Thursday, October 21, 2010

[ h a u n t e d ]

Michael Reaves is a terrorist.

when i was three years old, i had the singular experience of witnessing Reaves' masterpiece contribution to The Real Ghostbusters, the episode "The Bogeyman Cometh." this is the kind of stuff that is never, under any circumstances, aired to children anymore. the character design is horrifying, the Bogeyman was virtually omnipotent in his appalling, Escherian domain with doors to children's closets the world over, and he wasn't a ghost. that was the kicker - he tormented Egon as a child and the guys couldn't do a damned thing about it. the wheezing, rotten voice dragging across his fangs did not help. nor did his clicking, cloven hooves.

see this, at about 3:45.

you can imagine that i was profoundly traumatized. indeed, for years and years i dreamt of Bogeymen in various incarnations erupting from my closet (one memorable iteration combined him, a Deinonychus and a werewolf). now that the episodes are available on DVD and more or less on Youtube, it's easy to revisit these memories - for better or worse.

last night, i consumed an unfortunate amount of sugar before going to sleep. i dream vividly almost every night, and just as commonly about pleasant or at the worst mundane subjects.

not last night.

last night, i woke up screaming for the first time in memory; two muffled, fettered cries of abject terror. i'd dreamt of you-know-whom, and in my dream hoarsely wheezed, "HE'S REAL. OH GOD HE'S REAL." oh. and then i had a waking hallucination. that was awesome.

anyway. this has been a long time coming.

Click to enlarge

i wish they still made cartoons like this.

/.n [while listening to Crossbreed]

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

[ t h e _ e n d _ o f _ D r e a m ]

only one piece for this year's Halloween offering, since the PARIAH arc has closed at last and i am trying to defend and raise up out of Tallahassee.

i was finally convinced to read Gaiman's "The Sandman" series this year by a friend of some taste. i've long been a fan of Gaiman's works in prose, but at 76 issues plus specials, "Sandman" has a high barrier to entry. having completed it, i can do no less than agree with those who suggest it is one of the greatest products of the English language in the latter part of the century.

no, seriously. a comic book series.

my painting will be esoteric to anyone who has not read the books (read: most of humanity), but resonates with me at a deeply profound level. it's one of my favorite scenes from the climax of the story arc. Gaiman was once asked to summarize his story in 25 words or less, and responded: "The Lord of Dreams learns that one must change or die, and makes his decision."

this is the decision.

Click to enlarge

incidentally, the helm was crafted from the skull and vertebral column of a god who once crossed him. nice.

below is the cartoon sketched before the final rendered work. you can see the differences... the action is more dynamic, and strangely enough the anatomy looks better even if it's physically impossible and only the painting is based (virtual trace) on an actual model. i'm still trying to get a grip on the translation between sketching and rendering, and it doesn't help that i paint figures about once a year. a good friend of some repute in the comic book biz offered a helpful analogy on the same, but it is delightfully dirty and not appropriate for the blog (still looking for a real job... any takers?).

Click to enlarge

"Sandman" has, more than any other work of fiction in many years, done the most to change my ever-calcifying worldview. i'm not a big fan of the art style of most of the books; it vacillates between archaic/weird and overly simplistic ("reductive"), which is why i tried to put a personal touch on this vital element of the tale.



enjoy every minute of this, the finest and richest of months.
/.n [while listening to Doktor Dream and the Malpractice]