Saturday, December 24, 2011

In the Bleak Midwinter

This is O L D, but I still like it. It was done for a Christmas Day issue of a newspaper supplement magazine. I had in mind what the object in the sky was, but I suppose I shouldn't identify it and leave that up to the viewer.
Someone once asked me "What is the spirit of Christmas to you?" and I dragged this out, much to her confusion. It's really more about the mystery and magic of winter nights in general, specifically those this time of year, with all of the connotations the various Winter holidays bring.
Whatever your holiday of choice might be, I hope it's a good one.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Bosch in the round.

This past weekend we attended a holiday party at some friends' house. The lady of the house, artist Rosemary Meza, had a collection of toys and resin figurines, which were three dimensional interpretations of images from famous paintings. I found out where she got these figures and checked out the web site.

Among the most interesting figurines were those taken from Hieronymus Bosch's "The Garden of Earthly Delights" and "The Temptation of Saint Anthony". I also thought it was interesting that the subjects chosen were among the more horrific images in those paintings, the monsters and demons wreaking their own Boschian havoc on sinners and malcontents deemed unworthy of Paradise.

I found one of my favorite images from Bosch's work recast as a figurine and will one day get one of my very own. Of course it ended up being one of the more expensive pieces.

It's the "Tree Man", which always looked like an eggshell to me. In any case it's from the "Hell" side of "The Garden of Earthly Delights".

There was also a series of pieces based on Salvador Dali images. Dali was probably my favorite artist, followed by Bosch and M.C. Escher (who is represented by 3D versions of his "Tessellations" series), from my college days. One of the Dali pieces is from "Geopolitius Child Watching The Birth Of The New Man", which back then hung in poster form on my bedroom wall.
I think it's interesting that while the Dali pieces are from some of his most famous paintings, his signature image, the melting watches from "Persistence of Memory" aren't among them.

Anyway, these objects and others can be found at

Friday, December 9, 2011

Late bird

A student found a dead bird outside the classroom and brought it to class wrapped in a paper towel. She laid it out and proceeded to do several very nice drawings of it. So I decided to do a drawing of it, too (and I'm only showing mine).
It was poignant seeing the bird separated from its previous life and I hope in our different interpretations we depicted it with dignity.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Dugald Stermer

I'm sad to hear of the passing of Dugald Stermer, a great artist who was always passionate about his work and his profession. Although my encounters with him were limited, he was always generous with his time and hospitality.
At the 2005 San Francisco Illustrators Conference my wife Becky and I were fortunate to have dinner with Dugald and Brad Holland. Dugald was jovial and full of stories about mutual acquaintances. It was one of my favorite evenings.
His work can be seen here.