Monday, November 30, 2009

In Case You Missed It

In case anyone missed the "memo", I am no longer a Christan and do not believe in God in any way you would understand. The Magic Old man in the sky who rewards "good" boys and girls who follow his supposed rules in (pick a "Holy" book ANY "Holy" book) and punishes "bad" boys and girls with eternal torment is a MYTH, a LIE, NOT TRUE in any form!!
This may sound like I am angry, but really I am just upset that I wasted so bloody much of my time worrying about, thinking about and "practicing" things related to the fantasy of "Christianity".
I am not an atheist, I have experienced way to much to not understand that there is much more to reality than what we know and see. But If their is a being that created all things, It doesn't care what we do! If it is ALL powerful and wanted humans to be good, the world would not be what it is today. Religion is a man made thing, designed to control and manipulate people. That is ALL it is, it does not make the world better in any way! There is good and evil but how can anyone claim that they know what "God" wants or thinks? Life is for living not wasting it trying to do the right things according to some MAN who says "God" wants you to wear this or eat that or hate this person or that one. Wasting your life planing for or fearing the afterlife is STUPID! If there is an afterlife then be the best person you can be (NOT by following stupid rules but by treating others right) and I am sure you will get what you deserve. Living JUST for what you get after you die is crazy!! OK, I will stop this rant for now, but please THINK, if someone said they believed in aliens who put humans on Earth and will be coming back to take those who believe in them to a better place but leave "nonbelievers" to would think that person was insane! And if they could decide what rights you could have and what you couldn't' have, I don't think you would be to please with it or tolerant of that craziness. Well that is what "Christianity" is to me!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Another Tarot

When I made my Tarot deck, I added 3 cards, "Talent", "Life" and "Angel". The Talent card represents all forms of talent but is mostly about extra abilities, mental abilities that most people either do not have or do not use. I still like the image and symbology even after over 20 years. This was done in marker and colored pencil on illustration board.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Last Christmas

This was one of the card designs for our Christmas cards last year. It isn't as realistic as I had wanted but people seemed to like it. 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 roughly. "White Wolves", Acrylic on Canson board.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Disturbing but AMAZING

We Are ALL Doomed

Well, since the brilliant Right Wing has discovered the evil scientific "Cabal" that has perpetrated the hoax of Global Warming upon us... with thinking like that and the denial of facts in favor of superstition and religion, I think the human race is truly DOOMED!

So here is a post apocalyptic picture to show you what we might face in the future. "Future Primitive", about 6 x 10 or so I think, Acrylic and watercolor colored pencil on Canson board.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

My Tarot

I don't think I have posted much about my Tarot Deck. I spent 8 months back in the 80's making my own Tarot cards. Now, thanks to computers, I have them scanned, cleaned up and have printed 7 decks for sale so far. I am selling 100 decks at $100 each (if I had realized how labor intensive doing them was I would have charged more). These are signed and numbered and so far deck number 1-6 and deck number 13 have been sold. Here is the "Fool" card, it has all the other major Arcana cards on it (in the bubbles).

Monday, November 23, 2009

Three Wolves Card

This was one of our Christmas cards for 2006. Because of Vista Prints card size (which they have since shrunk and I am not happy about it) and my miscalculation on proportions, the picture had to be cropped and lost a bit of the body of the wolves at the bottom. While I like some of this, it just did not come out as well as I had hoped. Acrylic on Canson board.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Well Deserved

I just went to an SCA event where I delivered a scroll to the King and Queen so they could award someone for their accomplishments in the arts. The Pearl is the kingdom of Atlantia's Arts award. My apprentice, Amie Sparrow, was the recipient. I did the scroll and that is what is posted here. She does amazing costuming and research/documentation, nothing I taught her, so while I am proud, I can take no credit. I also passed on my Pearl medallion, which had belong to 2 other men before me. This was approximately 5 1/2 x 8 1/2, done in Acrylics on Velum (animal skin not paper), the ink is Oak Gall ink (and the really bad calligraphy is also by me). This is my 63rd picture of the year.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Another Old Card

I did this in 2006 and it was inspired by children's book illustrations I really like. The concept is to have Jack Frost writing on a window. ( "Seasons Greetings" was added in a frosted lettering style by computer for our card.) The trees etc as seen through the frosted glass are pretty abstract but I like the way it came out. When I first did this I had his doublet all blue, but I had in the back of my mind the idea of having snow flakes on it. I scanned the picture with the doublet as all blue and then added the snow flakes and scanned it again. I definitely prefer the one with the snow flakes so that is what we used. "Little Jack Frost", roughly 5 1/2 x 8 1/2, Acrylic, watercolor colored pencil and Pro White on illustration board.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Facebook test

I now have a Facebook page, sorta. I have no idea how to do anything on it and have tried a few things but they didn't seem to work. I have invited a few people to be on my friends list. We will see if I keep it for long.

Ghosts of Christmas Cards Past

Since I started this Weble just this year, I think I will post some of the Christmas card designs I have done in the past few years. This was one of the designs for last years cards. It is based on a Medieval stained glass window. This was around 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 on tracing paper (bad idea but I was trying to get the stained glass look and knew other artists who had worked on this for certain effects.) Micron marker and Acrylic.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

To Facebook or NOT to Facebook

OK, I hate "social networking" by computer, it's not really social and I am not a fan of computers. I made the effort/concession to have this Weble at the start of the year and it has been ok. It has at least let me get a little feedback on my work and keep track of what I have done during the year art wise.
Now I have been asked by several people to get on Facebook. I really dislike Facebook and some part of me sees it as a plot to keep tabs on us all and get information for not the best purposes!
What do any of you think? Should I cave to "peer pressure" and follow the crowd and be a computer sheep and get on Facebook?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

TV Inspired

Back in the early 90's there was a TV show called "Beauty and the Beast". I enjoyed it as did our roommate at the time, Karen. So one year, for her Birthday I did a picture of Vincent from the show as her gift. I did this while she was in the small 2 bedroom apartment we shared and managed to work on it with her in the apartment and she never saw it or knew it was being done until I gave it to her. It was not an easy task. The background was inspired by a tarot deck called "the Stained Glass Tarot" and while the art wasn't real stained glass looking, it was very striking and well designed. I think it is smaller than 8 1/2 x 11 (but I can't recall exactly). "St Vincent of the Rose", Acrylic on Bristol paper.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

This Old Scroll

Actually it's not that old, it's just not one done in the last 2 years. But it is a favorite of mine as I love the Renaissance period and this has many elements I enjoy doing and seeing. This is a Laurel scroll, the Laurel is the highest award in the SCA ( for the Arts. The lady this was for does wonderful calligraphy and illumination. Her heraldry (the shield in the circle, which is the letter O), is really great in my opinion. Almost every detail in this has special meaning to the lady it was done for. All the symbols are specifically related to her SCA life and awards. This is based on Renaissance manuscript pages from the 1500's , Italian area (Italy really wasn't much in the Renaissance period. The area we now call Italy was a series of Independent City States and the Renaissance really started in and flowed from Florence.) Anyway, this is 8 1/2 x 11, Acrylic on velum (animal skin NOT paper). The ink for the calligraphy (which I did) is Oak Gall ink, a period ink.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Great Story

Understanding Better

This is another non art related post (well only art connected indirectly). I have only been seeing creation in a different light for what, less than a week, just over a week? It has already been an amazing experience. While I am in no way against any one believing whatever they want, I now not only don't believe in any "religion" but I don't like to use the work believe. I have a different understanding, and while I feel I am on the right path, I can not say it is the only path or that I am not way off the truth. If the Devine Spirit, Creator or whatever you want to call it is "God" for you, that is fine, but for me the word God is just to limited a concept and I won't use it anymore. Devine Spirit is ok but still so not right, but I guess I have to call it something. The Universe is another term but that has a "physical" definition already and that is of course to limited as well.
The way I see it, it would be like one of my cells saying that it understood how I thought or what I felt and of course, it is nothing like me even though it is part of me. It has no clue or concept of what I want, think, feel. So when ANYONE or any book claims to tell us what "God" wants, thinks or feels, you can be sure they don't really have a clue!
In the time since my eyes have been opened I have learned SO much. I am beginning to think that being a "Christian" or "Muslim" or following any religion makes you blind to the truth. We are taught that we should believe a certain way, not question anything and do what our "leaders" tell us. This is stupidity and goes against any idea of freedom or of real thought.
I still plan to post art and not other stuff here, but my brain is so full now of these new thoughts, ideas and understandings that I had to put it down someplace.
The Infinite..maybe that is the right term, is so far beyond our understanding that we all are delusional and maybe even insane to not only claim we have the answers, but to claim they come from "God". We can only try and live as the best we can be and to be one with everything. Hate and fear and judgment are all in opposition to this goal. Guilt and self loathing or doubt and trying to force anyone to be anything that they are not, is simply wrong. Using "God" or religion to justify hate and prejudice is evil and vile and we should all fight this. And claiming that it is not hate of prejudice because your "religion" says whatever you are being against is wrong, is just a lie deep inside, those who claim that excuse know they are wrong.

OK, I am starting to sound like I am preaching so I will stop. If anyone actually reads this and wants to discuss anything I will happily go on in private or in comments.

Medival, Sort Of

I realized I have not posted much of my SCA scroll work here, only the new stuff I have done this year. So here is a bad scan (all I have of it) of a periodish piece. It is based on Celtic works but also on more modern/realistic Celtic art. If I can ever get a good scan of it I would love to sell prints of the panels (the Raven side and the Hern side). This was an open commission, they paid me but didn't give me much in the way of what they wanted, other than their AoA (Award of Arms) scroll. Personally I love it and will get a good scan eventually if I bug the owner for enough years! It is 9 x 12 or so if I remember right. Acrylic on watercolor paper or Bristol, again, I can't recall. This was done back in the early 90's I think.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

New Visions

Actually I did this a while ago, in 2001. This was partly inspired by an artist whose work combines amazing pencil work with color. I really like it but his is much better. I may try more in this style someday but for now it's more or less a one of a kind where my work is concerned. "Emerald Eyes", about 10 x 10 I think. Pencil and watercolor colored pencil with a tiny bit of Acrylic on Canson paper.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

New Understanding

As the Buddhist monk said to the hot dog vendor, "Make me one with everything". This is my new understanding of how I should be. I have evolved, progressed, grown, however you want to say it beyond the petty, legalistic, hateful "religion" I once believed in. In another 50 years, I may change again but I somehow doubt it. To not fight the universe but to embrace it, to not fear, but to welcome...I already feel so different. Here is a picture that in no way shows what I am talking about but somehow feels like a good image for how I am thinking now. "Space Dolphins" done in 1992, Acrylic and Prisma color on grey mat board. I think it's about 15 x 20, maybe smaller.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Another Time, Another Me

Back when I was in my 20's, I painted a large self portrait. This was done during a winter when I had little to do but work at a job that was not stimulating and paint. I have very few of the works I did then saved. But this 30 x 40 painting on canvas is still with me. My mother liked this so much she now has a print of it hanging in her livingroom. I was blond (which she said she didn't like) and this is an odd cross time self portrait. The face is me then, the background is from my memories of Atlantis and my first incarnation (Nothing to do with lasers and high tech etc). The triangular building in the distance is the Temple Mountain, a temple to the Moon God. If anyone wants to know more about my memories of Atlantis etc. feel free to ask.

I love the staff and want one! The only things in this picture that were physically there for me to paint were me, the crystal and the sea shells. Everything else came from my mind.

Monday, November 9, 2009

If God Had Wanted Me To Be Accepting Of Gays, He Would Have Given Me The Warmth And Compassion To Do So

I don't question God. The Lord is my Shepherd and I shall put none above Him. Which is why I know that if it were part of God's plan for me to stop viciously condemning others based solely on their sexual preference, He would have seen fit—in His infinite wisdom and all—to have given me the tiniest bit of human empathy necessary to do so.
It's a simple matter of logic, really. God made me who I am, and who I am is a cold, anti-gay zealot. Thus, I abhor gay people because God made me that way. Why is that so hard to understand?
Here, let's start with the basic facts: I hate and fear gay people. The way they feel is different from how I feel, and that causes me a lot of confusion and anger. Everyone knows God is all-powerful. He could easily have given me the capacity to investigate what's behind those feelings rather than tell strangers in the park they're going to hell for holding hands. But God clearly has another path for me. And who am I to question His divine will?
Compassion, tolerance, understanding, basic decency, the ability to put myself in another person's position: God could have endowed me with any of those traits and yet—here is the crucial part—He didn't. Why? Because the Creator of the Universe wants me to demonize homosexuals in an effort to strip them of their fundamental human rights.
I'm sorry, but you can't possibly ask me to explain everything God does. He works in mysterious ways, remember?
Try to understand. If I were capable of thinking and acting any other way, then I'm sure I would, but God seems to be quite adamant about this one. He's just not budging at all. So unless our almighty Lord and Savior decides to change His mind about my ability to empathize on even the most basic level—which I find highly unlikely—then everyone is just going to have to accept the fact that I'm going to keep on hating homosexuals. And I know that He will fill me with the strength to remain mindless and hurtful in the face of adversity.
Which isn't to say that my faith hasn't been tested. Believe me, there have been times when I've drifted from the bitter and terrified life God has chosen for me. When my younger brother told me he was gay, it shook my faith to its very core. But here I am, 27 years later, still refusing to take his calls. Just the way God intended.
It's actually pretty astonishing how many complaints to the school board you can make regarding the new band teacher you've never met when you are filled with the Light of Christ and devoid of any real kindness or mercy toward His other children.
At the end of the day, I'm just trying to lead a good Christian life. That means going to church on Sunday, following the Ten Commandments, and fighting what I believe to be a sexual abomination through a series of petty actions and bitter comments made under my breath. Sure, I sometimes wish God would just reach into my heart and give me the ability to treat all people with, at the very least, the decency and respect they deserve as human beings. But unfortunately for that new couple who moved in three houses down, He hasn't yet.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I have God's work to do.

(While this appreared in an issue of "The Onion" it strikes home as true of so many who represent the Christian community).

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Large Commission Finished

I finally got the large dragon commission done. This was allot of work. The background alone took many many layers and much work. The dragon has about 8 layers including thousands of individual scales/bumps. I was asked to do a realistic, non fantasy dragon. I used real lizards, mostly Monitors as my base. The client wanted a brown/bronze color, they wanted the dragon to be about to pounce (lizards just stand very still before pouncing). I decided to make it about to attack some birds and so the one raised claw. "Draconis Tristanis, the Bird Hunting Dragon" 20 x 30, Acrylic and watercolor colored pencil on Canson board. 62

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Defenders of Neverland

Following up my picture of "The Pan" is "The Defenders of Neverland". This is actually the picture I did first. I got this idea from a photo and the attitude of the boys just stood out and they became lost boys. It took me years before I found just the right model for The Pan! I have always been happy with this and I hope you find it as pleasing as I do. 15 x 20, Acrylic and watercolor colored pencil on Canson board.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Were The World Mine

I hope the link works. I was going to post something about this song (and Movie) and found this already out there and decided not to repeat something already done well.
Just adding a picture to go with this, "Puck", 4 x 11 or so, Acrylic and watercolor colored pencil on illustration board.

Be Sure You Are Counted!

When the census comes to you, if you are Gay, write it IN! I am betting that they will not ask if you are gay on the form and that is a way for them to not count us or marginalise us. I encourage all Gays and friends of Gays to tell everyone to write in that you are Gay (if you are) when it comes to the census! They ask if you are male, female, christian but I BET they don't ask if you are Gay!

New Gods, Old Gods, No Gods

OK while I call this picture "The Pan" it refers to Peter Pan (who is not a God) and not the Great God Pan (who is NOT the devil or anything like him). Anyway, I was going to post a picture of my son as a way to calm myself after my last post, but I already posted his picture a ways back. So, I will post this which also brings me joy. I researched Peter Pan (NOT the Disney version) and this is more in keeping with how he is described in the book. He has a real dagger, not a wooden sword. He wears very little, a belt of ghost leaves (which I looked up) and he has attitude! Tinkerbell is nude and buxom, at least as I read it! I love the face and just about everything about this picture. 15 x 20, Acrylic and watercolor colored pencil on Canson board. As with all my work, prints are available!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Warning, NON Art Related RANT

I have been a Christian for most of my life. I have believed in the Christan God in one form or another since I was 6. I am no longer a Christan! When the Bigots who deny me the same Rights as everyone else, and who lie and spread hate claim to be Christians, I can no longer be associated with that religion. I have fought and argued that the Bigots and hatters are a minority and not "real" Christians, but you know, apparently they ARE! So unless God makes a miracle and Gays get the same Rights as everyone else in the next few months, I am NOT a Christian!

Still Underwater

This is from 1990 and has always been one of my favorites. It didn't start as an underwater picture, but as I was doing the figure and started working on his hair, it seemed to have the look of hair underwater. So I decided to make the background underwater ruins. I really enjoy doing the surface of the water as seen from below. Getting the colors right can be difficult but when it works, it is worth it! This is called "Son of Atlan", this is in reference to several ancient cultures Gods and homelands that seem to be origins for the name Atlantis. This was a small picture, maybe 5 x 7, Acrylic, watercolor colored pencil on Canson board.

Monday, November 2, 2009

More Mermen

I have had a long fascination with mermen. I was born in the middle of Illinois but I have always had a fondness for the sea and Mermen seem to embody that for me. This picture may be the cover for my color book "Son's of the Sea", I have so many I am not sure which will work best as the cover. But this is the one I currently plan to use. It is called "Freeing the Dolphins" and was done on 9 x 12 Bristol in Acrylic and watercolor colored pencil.