Forgive me for another moment of artistic pride...
A piece I did was selected for Robert Goodin's great site, Covered, which allows artists to recreate comic book covers in interesting & unusual ways. (Get it? "Cover versions"?) The site has been wildly successful in its little-over-a-year existence & many artists I respect a great deal have done work therein, so I am quite thrilled & more than a lil' proud to say that the following piece was accepted by Mr. Goodin to be in the company of such luminaries of the field & actually posted just a few minutes ago.
Please check it out & give it some love (in the form of a comment) if yer so inclined both here & there (& everywhere!)~
The original cover to compare & contrast~
& if you've come visiting from "Covered", please feel free to wander around & see what these here "very secret monster things" are all about...
I like this piece a lot actually. I think it really captures the essence of the man- his character, his personality & his music as well. I dig the detail in the lines of his face as contrasted by the loose feel of the hands & the middle ground of the horn, all offset by the stark black & white of his suit & spectator shoes.
It just makes me smile, the same way listening to the man himself does, & that's the point, isn't it?
I did a series of portraits many years ago of folks who were HIV positive. These pieces were composites from many interviews I had done & I tried to capture the ideas, feelings & spirit communicated therein to convey rather literally (or perhaps graphically would be more apt) the faces that can give a real human sense to this insidious disease.
I present this piece & the rest of the work in ensuing days in honor of National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day~
Kurt Vonnegut has always held a special place in my heart as well as in my head.
His writings, his beliefs, simply his way of being, influenced my younger self profoundly & still hold a great deal of sway in this somewhat older body in which I now find myself. Of course, Vonnegut would claim, & I think rightfully so, that these two identities are interchangeable, occupying the same time-line albeit at different points, but both exist together, now & forever intertwined.
More important than his works & his philosophies though was his place in the literary triumvirate that is one of the foundations of my relationship with my dad. Devouring those books off my dad's bookshelf in my pre-pubescence became a catapult to help us traverse that leap from being father & son to being friends.
As high school reared it ugly head, the oh-so-long (but equally wonderful) times we spent editing my school papers dwindled. Our Scrabble games also slowed a bit (although they picked up with a vengeance whilst I was in college~ when I finally beat him for the first time!).
But Vonnegut has always remained a cornerstone.
For better or worse, he & my father are responsible for the writer I am today, & a good deal of the man I am today as well.
So it was with quite a good deal of joy that I found this portrait I had drawn of Mr. Vonnegut in one of my old sketchbooks. It's unfinished, smudgy pencil & all. It's certainly not an antique, but it is somewhat vintage.
I had the pleasure of sharing it with Vonnegut at a book signing that I went to with my dad. He looked at it quite intently, then looked up at me with that same bemused smile that he wears in the drawing.
That was a good day indeed.
I marched on Washington in the womb, was named for Martin & Robert; my boots have always been on the ground, both literally & figuratively. I teach now at the same school I attended as a student; community means the world to me, again both literally & figuratively. Activism cannot & should not exist without education & the converse is even more true. The classrooms are the true frontlines of the revolution.
I put this ideal into practice every day & indeed throughout my almost twenty-five year career: helping to realize our school’s Gay Straight Alliance that has served as an exemplar for so many others; creating a mural outreach program whereby students paint inspirational & aspirational artwork both in our hallways & for local charitable organizations; writing & directing plays in collaboration with my students that address social, cultural & political issues; serving in my local community on the Mercer County Human & Civil Rights Committee & on the world stage as a Fulbright Memorial Fund Scholar to Japan; & in my classroom of course wherein I teach & model the idea & ideal of the intersection of art & awareness, of creativity & activism.
rants & ramblings, artistic shenanigans (self-created & stuff that inspires such self-creativity), funkyass music, comix & graphic novels (not just for kids anymore!), sporadic navel-gazing, balderdashery, new & improved longer-lasting ephemera, tales to astonish, doodles & dawdles, & any & all stuff that tickles my fancy (& hopefully yours as well!)...
If you find any of it moves you either body or soul (& especially ass), please purchase the art &/or music legally to support the artists. If I've posted your art &/or music & you want me to un-post it, let me know & it will disappear posthaste. If you download an image or a tune, please have the common courtesy to comment on that post & give me some love, my friend. It's relatively painless, quick & easy, & a small token of kindness for seein' & hearin' such brilliant stuff, y'know.
"Seda-Schreiberlets you into his mind, and it turns out to be a worthwhile place to rummage around... (His work) is like receiving a long letter from a friend you didn't know you had."~ cat yronwode