Saturday, December 24, 2005

Illustration Friday: Holiday

Maybe I won't even begin to try to explain how my thinking ended up here when coming up with this little Christmas Eve game. I just know that when I saw the topic for this week, I decided I wasn't gonna risk Pat Robertson's wrath by doing some politically correct version of Merry Christmas. So, I went totally some other way. I don't know why.

I was just gonna put 'Happy...' above the two caricatures, but then I realized that neither Doc Holiday or Billie Holiday had particularly happy lives. Doc died of TB when he was 35. (Side note: do we all agree that Val Kilmer has done the best Hollywood version of this western legend?) Billie died when she was 44. She enjoyed success as a singer, but she went through some very rough times: raped at a young age, discrimination, and substance abuse.

Anyway, may everyone have a truly wonderful week, whatever belief (or non-) that you have. Go to my other blog for a more conventional seasonal greeting.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Illustration Friday: Imagine

I have a friend I've never seen.
He hides his head inside a dream.

Someone should call him and see
If he can come out.

Try to lose the down that he's found.

-Neil Young, "Only Love Can Break Your Heart," 1970

Early Friday morning I checked Illustration Friday and found that "Imagine" was the topic for the week. I had a five-hour drive ahead of me, and I loaded up a bunch of CDs for the road trip to pick up my son at college. During the drive I would dwell now and then on the topic and how to visualize it. Nothing good was coming to mind.

But it was shortly after I popped in Neil Young's After the Gold Rush (during the third song, actually), that one of his lyrics painted a picture for me. I departed from the lost love aspect of the words and started thinking about this friend hidden in a dream; an allegory for one's imagination. Something that has to break free from what is and become what might be.

I think Illustration Friday is a wonderful outlet for 400-500 folks and their imaginings every week. It's a great place to share and be inspired by others.

What I imagined the illustration would shape itself into -- for the piece itself takes over sometime during creation, and the artist just hangs on for the ride -- was slightly different from what ended up here, but I'll go with it. May we all nourish our imaginations. Peace to everyone.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Illustration Friday: Surprise

Four and twenty blackbirds baked in a pie was considered a delicacy at one time, I guess... just not baked live, as in the nursery rhyme. It would be a surprise I'd just as soon not experience. As a little boy in the 1910s, however, my father would provide his great-grandmother blackbirds for pies. Don't mean to upset anyone; it's just a fact that people used to eat that stuff. Maybe they still do somewhere. Hope I haven't offended anyone who's including this in their menu tonight.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Illustration Friday: Blue

Sat and thought about the topic 'blue' for quite awhile. It was my wife who suggested that I do a take on the Blues. "But," she said, "that's plural; not singular 'blue.'" I disregarded her objection and went with it. So here's my humble tribute to legendary Bluesman Lightnin' Hopkins (1912-1982). Thanks for the music and the sincerity, Lightnin'.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Photo Friday: Experimental

Whenever I want to get experimental, I head to the kitchen. Some great (and not-so-great) concoctions have come out of those times.