Friday, February 12, 2016

Thoughts on Art / Alternate Title: I Don't Know What I'm Doing and That's OK

I really don't know what I'm doing. That's art. I've never had any supreme confidence in my art abilities. I only know it's been a constant state of pleasure (and sometimes frustration) since I was able to hold a pencil upright. I'm taking an online class with Carla Sonheim to get some structure to my artwork and so far simply drawing or painting (or sanding or basically making a mess) every day has been an education in seeing objects with clarity and focus. I hope brain synapses are occurring!

Perhaps art is the ultimate god-like move: creating something from nothing. And like the star-nosed mole, it doesn't always have to be pretty or even make a lot of sense.

Some strange combinations of materials produced these images.

This little bear lives on my desk - drawn with my non-dominant (left) hand

Capybara drawn with left hand - try drawing with your "wrong" hand - it's fun and isn't supposed to look "right"

Minimalist frogs

Minimalist dodo - I love dodos - who doesn't?

A newt with jazz hands that I drew from memory with my eyes closed

An anteater drawn with eyes closed - a real day-brightener

A puffin birthday card - screw you, Hallmark

Drawn blind while looking at Velvet Underground photos (blind contour) - really captures a time and place, don't you think?

A flightless and wingless moa, extinct around 1600 - wish moas were still around

This is Claude the alligator from the SF Academy of Science

This is based on a drawing Jackson made of his bike at age 5

This is my first house in San Francisco - it's supposed to be childlike, and yeah, it is

This is another Moa - it's goofy

Who doesn't respect a fish on stilts? Edward Lear drew this Fizzgiggious Fish more than a century ago

These are beginning exercises to get the class drawing without a lot of technical anxiety or perfectionism (good thing). Like when you're a kid with a box of crayons and some scrap paper. That mindset is a good starting place for all artistic play, which will hopefully lead to more thought-out ideas and a substantial body of work. Why is that important? Maybe it isn't important, but what are we supposed to do—watch reality TV until we drop dead? Probably art is a better use of our time and resources. I suspect.

Monday, February 01, 2016

David Bowie Celebrity Cosplay

David Bowie, known for many a fine grand entrance, is gone. We mourn. He leaves behind a huge artistic legacy, including his many fashion looks, imitable but never to pack the punch of their initial impact on our senses. Someone dressed as David Bowie will always be someone dressed as David Bowie and nothing more. Maybe that's why so few celebrity-types have attempted it. They're all busy trying to fly their own freak flag and good luck with that.

Still, let's enjoy some celebrity David Bowie cosplay. This was going to be a tossed-off post while I figure out what I really want to write about. It's become more of a David Bowie fashion rabbit hole and I'm just not prepared to go there. It would take years to properly write about Bowie's world of characters and the clothes they wore and the people he collaborated with to achieve those goals. This is not that post.

This is a post featuring Runaways' singer, Foxes co-star and renowned chain-saw artist Cherie Currie, performing at her Mulholland Junior High School talent show in 1974 as Ziggy Stardust.

Cherie Currie as Bowie - from her revised 2010 biography Neon Angel, written with Tony O'Neill

Currie related to Bowie as a power symbol after she experienced a traumatic incident as a young teen.

She dressed as him again in 2000.

Currie pays tribute.

Kate Moss, who was Bowie's friend, wore his actual Ziggy Stardust bunny-rabbit playsuit to collect his 2014 Brit Award as best male singer. She looks great. But she could make a frock made of dish rags look stunning. Best to leave this look to the professionals.

Kate Moss pays tribute to Bowie for British Vogue and Vogue Paris.

Tilda Swinton as Bowie.

Jean Paul Gaultier's 2013 spring/summer ready-to-wear show featured a slew of pop-music characters you may recall—most from the 80s, and one design based on a 70s' icon.

Who wouldn't want to sport this summery ensemble poolside?

Jessica Lange, channeling Marlene Dietrich via David Bowie on American Horror Story Freak Show.

And finally here's Lady Gaga Exposed's channel's SUPER-INTENSE look at everyone Lady Gaga's ever copied (or paid homage to, depending on your reading of her multiple ch-ch-ch-changes), including Bowie, but just about everyone else on the planet as well. This took a lot of research and features one INTENSE techno track, so give it up, for "Lady Gaga Copies/EXPOSED/Grammys 2010."

And if you'd rather listen to something else while watching Lady Gaga copy or pay homage to everyone who's ever existed, here's an alternative soundtrack to play. Don't say I never gave you options.


Harry Potter as Aladdin Sane by Russell Works