Friday, October 6, 2017

In my dream, part 57-01

In my dream, I'm in a class. The corner of the classroom is a floor to ceiling window. The view is of a prairie with mountains on the left side. The room is at considerable altitude. I am asked by the professor to look at objects in a long glass case opposite the window and identify the tallest one. There are various bottles full of formaldehyde and things preserved in it. There is a centrifuge that looks like a weathervane, with a cone on top and four orbs surrounding a central cylinder. The cone is brass, the spheres are black and the cylinder is red. 

While I am standing in front of the case with my back to everyone with hands on hips, the professor says, "I should take a picture of this." I turn around briefly -- noticing I am wearing a lab coat -- then identify the weathervane as the tallest object. It was a tough choice as they were all almost exactly the same height.

The professor says I am correct, but his assistant says, "Wait a minute" and looks at the case herself, scrutinizing the objects closely. "He's right," she says. I have returned to my seat and another student and I look at each other and say at the same time, "They change height!" We then conclude it must be because of temperature.

Later, the professor is reclined with his head off the edge of a bed or couch. His face is bathed in afternoon light. He looks in my direction and says, "I saw it, but I didn't notice it."


For some reason, I locked on that phrase after the dream ended, drifting between dozing and momentary wakefulness. How often do we see something, but not notice details? It seems trivial, but if you're the eyewitness to a murder (I watch too much NCIS), what you saw is one thing, but the proverbial devil is in the details. This notion, silly though it might be, will probably niggle at me all day.

Thanks, dream.

Friday, March 17, 2017


So I had "Noon" on my list. And how does one draw noon exactly? Well...

III.XVI.XVII. The Bastard

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

III.XV.XVII. Harvest (version 2)

I had the title "The Scythe" on my list and, while Death seemed an obvious choice, I decided to check out what the ancient Egyptians might have had to offer. Well, they had a sickle. So I took some liberties.

You can find the original version of Harvest here.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017


Sometimes I get trapped by my own rules for a project and have to make decisions on an artwork that don't go with the rest of the pictures. "Night" was one of these. 

I wanted it to fit with the Coloring Book theme I've chosen for this particular body of work, but reversing the black and white produced the more dramatic drawing.

If only I had an art blog where I could discuss these dilemmas and present the alternative art! I really should get one of those.

I waffled over the constellations to use too. I first thought of the Big Dipper, but that seemed some how too simple. Next, I considered Sagittarius, my birth sign, but every picture of the constellation I looked at seemed to use a different group of stars...and I was not going to use "The Teapot." Orion was too obvious.

So I returned to the Big Dipper and, while I looked at photo after photo, it occurred to me that it was the Big Dipper to which I looked in awe as a child, and from there to the Little Dipper and Cassiopeia. What better representation could there be for the night than the stars by which I steered my childhood and youth?

Monday, March 13, 2017


Sunday, March 12, 2017

III.XII.XVII. Politics

In my dream, I am in a typical retail break room. It looks like there are monitors against the wall being watched, but they are really boxes containing jewelry of various kinds. I know this, but cannot see the stuff. To one side, the President of the United States is leaning over a table, his hands flat on it's top, his head bowed. He says, "What if the people really wanted a stupid President?"

Then the President is lying on the floor. He is wearing only a suit jacket. He has no legs. He is not injured, just legless. We are talking, having a spirited debate, as if his current condition isn't anything unusual. He says, "Would you have voted for Jimmy Carter?"

I said, "I was raised in a Republican household. It was Nixon and Ford all the way. Mr. Carter will only ever be remembered for one gigantic failure. But he tried to be a hero, and that's what's important. He tried."

It was a busy dream with a lot going on, people moving to and fro in the background, conversations being had, but I don't remember anything after that. 


A note: I'm politically inert -- I work hard to remain that way -- and so I bear the President no ill will. I wonder at some of his choices, like many do, but it is my hope he finds a pathway to success. 

That being said, this dream has lingered into my waking hours as few do and therefore requires to be noted.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

III.XI.XVII. Divorce

Yup. That's about what it's like.

III.X.XVII. Cerberus

I had "Flamingo" on my list of card names (along with Finch, Parrot, et al.), so I drew a flamingo. But it seemed so very boring. A couple of extra heads solved that problem. To which level of Hell do you suppose this guy guards the gateway?

I added the cattails to give some depth, but a friend of mine insisted it's a chorus line of frogs. I just can't see that.

Can you?

III.IX.XVII. "Five of Swords"

This is an update of an older drawing where I was attempting to make the illustration more Cubist.

I'm still not happy with it. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

III.VIII.XVII. Communication

Basically, this represents everything I've done with my art for the last five years. 

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

III.VII.XVII. The Zealot

Monday, March 6, 2017

III.VI.XVII. Frailty

I had written "weakness" on my card list, but didn't like how the word itself seemed less powerful than "strength," for which I wanted this illustration to be a counterpart. to the rescue.

III.V.XVII. "Hope anchors the soul"

III.IV.XVII. Release

III.III.XVII.The Factory

There are those crazy mallets again...


This was originally entitled "The Power Button," but I remembered my rule of not having recognizable symbols in my artwork (with only certain exceptions). So I opted for crossed mallets...and was promptly reminded by a friend of the marching hammers from the movie, Pink Floyd The Wall.

Oh, well.

III.I.XVII. The War Machine

There are a bunch of extraterrestrial flavored names on my prospective card list. I realized that I'd never really drawn my take on one of the Martian war machines from H.G. Wells' celebrated The War of the Worlds.

So here it is.

II.XXVIII.XVII. Ancestral Weight

I read a review of a CD and the reviewer referred to the "ancestral weight" of the musician's songs. This image leapt to my mind pretty much whole.

Everyone knows that Kokopelli reminds me of my Dad, so for me the image has it's own "ancestral weight."

II.XXVII.XVII. The Cheshire Beanie

I don't have to explain anything about my drawings. I'm an artist. Besides, trying to explain something like this presumes there's an explanation.

And there's not.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

II.XXVI.XVII. The Pyromaniac (aka the Arsonist)

II.XXV.XVII. Death Molar

No, so far as I know there isn't a name for what's wrong with me. Also no, I do think I care.


See the original, inexplicable sketch below. I don't know what the various notes mean, but they'll undoubtedly turn up as drawings sooner or later. 

Stay tuned.

Friday, February 24, 2017

II.XXIV.XVII. The Tiny Prophet

So today I felt fairly terrible, but I worked like a good boy. Then I wanted to show a friend of mine something from my sketchbook via Skype and its elastic keeper-closer (which had lost all of it's elasticity) caught on my just-filled coffee cup overturning it, soaking me, and creating a splatter pattern on my carpet almost the exact size of a bath towel.

Then this happened.

I don't know whether to laugh or cry.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

II.XXIII.XVII. The Tempest

This goes out to the guy who wrote a long letter that I had to answer about how his order wasn't going to arrive on time, that it was being delayed, that every customer service rep he spoke to gave no help or conflicting information and why was he supposed to bother shopping with my company after all that anyway?

His order arrived on time, the day after his 2000 word freakout. Do you think he'll apologize to my company for his having been wrong in his judgment of us?

No, he will not.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017


When I started drawing this morning, I had forgotten that NASA had a press conference today to announce a new discovery. As it turns out, a nearby star , TRAPPIST-1, has seven Earth-sized planets, three of which fall within the star's Goldilocks Zone, and all of which have the potential to have liquid water. I'm a little blown away.

So, in honor of this exciting discovery...

II.XXI.XVII. Freedom

It's possible this is a commentary on current events.

Monday, February 20, 2017

II.XX.XVII. The Butcher

So, my not-very-obvious intention was to play on the "butch" in butcher and put him in a leather biker jacket. So much for that. What a less than clever cleaver.

But there are plenty of bonus Audrey IIs though, so there's that.

Sunday, February 19, 2017


This morning I wondered if I could cram 14 buildings into a cityscape in my playing card format.

Yup, I can.

Saturday, February 18, 2017


I tried to pick a random title to draw from my list of undrawn cards and landed on "The Sinner." While that's were I started, it's clearly not at all where I wound up.

Friday, February 17, 2017

II.XVII.XVII. The Yes-man

I ran across a sketch in my work journal today (below) and decided it would be today's drawing. Why or when I drew it, I have no idea. I played around with titles like "Malleable" and "Mutable" and "Adaptable," but decided on yes-man because who is more soft-headed than that kind of person really?

Not that I'm judging. Or bitter.

I also wrote "your fault" next to the guy. Whose fault? No clue.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

II.XVI.XVII. Want (aka The Magician)

Occasionally, what starts as one thing ends as another. The Muses had pretty much abandoned me tonight, but then I hit on the idea of Want as a hole through a person, through one's heart. Not terribly original, I know.

I had an old head I'd built a long time ago so I started with removing his eyes, then constructed the heart and his robe. Then realized he needed the suit icons from the Tarot.

Then I realized he was The Magician. Just like that.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

II.XV.XVII. Longing

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

II.XIV.XVII. The Valentine

People feel a lot of different ways about Valentine's Day. As an artist, the symbols are wonderful to employ in drawings. So I do.

Happy Valentine's Day everybody.

Monday, February 13, 2017

II.XIII.XVII. Creation

There's no place like home.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

II.XII.XVII. The Deterrent

BOOM. etc.

II.XI.XVII. Deception

There are a few ideas (such as the Three of Swords) I like to revisit from time to time. I drew the original sketch (below) for this Trojan Horse in September 2011 and again in April 2012

For this presentation, I chose to go with the masculine shape of a colt horse. For me, it gives the drawing a kind of life it hasn't had previously. But why draw this again? 

The truth is,  I like the wheels.

Friday, February 10, 2017

II.X.XVII. The Corporate Monstrosity

II.IX.XVII. The Inverted Snowman

II.VIII.XVII. The Tunnel

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

II.VII.XVII. The Spear King

A surprising number of my drawings are inspired by typographical errors, and this one falls into that category. On my internet wanderings, I ran across this: "Does this spearking support Apple's AirPlay?" I don't remember what kind of speaker it was about which the question was asked, I just remember the image it sparked in my mind:

Monday, February 6, 2017

II.VI.XVII. Suicide Watch

Sometimes my brain makes a visual play on words that I can't resist. The above started life as another workplace sketch (below), one I decided I ought not publish there. Every now and again, my censor errs on the side of caution. On my time though, anything goes.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

II.V.XVII. The Shepherd

As I've probably mentioned, I doodle cartoons at work on 3x5 note cards based on things my coworkers have said that I've found amusing and that sparked an image in my mind. Well, these cards have also turned out to be handy for dashing off quick unrelated ideas as well.

That was the origin of the fellow above, basically a mitered figure with five eyes and a bit of a scowl (see below). Everything else was an embellishment to finish the drawing for this presentation.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

II.IV.XVII. Identity Collapse

So, I read somewhere if you want to learn something new, do an internet search for any two words. I chose "Identity Collapse." It was the first pair of words that leapt to mind. I was expecting some kind of weird and cruel mental syndrome, but apparently it's a band.

Moving on.

Friday, February 3, 2017

II.III.XVII. Condemnation

When I flip someone off, it's an expression of anger. I'm wholly intending to express displeasure, frustration, and even fury with the recipient. It's a very in-the-moment gesture.

But if I give someone a thumbs-down? That's not indicative of anger at all. I'm sitting in judgment.