Sue Their #@% Off
posted: December 15, 2009
I love it when personal work and assignments intersect. SooJin Buzelli had seen a painting I did for a book that I've been working on called SHTBNALD.  She gave me an assignment to illustrate and article on suits. Or at least that's the gist I got, because to be honest, the article was pretty heavy slogging. We had a conversation and agreed that the comet as metaphor for suits was pretty cool. Like incoming space debris, litigation is often out of the blue and devastating.
Here's the layout SooJin supplied with my SHTBNALD painting as a place holder. I thought the comet idea worked very well with the subject matter.
Here are the sketches. We agreed on something like the second and last ones.
Because the SHTBNALD paintings were done very spontaneously. I wanted to have the same effect here. I started with a light raw sienna wash and did the inkwork without the benefit of a preliminary drawing, a light table or a projector. I wanted freshness in the line so I did 3 different inkings. The third one really sucked so I won't show that one. The background washes are all done wet on wet and at times it's like juggling chainsaws. I proceeded with two of the inkings until I made the decision to pursue the one that eventually would be the finish. Now here's the weird thing. In the heat of the battle I had a brain cramp and actually made each illo a half inch too deep. Embarrassing to say the least. Luckily SooJin was able to crop the top and it worked out OK. Hopefully she will forget all about that and call me again sometime with another assignment.
As Cathie has pointed out, there is a ton of great illustration in this issue. Check it out here.
posted: December 3, 2009
The Answers to Last Week's Puzzle - This was the sketchbook page that started the whole thing.
Lately I've been putting up a drawing a day on my Facebook page as a way of getting some of my sketchbook stuff out there. A couple of weeks ago I posted the above drawing. Later in the day I was speaking with a good friend from Albuquerque and this drawing happened to be on my computer screen. While we were engaged in a free ranging conversation, I started to look at the drawing and started to see the possibilities for primitive figures emerge. For the next several weeks I explored melding words, primitive forms and watercolors in the form of a series of paintings. The words came via free association and I only used a dictionary to check spelling ( and even then there are mispellings) I'm  sure a therapist could have a field day with this stuff.

Own Free Volition - These paintings also gave me the opportunity to try out some new pigments. I usually order my supplies for Jerry's Art-o-Ramma and I always beg them for freebies. That pink color in the middle was a sample from a Japanese watercolor line. It is electric.
Bombay Pistol
Wrongway Peachfuzz
In the middle of all this I received an assignment from Emily Aldrich in Minneapolis to illustrate an article for the Kenyon College Alumni magazine about a woman who translates poetry. This piece dovetailed perfectly with the word paintings I had been doing and gave me the opportunity to try something different.
In this case, the words related to the process of poetry translation.
All images copyright Hal Mayforth and may not be used without permission | 802-229-2716