Elephants Graveyard

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9×12 in. mixed media.

Well the Cookeville Comic Arts Festival at the Putnam Library had a pretty good turn out, especially for the first year. There was I believe 8 artist in attendance showing their talents in the fine art of comic illustration. Could have been more but a nice start to something I hope the library promotes again next year. Although I was manning my son’s table , he was too busy overseeing all the events, comic illustration is and always has been at my core…i really admire the works that were presented at this event…KUDOS Matt !

Ever wonder where those torn fishing nets end up, or what’s snagging them? In my dreams this is at least one answer… was thinking about another octopi piece and well, this happened, but i am sure there would be some lurking around…perfect place…and i am sure that a ship wreck is right behind this outcrop. Good story?…the thing about a ocean type setting is at least true…using the produce netting made the rest easy once they were installed. ..going to live with this for awhile and if it doesn’t feel totally finished…then i suspect i might see a octopi sneaking into the piece… ;-)

Technically this is a very complex effort…besides too many layers too remember ( about 1/2″ thick in places) I used red and black netting and tissue paper over much of the piece, and in some areas, the netting, is so far down you have to look hard to see it…didn’t want to darken the caves as i am sure they would be…the surface is really nice and coral in feel, i believe…might be more of scene/seascape than an abstract, but that wasn’t the initial goal. If i do come back and add sea-life there will be more than one octopi.

Life Beneath the Coconut Tree

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9×12 in. mixed media.

Doing abstracts can surprise you from time to time, especially when there isn’t any definitive idea about the subject matter. This is just such a piece for me. Once I added the browns to the work i couldn’t help but see island type scenes in my head…as most of you that read anything from me know…i like to spend time with a finished piece  and figure out its title… in this case i had several going on in my head well before i finished…not sure i liked the fact it influenced some of my artistic choices before i finished…but hey sometimes it is good to go with what you feel strongly about…and see where it takes you.

If I had a shrink I would imagine he might suggest a vacation to some Caribbean island…actually that isn’t a bad idea !!!

Coral Split

coralsplitW9×12 in. mixed media.

Doing ocean floor themed pieces with my Octopi pal is fun…and this one is no exception. The focus on most of these pieces is the coral and then the octopi…and as is with all of these so far an old wrecked ship lurking in the background…used to think I was going over the top with my color on the octopi, until i watched a PBS special…if anything I am understating the shocking bright neon colors these animals can produce.

Nothing deep to doing these, just pure enjoyment in the process and time spent.

Dermatological Wonder At 6 Fathoms

9×12 in. mixed media.  Let me start by saying thank you to everyone, I have hit a milestone I never imagined I would get to…1000 followers!!!!!! … I reached that early today, it is very humbling and at the same time extremely uplifting . THANK YOU ALL

The long winded titled piece was done like some of my bubble tree series, without the trees. I had a preconceived idea about goosebumps…thus the title. It has a different feel than the others like it…but I can sense being in the water for sure. Not many have seen this piece so I will let you guys and gals tell me what you think.dermatologicalwonderat6fathomsW

You Can Only Clean Fish Once

9×12 in. mixed media. Details on the lighter areas not showing very well, you will have to take my word on there is more to be seen. Used some of that 42 year old ink in getting my colors just right. Had a few on lookers thinking I was doing something with football laces or clocks…nice observation but can’t say I was on that path. Watercolor paper does such a nice job of taking my early layers before I start glazing over with finishes, inks, and acrylic. Not sure I have mentioned my process in naming pieces before…once I have completed a piece I spend some time with it and see what comes to mind…I have almost as much fun doing this as I do working on them. Not sure what my titles say about me as an artist but I do know it is enjoyable. 

Flour And Water Doesn’t Make A Peter Max

A 19×24 in. extremely mixed media. Before I get back to my current stuff I thought I might at least show one more, my first mixed media circa 1972. It was during a time when I was trying many different approaches to art and I personally liked Peter Max and the Beatles. (who didn’t at that time) This was about the time I changed majors from architecture to art education. It was also the first time I discovered tissue paper and recycling less liked art, of my own of course. This work uses flour, tissue paper, ink, pen, sand, paper, elmer’s, varnish, and papermate flairs. For being 40 years old it looks brand new, shining just it did then…can ya guess where the recycled art was useful?

 

Voyage Of The Cranes

Mixed media 9×12 in. Remember when I was talking in my Chaos In The Bay page about my first attempt of doing a sketch…well this is it. Stained glass without the glass! Actually I may try to do something equine with framing, why you ask? The initial layers of this were very brite and rich and after several coatings I managed to get to the shades you see now…however if you hold this up to a brite light those rich colors come thru…almost like a night day type thing…accident but maybe something to experiment on. By the way I am referring to the birds, ie… cranes.

BP Lied To Us

Very mixed media 9×12 in. This is a very confused piece, at times green (environmental) and at times just the opposite. The beach is green…used home made glue and for color would you believe color pencil shaving I have saved for months.  Now I couldn’t stay true and for the foreground I used marker, ink, and good old nasty solvent…I did have gloves on and preformed this experiment outside in fresh air.  Nice results but not sure I would do this again, messy, smelly, and my gloves weren’t in very good shape afterwards… kinda like working the beaches in the Gulf during the BP mess… Title seemed natural,at least for me.  The title and the piece poke fun at this mess, however I know it was anything but funny…so no offense, just art.

Hide N Seek

Mixed media 9×12 in.  My first in a series of octopus and ocean series, not as much factual as, colorful with a bit of whimsey. This was the piece I traded with a fellow artist at the ” Picasso Doesn’t Live Here art fair.”  The octopus has almost a pearly finished skin with multiple colors.  To contrast against it I used paint-sticks for the coral and the goofy fish (my version of a type of parrot fish).  Not sure if there is treasure around or not but we do have a shipwreck, anchor and oil.   Don’t ask about the magenta flow to the right it’s either a crack in the mantle or the remains of a missing tanker full of silly putty… or it might be just the right color to offset the octopus’s brite eyes. Regardless a very fun piece.

5 Shells By The Seashore

Mixed media 16×20 in. I had considered to divide this into 4 equal parts and then mount it with about 1/4 in. space between all parts with a dark background. However the outcry from my home grown support system convinced me to delay it for now.  This has a very nautical feel to which I find  very relaxing to look at. Technique wise I didn’t employee as many layers in this piece as I normally would, because it started working for me early on, and I couldn’t see the need. Subconsciously this comes from a long series of beach pictures/photos I took at Tybee Island.

Bath Night On Liberty Island

Mixed media 9×12. Had fun with this and did a little experimenting to boot. The spikes on liberty’s head were actually colored from the back side of the paper, as was the orange, and the sage outline on her body. The white was a thick layer of acrylic and gel medium, which I textured before it dried. Notice the Van Gogh type sky? I love that shape and those lines,  a lot of my earlier works were thick with it. Just remember even a statue gets a bath from time to time.

Chaos in the Bay

A 16×24 mixed media using lots of stuff. I had this sketched out on a scrap piece of paper and first tried this as a kind of stain glass effect, I liked it but not as much as this piece…I can feel the movement and can hear the sounds and if I close my eyes smell the salty air…OK I WENT TO FAR…but it is water proof just in case.

Coral Octopus Garden

Mixed media 9×12 acrylic, enamel paint, pen, marker, and ink. This is a little more complex than it looks…the kelp has slits cut following their profile and the octopus (which was drawn on a different sheet and cut out) is then woven into the drawing. The coral is multiple layers of paint and has a nice texture to it.  So far I have done three in this series Octopus/ocean-floor. A fellow artist has the first and we traded pieces, I would like to say I got ahead in that deal. (a very inside joke…check out David Pound )

Technicolor Woodie

A 9×12 mixed media. Never been on a cruise but my sea going daughter has twice. So after hearing all of her stories after the first time when she set sail the second time I made her promise to take a few dozen photos for me to use.  So based on a dull Caribbean driftwood pile my daughter shot while on a cruise I gave that driftwood pile some much needed Caribbean color.