Friday, April 22, 2011

No rusty bumpers on this truck!

Okay, this is not a painting, but while we are on the subject of trucks-- Last year this one was next to me at a traffic light. I'm not sure exactly what it was . . . maybe an F-750? . . . F-950?! . . . And SIX doors?!?! I was only able to grab my phone and snap one photo before the light changed and he roared off.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

"Pluggers" . . . Burma Shave signs

Going back aways for this one . . . Great personal memories when, as a youngster back in the '50s, traveling through Northwest Florida, Alabama and Georgia, my ol' dad would get so excited when Burma Shave verses were on the side of the road. He would read them aloud and we would all laugh. Such a simpler time.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

"On the Rocks"

22" x 28"
For three decades, I drew editorial cartoons five days a week, more or less, for the Richmond Times-Dispatch and King Features Syndicate. Imagery was the backbone of the opinions I tried to convey, and I searched constantly for objects that would best make an impact on our readers. Sometimes, a drawing of easy to recognize objects, such as a pig, or a hot air balloon or a great big pot of stew that was labeled "Congress" or "Foreign Policy" or "Inflation" would do the trick. At other times, the cartoon may need something more specific, such as an F-18 fighter jet, a Holstein cow or the Great Wall of China. At these times (prior to "Google"), I would go to what in the past few years was referred to as the newspaper "library", but in the old days was simply the "morgue." There, literally hundreds of thousands of photos were alphabetically filed in dozens of five-foot tall gray metal filing cabinets. From "aardvark" to "zebra" and thousands of topics in between. The morgue was just a thirty second walk from my office, so I would often wander over and browse through files, looking for interesting images to spark cartoon ideas. At times, I would come across old photos that really intrigued me, and  I would check them out, take them to my office and set them out to ponder them at my leisure. One of those was an old photo from 1947 of an old U.S. Army ship that apparently broke its moorings and ran aground on some rocks during a storm in Maine. The old photo was, or course, in black and white. But it was an intriguing image, so I, ahem, "borrowed" it from the morgue for possible use. Anyhow, although I never used the image for an editorial cartoon, I did a small watercolor of it a couple of years ago. As a challenge, I used only two colors, burnt sienna and cobalt blue. It was an interesting painting, so I recently decided to do it again, this time with my oil color palette of ultramarine blue, napthol red, cadmium yellow and burnt sienna.