Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Moth Rose

At long last, a new piece before the sand in 2008's glass is run. This piece was done as a trade with another artist: a maker of Native American Style wooden flutes by the name of Ed Dougherty. He crafted me a flute in the key of high B out of a marvelous redwood burl with prima vera endcaps, and in exchange I did a lovely faery portrait for his daughter. Its intended recepient received it today and from what I hear she is very pleased with her belated Christmas gift. You can see a photo of my new flute on his homepage: Tree of Life Designs.

He told me a little bit about what she likes: bright colors, pink roses, the night sky alight with moon and stars, etc. and I went from there. This is a bit of a different avenue from my preferred emphasis in Faery art, but I didn't get the impression that dark and brooding was what would suit her best.

It also have me the opportunity to illustrate moth wings which is something I have been wanting to do for a while. (Mind you, I'm not universally opposed to wings - I just think that for most artists they have become a crutch when depicting faeries and are included compulsively rather than with care and intention.)

This image is something of a speculation on the mythical origins of moths. Perhaps they are so attracted to light because of some sympathy with their birth place: a very special sort of rose glowing pink at the edges, the color of the illuminated thinness of flesh when cupped over a flashlight, with petals of tattered wings unfurled on a certain night, releasing them into the sky. The dust from their soft bodies, an interstellar medium, swirled, collided, and caught in its own momentum. Thus the stars sparked to life. Yeats speaks of "moth-like stars flickering out" in The Song of the Wandering Aengus, and maybe he had the same idea.

Size: 8 x 10 inches
Media: Prismacolor colored pencils, watercolor, acrylic, colored ink

Friday, December 19, 2008

Gothic Art Now

I was asked to submit three pieces for a potential art book entitled Gothic Art Now by the lovely Jasmine Beckett-Griffith sometime last year. After submitting the images and necessary paperwork, I heard nothing. It slipped to the back of my mind after a while, and I did not think anything of the project.

A couple of months ago, I saw that the book was available for pre-order and it touted the works of such artists as Brom, HR Giger, and Chet Zar. The lack of response plus the knowledge of the style and technical ability of artists who definitely had work included in the project basically convinced me that none of my pieces were accepted for inclusion.

Then by chance I discovered a sample chapter online and, low and behold, one of my pieces was in it! I tried not to get my hopes up since I realized I may have stumbled across a draft version and perhaps my work had been edited out in the final version. A few days later, someone from UPS called to get an address correction. They said they had a package for me from Harper Collins. The book was delivered the next day, and to my surprise and delight, not only one but all three of my pieces are included!

I was also gleeful to discover that a number of my favorite artists also have work included: Steven Kenny, David Bowers, Jessica Joslin, Scott Radke, Patrick Arrasmith, Carrie Ann Baade, etc.

If you'd like to take a look firsthand, you can find it available on
Amazon and I'm sure some major booksellers also carry it. You can also find out more on the Harper Collins website.