My email box is jammed regarding questions about my Renee Zellweger painting. Yes, I still have the original acrylic and gouache painting. I've had offers to sell it, but I just couldn't seem to part with it. No, I don't feel responsible for her altering her face. Yes, sure it's "mean", but my art project at the time was to illustrate gossip - and if you've ever read a celebrity gossip blog or flipped through the tabloids, you know it's not good natured banter and uplifting narratives. I hope that answers most the questions. Thanks for reading my silly blog!
As an avid Watcher of People, I enjoyed spending the summer painting some of the colorful cast of characters spotted during my street photography adventures. After work, I toss on a pair of dark sunglasses, grab my iPhone and chihuahua, and wander the streets to see who might catch my hungry eye. Above: She wearily trudged down Market Street wearing flip-flops paired with suntan colored support hose and a busted wig worn slightly askew. In my imagination, I named her Mildred. Medium: graphite on paper, digital paint.
If one happens to spot a bearded manboy man dressed as a Toddler Gigantus in the Mid-Market district (home to Twitter, Yelp and vast numbers of tech startups), it's highly likely that he is a "Techie". Techies are very controversial in San Francisco these days, but they don't bother me as I get a kick out of their carefully coordinated garanimal outfits usually topped off with a little matching hat and a cute backpack festooned with cartoon animals, dangling toys, and a solar charger for their iPhones. They can be spotted on Market Street as they toddle between Chipotle and their well-paid jobs at the hottest tech startups. Interestingly, the offices of many startups resemble sleek kindergartens and tree houses. Medium: digital painting
San Francisco's Chinatown buzzes with sensory overload during the Summer months. It is a bustling frenzy of people crowding sidewalks lined with stores full of overflowing tourist tat, produce stands, and restaurants featuring cooked ducks hanging by their necks in the window. The pungent smell of dried squid mingles with the sweetness of overripe fruit. Live toads flop sluggishly in filthy buckets and a fish cut in half still twitches atop a bed of melting crushed ice. Harried fishmongers yell angrily at curious tourists for taking photos of it all. One day I was walking through the neighborhood and noticed a very well-dressed man walking toward me. His smartly tailored, three-piece suit was decorated with a pageantry of ribbons, badges, and a red carnation boutonniere. A jet-black pompadoured toupee perched atop his head like a shining crown, which added to his overall air of distinction. Our eyes met as we crossed and I wanted to give him a little wink, but was too shy. Medium: graphite on paper, digital paint.
I attended the Art Market San Francisco opening night party a while back and as usual, did not notice any of the art. How could I when there are so many shiny people who themselves, are walking works of art? Above: He waltzed around like a proud peacock and was accompanied by an eldery woman who spilled her wine and giggled at everything he did. I thought to myself, "oh my god, that old lady is ME from the future." Medium; graphite in moleskin sketchbook, digital color.
The title of this one is simply, Rich Lady Foot. Medium: graphite in moleskine sketchbook, digital color.
At first, all I could see was a fiery red heat in the distance, but as it got closer, a seemingly befuddled, but exquisitely dressed Pixie emerged from the fire's glow. Medium: digital painting
When I came across the headline, "Kim Kardashian furious at South Park for referring to her as a Hobbit", the image you see above is what flashed in my mind. Wearing her most alluring outfit, the Kim Kardashian Hobbit wandered to the edge of The Shire and shamelessly flaunted her greatest asset in hopes of attracting attention. Drawn to the fiery glow cast upon her bare buttocks from the burning chasm dividing them, Gollum perched ravenously atop a Misty Mountain cliff, drooling, wild-eyed, insatiable. As each hair on the Hobbit's sizable derrier shimmered and shone like a golden beacon in the glow of the raging fire, Gollum became mesmerized and started croaking, "my preciousssssss, my preciousssssssss". (Medium: digital painting, early sketches and more details posted on my FB page)
ANNOUNCEMENT: This will be my last celebrity-inspired illustration for the year. I started Gallery of the Absurd in 2005 to showcase what I intended to be illustrations of contemporary folk tales inspired by the stories WE created and exchanged about tabloid celebrities rather than the celebrities themselves. I've had a great time illustrating the silly characters and outrageous narratives celebrity gossip tends to churn out, but it's time to move on and focus on fresh projects and inspirations for a while. I'll continue to post illustrations inspired by absurdity here on Gallery of the Absurd, just not celebrities. Of course, if someone wants to offer me a paying job creating celebrity gossip illustrations, then I'd certainly be interested! I'm also planning to work on a book proposal. I came so close to signing a book deal with Harper Collins/Regan Books back in 2007, but it fell through at the last minute due to a scandal. I'll keep trying though. Thanks for reading my blog. XO14
Hunched over the captive glow of his iPhone, he was oblivious to the fact the server had just delivered his order of "artisan toast". Artisan toast is the hot new food trend in San Francisco. Basically, it's just a slice of toasted bread made from "locally sourced organic ingredients" topped with various fancy sounding accompaniments such as "hand-churned, grass-fed Petaluma butter". It costs $6.95 a slice. Anyway, I also happened to take notice of the cartoon owl socks he was wearing under his snug-fitting black suit. Medium: graphite in sketchbook, digital paint.
I've not posted in a few months due to working long hours on a couple of commissioned illustrations that came my way. I was excited when Jane Wiedlin, legendary Go-Go's rock goddess and my latest Muse, commissioned me to create a portrait of her dogs based on the spooky twins from The Shining. I happened to meet her during a Bigfoot expedition deep in the Northern California redwoods last Spring. While we found not a trace of the elusive Sasquatch, we had a grand time wandering through dense forests at night with night vision goggles and professional investigators (including Bobo from TV, who brought McDonald's french fries as bait to lure Bigfoot, but ended up eating them himself because a man gets hungry out there in the wilderness). Anyway, these are the sort of antics I've been up to lately. New work coming soon and much thanks to Jane for the commission!
There was a photo shoot of Courtney and Doug taken a few months ago at a stripper club. She clings to the pole in a manner of what I'm guessing she considers "sexy poses". Doug stands nearby, grabbing and pawing at her young (?) flesh with his weather-beaten arms. Medium: graphite on paper, digital paint.