have felt a greater connection to it than a non-East Coaster, yet alone the daughter of a New Yorker. I thought of the skyline, it's sudden change and my father always pointing it out to me whenever we entered the city from N.J. How I'd never see it the same way ever again.No one would. I began imagining some of the trips I'd never taken back when I had the chance. I thought of all those poor souls who literally never knew what hit them.

All-in-all, I am pretty much lamenting over nothing of my own personal loss here, just the connection to home itself, and how I was so disconnected and far away. I had soon after been able to get through on the phone lines, and within a few days I had learned that all my people were okay. I am so much luckier than so many others were that day. Really made me count my blessings. It was one of those defining (ex: Where were you when Kennedy got shot?) kind of days for the US. And being too young to have known that day in history, I knew this would be my Generations designated day.

There was the utter shock and the futility of the "why?" Recalling back to when my Aunt worked there in the first WTC attempt in 1993. I honestly couldn't believe something like that could happen again. And then, there was the anger..oh yeah, don't get me started on that. I kept thinking: "Such a tragic and utterly senseless event!" and yet it was so clearly foreboding at the same time that it seemed suspiciously purposeful and so totally evil. Look at us now, counting all the questions that still remain, and struggling with all the privacy rights we have lost. All as a result of the Patriot Act being drawn up all hari-kari-quick for our 'protection.' How about the state of our current US economy, huh?

This one of the purple morning glory was shot just a month earlier in 2001, but I wanted to include it's bright and hopeful little face anyway. I am so thankful that I at least had some of the plants I'd grown earlier in the year which were from the heirloom seeds of my parents backyard garden. It was a little piece of the East to keep me comforted.

Le Sigh,


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Upcoming ART SHOW

Junc Boutique & Gallery group show "7 Deadly Sins". Opening night will be Sat., Oct 3rd, 6-10pm, during the Fall South Park Walk-about. Hosted and arranged by Artist/ curator Jasmine Worth

The theme is: The Seven Deadly Sins, also known as the Capital Vices or Cardinal Sins, and is a classification of the most objectionable vices. One which has been used since early Christian times to educate and instruct followers concerning (immoral) fallen man's tendency to sin. It consists of "Lust", "Gluttony", "Greed", "Sloth", "Wrath", "Envy", and "Pride."
(..more info to come in future posts.)

I will have 2 if not 3 original pieces in the show. Prints are a possibility, but it depends on if the house mark up is too high to produce a profit from print sales. Other Artists participating in the exhibtion TBA. I do know the mighty Kim "Riot" Schwenk is on the bill, as she gave me the heads up on this show back in the Summer. (Thanks Kim.) Please check her work out as well at the show. Hope everyone can make it out for a fun night of visual sin under the palms.

You know what they say, be there or be be *antediluvian,


( * - "Antediluvian" is sometimes used figuratively to refer to anything of great age and/or outmoded; H. P. Lovecraft was particularly fond of the term, using it frequently in his horror stories.)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Inspiration from the Peej..

I am always enchanted by the magic of PJ Harvey, and have been increasingly impressed with her body of work over time. I have been listening to her since about 1992 or 93, and because I do play so much of her music in the background while I work, it's only natural I may post quite a bit about her in my art blog. I just find her so inspiring. So much so, that more than once she's crossed into my pieces. I did a series of portrait studies on her in 2005 which I was rather pleased with. My favourites were those I'd completed from her self-proclaimed "Joan Crawford on Acid" era. Such an insane visual stage persona going on there! One which she adopted for the theatrics of the 1995/96 tours. I actually couldn't bear to part with the piece shown here in this photo, and nor will I until I am offcially "over-it" which hasn't happened just yet.

I have always appreciated the haunting quality and dramatic power of this song ("Shame"). But when going beyond the vocal track on CD and viewing it live, it takes on a new dimension. I've seen this performed on tour live, and viewed many clips of it, but I find I am entranced by this UK tele show performance in particular. You can almost see the song in her eyes. (well what you can see of them through her veil of fringed bangs, anyway.) Her ability to touch base on such a painful and common human topic with such a sense of forlorn grace and detachment simply astounds me. Oh, and to get past the raw emotion of a piece and have the control and execution needed to sing well on stage is a feat in itself which I can attest to. But to do so in such a manner that is still so emotive and passionate! It shows not only her prowess as a singer, but compliments the great storytelling aspect of her writing and music so flawlessly. She starts off so direct. Expressing the desire of her character in the story. Haunted, raw, and torn but still cool and's all a weensy bit reminiscent of the way Nico often delivered a piece, expressing a tender subject in such a memorable way without the sappiness-factor seeping in. (And I love Nico, so that's some pretty high praise.) However with PJ, admittedly there's more movement and action for the live delivery of a song.

"We were as green as grass" splendidly illustrated to begin her introduction of the character in the context of the song's overall story. Now that's some simple but effective word-smithing action indeed. And then, about a minute and a half in, after telling of the impact of this attempted love, the passionate delivery picks up and the parcel of regret really starts to open. Unveiling itself to the listener as she recalls her attempts, protests and failures of the whole sordid affair. Proclaiming "I'd jump for you into the fire..I'd jump for you into the flame.." uh, wow. Who doesn't want mutual love and devotion of that instense caliber? (Then again, is there any other kind of devotion permissible in my book?) The entire progression of the song is now approaching it's ending, as she does the bigger/better person in a situation gone afoul, she takes the blame. And after admonishing the other party, still goes forward with her life in a very proper English moral-to-the-story type of ending.

Excellent composition with excellent delivery. But for me, it's the hand gesture at the end that cinches it. Admittedly, she does clap to keep her time/beat and place throughout the song, but here It seems to complete the arc of the entire story so well. It's as if she's burned but still salvageable - and has learned her lessons well. And now, smarter and all the wiser for it, she wipes her hands clean of the whole ordeal and moves on. Always amazed by the honesty in her art, and the direct yet sublime delivery of her performances when they attain this level of polish.

I cite her as a comfort, inspiration, motivator, and muse quite often, and this is something that should always be celebrated and given thanks for in life. Whether it's written from her own true or personal experience or not? Who can say? (we'll never know with the ever-coy and mysterious PJ) It's just when (and/or if in this case) another human dispenses of their experiences or gifts so honestly and selflessly, and then makes the conscious effort to share them with the world via their Art? It truly moves mountains in me. In my opinion, it almost raises them to a higher level of consciousness among mere mortals for being brave and courageous enough to bear their soul.

Cheers to the Peej and enjoy.


Saturday, September 5, 2009

Lions, Tigers and Bears..

After a few days of introspection, and some contemplation under last night's lovely full moon I snapped this shot. I'd decided that spending part of Friday evening and keeping lunch plans for today with some of my favourite San Diego people was in order. Just to stop and smell the roses a bit, and enjoy the company of those closest to me in CA really helped re-charge my batteries. I've realized - eeek - on this Labor Day weekend anniversary of my 9th year here, that of the friends I have made while in CA, despite being of all varied ages, each have indeed proven to be the most important relationships I've made since moving from N.J.
I have made wise choices and am glad to have kept these people close at hand.

After Rose soda and La Noia at Bassam's with Helaine last night, it's lunch at Brian's diner with Ted and his lovely girlfriend Shadow today, and later on I'll catch up with my pal Randali in the evening for coffee and a stroll. Some friends that have moved out of State (my dear Katharine, now in the Mountains of TN) and Krista (TX) had a phone call "connection" thing going on with me today too. These two have actually witnessed me covered in mud, pounding the ground and screaming "There is NO GOD!!" in the middle of my Garden in Del Mar once. ( landscrapers defiled it with a blocked irrigation system - one that Kit and I accidentally punctured when removing a hibiscus bush to transport.) Imagine this screaming, amid geysers of mud/flower soup that had erupted everywhere and that's the scene pretty much. It takes real friends to stand beside you during such moments of madness, laugh with you, and make you see you are still loved despite the stormy weather.

I'll be getting back to the artwork on Sunday when my head is a bit more clear. I have had some great sparks and ideas sketched out lately for projects, but the execution of them has been the REAL difficult tiger to tame. I know it's good to walk away sometimes, but I always have a guilt complex with it if I do. It's seems as if should you neglect your art for just one day, it can be such a bitch on the back-swing.T hat's when the creative process may neglect (or evade) you entirely for two or more days. Which means you have to take more time to build up the momentum again. Or it might mean, once you do get back to the table that you will just run crashing out of the gate like a boomerang on return momentum. Hard to say.

Speaking of such things as boomerangs, here comes that damned Mercury retrograde AGAIN. Which explains why I have been so anxious, impatient and pushy the last week with myself and others. Well, at least I am aware of it this time around in 2009, and I'm one ready Gemini/Ram. The 18th could be a rough, but necessary point so I am trying to prepare for that. And by the 29th this should all be headed back to the course of the intended path for me, or at least I'll know I'm on my way. It is in Libra this time around, and also in Virgo. While I do have a Libra/Dragon in the household too, I know it will all still work out just the way it is supposed to. "

"So the stars favour this turn, as indeed do the planets."

Damn..stars igniting indeed. I wasn't joking.

Anyway, I was recalling also this weekend, the very last things I did before I took my cross-country trek out here. One of them was getting a farewell Philly cheese steak at Pat's on the way to the interstate, and another was taking a trip to Inferno for some new earrings and then to Garland of Letters Bookstore on South Street in Philadelphia. This visit was a little bit before my departure day on August 22nd, 2000 and I went to stock up on supplies. Garland of Letters is known for having an awesome selection of books but as well, they always had a varied array of jewelry, incense, oils, and candles too. Believe it or not, I bought so much that day, because I knew if I did and I squirreled them away just-so, they would last.

This has been my favourite bookstore haunt since the early 90's.I cannot tell you how many hours I spent there feeding my brain and my soul. It was a spiritual discovery point for me with an address attached in many ways. I always made it a point to admire the handsome bronze lion at the entrance, give him a pat on his head and stroke his mane. I found a lovely pic of him online the other day, all dressed up to celebrate the onset of Spring. (see below) They always decorate him accordingly throughout the year and it's seasons. I recall when I left, (despite being the public germ freak I am) I kissed the top of his head for luck before my journey out West.

The picture prompted me to dig up last of my stash from the closet and enjoy. Even when I was little, lions always have always been symbolic of safety and strength to me, and a feeling of protection. Maybe it's "A Lion Witch, Wardrobe" related thing, or maybe it's because since I used to carry a stuffed one around as a tyke. I even held a real lion cub when I was eleven and I never forgot the grand memory of that. I can still smile like a child, just to think about it now. Sometimes quite by chance, you find comfort or re-enforcement exactly where, and when you need it most.

There in the box amid all the remaining candles and oils, were an old earthen-ware dragon oil lamp, a bag of incense and other oddly placed goodies: like a box of Cape May diamonds (unpolished), along with the receipt for that shopping trip. And on it I had hastily penned a note to the store's manager in black ink, over the purple printed text: "Faith - please send the following.." I did this per her instructions, so I could just photocopy whatever was purchased that day and send it off to to her attention as needed for my future orders to go out to CA. ( In 2000, they did not have an online store service.) And in the bottom of box also was an AIRS brochure from 1994, with gorgeous product illustrations by ArtistAmber Faith.

Lastly, was this pic of me from October 2000, which was my first Fall out here. So funny, some of my West coast family had never met me before, or else had only known me as a small child. So the first tatse of this meeting, or re-union with me outside of photos was at a Halloween dress-up party. Talk about bizzarre. My Aunt is very a loving old NY gal, and she was very welcoming but I didn't feel terribly 'related' to all the rest of them. My one cousin Stewart said to me: "Hey, this is pretty much normal dress for you isn't it, huh?" - and I cracked up. Hey, he got it, and at least he was kosher about it.

Goodness, where does the time go? No matter, the future is bright and the present is most important for me to focus on currently.


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Image for new business cards and web page in progress.

Ok, it was about time to long overdue for an update of the image on my cards. So about a little over 2 and a half weeks ago I took a few self-portrait photos for reference. I usually frown on using exact photo refs for most of my illustrations, but since it is an image of me, on a card designed for me, and shot by me in an attempt to represent my own work, it seems permissible. Or at least I am reasoning it to be excusable enough to allow. Sure, like the new blog avatar I could have gone the partial photoshop filter-route, but I said: "Bah! - Nuts to that." Although I am sure someone I hand my card to in this day and age, will automatically think it is done like that anyway. Le sigh, perhaps we are becoming assimilated in some way and we are pre-borg status. I'm sure a portion of the planet went into shock when gmail was down the better part of the day.No access to email or blogging. Gee, well I figured I was going to be O.K. since I lived through the 70's, 80's and part of the 90's without it just fine.

Anyway, I must admit that the revamp was held back mostly as I was under the influence of my own sense of swoon. After getting a fine compliment from the great Bernie Wrightston at CCI/SDCC (in July 2008) on my Bats n' Blue card, I held back from the annual update design that should have been due out by last Summer. Change is good. Time to get over it now.

First, I made a photographic transfer via a light box sketch and transferred it on to ribbed Canson pastel paper in graphite. Then washed it out with titanium white acrylic paint. Second shot shows where later I used India ink and a new sumie-e brush I got in San Francisco over it all. There's a handful of mixed media goodies that went over the wash. (Sakura ink pen. Sharpie, coloured pencils, graphite, and aqua-monolith colour pigment sticks.)

For this time around I'm considering neutral shades with some spots of colour, over the former bold blue of the old card but nothings finalized yet. Still playing around with colour choices. (there's a sepia toned one on pastel paper floating around here somplace as well.) The urge to use color is always open to debate with me. Often it's mood. I'd say it's mostly a yippie-skippie one due to the new toys I bought last week. These are the CRETACOLOR Aqua MONOLITH pigment color and sticks and I like them quite a bit. They are the ones shown in the black pouch in the picture, and 2 white ones can be seen on the table.

Text from the set:
Derived from the Greek “monos” (sole) and “chroma” (color). Meaning painting and drawing with just one color in different shades. The best known artworks of the modern monochrome trend are the ones of Yves Klein (1928 – 1962). That artist called himself “Yves le Monochrome”.

I would say check them out, the price is about $2.50-3.00 per or you can buy sets for a better deal under $20.00
Pros- excellent pigment concentration and smooth flow for shading. Nice range of colour choices. Opaque coverage is possible if needed.
Cons- Round shape means they 'roll-away' and these break like fragile chalk. The dust/residue created shading large areas builds up quick. Thus, it needs to be blown off the page quite frequently.Shapening is needed frequently. (mildly irritating- but plausible.)

I have a few of these self-portraits that I did for my cards, but this one seems best suited so far.Go figure, it was the first out of the gate. Funny how that happens, like instinct sometimes. Also, I was admittedly distracted most of this past weekend. No A/C and the 3 day heat wave in San Diego killed my energy level a bit. Today the temperature let-up a bit, and I made good progress with a few studies.