Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Caricatures - Let's try it again...

I found this video to be a unique insight into the mind of a character artist. I always felt I wasn't very good at it so I never really developed it, but this video makes me want to give it another go...

Monday, June 2, 2014

My first favorite artist is dead

When I was about thirteen, I found out that I loved art and image making it was going to be a big deal for me. For the first time in my young life, I a felt direction. I'd think to myself, "I could do this forever". But first... I needed a favorite artist, right. It doesn't matter as an adult, but as a kid it helps you figure out where you stand in life and then you can grow from there.  I was a thirteen year old and I needed a favorite artist to guide my way.

I had heard about Leonardo Da Vinci and Michelangelo. However, they were a little too flowery for me and what's with all of that religion? I was also told about this Pablo Picasso guy, but to say " I don't get it" was far too much work for me at the time. Why would I want to take the time to learn about why I should like it. I needed something to stop me in my tracks.  I was a secular American teenage boy and I needed someone special. It was about this time, that my cousin told me about H.R. Giger.

At this time, there was no internet to show me what H.R. Giger's work looked like or how big or small it was. He could only described the work to me. He told me about the figures melded with machines and used this new art making tool called an "airbrush" to make realistic machine people. There was nothing else that needed to be said. I was on board with this artist, sight-unseen and I hadn't even seen his design work on Alien yet.

The suggested volume was called H.R.Giger's Biomechanics. Only available through special order, I was going to have to wait 6-8 weeks to satisfy my curiosity and it took the full 8 weeks to get it. I paid for it with the first check I ever wrote (about $80). This was a big deal. Under the memo portion of the check I wrote 'H.R. Giger', because I thought that was what was done for this kind of thing.

When it arrived I was stunned. The book was huge and to this very day it still refuses to fit on any bookshelf. I really remember being fascinated by the cover but also feeling anxiety about the expense of the book and even the content. I remember thinking to myself after bringing it home, "what have I done?"

That's not creative embellishment. I really was slightly frightened of what was inside. I had never seen art so dark (figuratively and literally), sexual, demonic, technical, illustrative, and just crazy.  It was everything a socially awkward teenage boy could ask for. It was inspiring, frightening, funny, and thought provoking. The images in this book slapped my brain and could not be unseen. I was a changed boy.

I especially enjoyed showing this book to friends and even family to see they're perplexed looks as they struggled to understand it. I didn't totally understand it, but I came to find that understanding is not a prerequisite for art. What I learned from his work is that art can exist to thrill and that is all. It shouldn't have to explain 'why is it this way?', 'how can it be?' or even the dreaded 'I don't get it'. 

Maybe there's nothing to get and maybe there's a deep analogy of humanity. In the end it doesn't matter. There was a shock to my system the day I brought that book home. I was forever changed when I saw that insane man's imagery. I never actually ever wanted to meet H.R. Giger in person, but his work stuck with me as the first artist to ever become "my favorite".

Thanks, H.R.

H.R. Giger

Monday, April 28, 2014

Jodorowsky's Dune: Review

It's not very often a movie comes along and inspires you while it breaks your heart all along the way. Jodorowsky's Dune did this to me. The entire experience was sitting and watching a crazed and wonderful madman talk about being ambitious. That's really what this movie is about. It's about being crazy enough to try to do something ambitious.

Alejandro Jodorowsky is the type of filmmaker who's a product of psychedelic romanticism... not that there's anything wrong with that. You don't need to be on any drug to appreciate that this chilean-french artist  as he relishes in taking the road less travelled.

But really, what is this movie about?

It's a documentary about the time he tried to make a movie adaptation of the cult sci-fi book DUNE by Frank Herbert... But it's about so much more!!!

To abbreviate... DUNE is a cornerstone of literary sic-fi, that explores religion and politics entangled in galactic drug-trade. Not your typical Sci-fi book. Luckily, Jodorowsky is not your typical film maker.

In the early to mid-1970's, this crazy-person tried to make something amazing. He assembled an artistic collective that included performances from Orson Welles, Mick Jagger, Salvador Dali and blend it with a soundtrack supported by Pink Floyd, then visualize it through the artistic talents of H.R. Giger, Jean Giraud (Moebius), Chris Foss, Dan O'Bannon-

Basically, all the pillars of my artistic education.

Unfortunately the film was never made. This documentary is the making and unmaking of something special by a very ambitious man. I watched in pained excitement as he (and others involved in the project) retell this story of "the one that got away". I realized that that is what a lot of ambition and inspiration is.

To go forth and create regardless of everything.

This is a movie about being fearless. Doubt never seems to even occur to anyone involved. They just gather together, look at the plan, and said "Yes".

I think you should see this movie.

Friday, April 4, 2014

A Return

Sometimes we lose touch with expression and I am certainly guilty of this. I want to draw you all back in with the promise of a new website (under construction), new work (in process), and a Sci-Fi Fantasy novel (forever ongoing). The important thing is that I have not stopped creating. Side-tracked YES, but not stopped.

The website is forthcoming and it's only the beginning.


See you soon.

Monday, March 19, 2012

More Digital Painting

I've been in the mood for some more digital painting.

The "Red Woman" came from a headdress I had a dream about...

The "Black Dog" reminds me of a dog I used to know.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Atari iPod dock

Hi Everyone,
I recently put some tech knowledge to some use by creating an Ipod dock with some unique features to it. I'll take you through some of the steps to how I made it.

Firstly, I had my old Atari from way back. I didn't play it any more and it was really just collecting dust. I knew there was something creative I could do with it, so the time had come to get my hands dirty.

I've found that expression often involves taking some foundation of your development and manipulating it. That's where this beauty came in... Unfortunately, my Atari was in bad shape and so I went to to cleaning it up and gutting the insides to make way for its resurrection.

It was easy enough to get inside and take out the major components and really discover what kind of technology kept me entertained as a kid. I love seeing the internal components of something as definitive as the Atari. I was actually quite surprised at how solidly this thing was built.

Then it was time to start cutting. Of course there was some hesitation and a bit of fear, but as an artist, every work I make is another step at loosing my fear. GO FOR IT!!!

I realized early on that what was actually the back of the Atari would work best as the front of the dock. The angles seemed awkward, but I was determined to make it work.

I would be using the cartridge slot as the dock for the ipod, but I actually wanted the MP3 player to be sitting inside of an old cartridge. Of course, more modification was necessary. I got a ipod cradle with and audio output jack (this was important) from Amazon and with some handy work, set it inside my cartridge of "Breakout".

For the speaker I used an x-Mini (from Amazon, about $15.00). It has great output in a small size.
Then hooked it up with an Apollo Jammer from www.elementalled.com. It's not available yet but I was fortunate enough to get a chance to play with it. It's a color controller for RGB lights that responds to audio signal and was really the inspiration for this whole project.

I don't have the price for it yet, but keep an eye out for it!

Then it all got put inside the Atari case with some fancy color changing lights.

And when it all came together....

I hope this little project inspired you.
Thanks for reading.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Two Of A Kind

I have this two headed beast on showcase at Periscope Cellars for the first annual "Small Works" show going on now till the end of December. Check it out at our winter bazaar on December 11th 2010 11am- 5pm.