Red Poppy

Trying out watercolor pencils with a quick poppy study.

I can't mention my favorite flower without also noting one of my favorite installations, Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red, the 2014 brainchild of ceramic artist Paul Cummins. With the help of stage designer Tom Piper, 888,246 ceramic red poppies were planted in the Tower of London's dry moat in commemoration of the allied fallen in WWI. I kid you not, 30 seconds after reading the original post on Colossal, I was prepared to drop everything as I looked up plane tickets to London - only to realize the installation had already been dismantled by that time. I'll just have to keep my sights on the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve (or the Eastern Mediterranean?).
 

I'm feelin rough I'm feelin raw

Can you tell I have a thing for nostalgia? 

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While Time to Pretend, MGMT's synth-soaked 2007 hit from the formidable Oracular Spectacular, is nothing more than a satirical cliché of rock star dreams and the lives of those in the spotlight, the weight of this middle verse has been tuggin' at my heart strings since the early days of high school.

 (I based the landscape in the background of this sketch on my favorite Gustave Baumman print, Palo Verde and Ocotea, 1928. I fell in love the moment I laid eyes on it at the IMA's Baumann exhibit earlier this year.)

Bowie Tribute

Obviously I felt compelled to combine my favorite photo of Bowie (by Terry O'Neill) and a portion of my favorite Bowie lyrics (Memory of a Free Festival) into an illustration with some necessary gold leaf thrown in for added measure.

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 "I received an email from him seven days ago. It was funny as always, and as surreal, looping through word games and allusions and all the usual stuff we did. It ended with this sentence: ‘Thank you for our good times, Brian. they will never rot.’

I realise now he was saying goodbye."

-Brian Eno on David Bowie 1/11/16

 

Animals x Bukowski (Explicit)

I've been wanting to practice creating animals in simple black line for a more illustrative effect than I'm used to.  So, understandably I thought to myself, "what better way to do it than to combine my favorite unsullied creatures with the sometimes depressing, sometimes crude, and most always offensive musings of Charles Bukowski?"

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Side note: While Bukowski may have been the world's most lugubrious misogynist, his novels Factotum, Ham on Rye, and Post Office remain three of my favorites. And his poetry far outweighs his prose -  if you haven't, I highly recommend checking some of it out, like this one, this one, and this one.