Thursday, September 30, 2010

Our Lady of Storms

This was a drawing done in the studio as the remnants of a distant tropical storm battered the windows...

Our Lady of Storms, 2010, brush & ink on paper, 11" x 8.5".

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Everywhere is a gateway to someplace else

New small ink sketch on cardboard:

Everywhere is a gateway to someplace else, 2010, brush & ink on cardboard, 9.5" x 8" approx.


A deceptively powerful simple little ink drawing, I think.

Extasis, 2010, brush & ink drawing on paper, 11" x 8.5".

It also looks good in negative:

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Old Age of Time

Another meditation on the ravages of time, the end of all existence...

The Old Age of Time, 2010, acrylic & ink on cardboard, 19" x 14" approx.

Unfinished version.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Drawing of Karin Hanta

This is a pencil drawing of a friend for the Book of Souls project. Karin is a writer/translator from Austria who lives up in Vermont. She was visiting us yesterday, so I enlisted her for The Book of Souls.

Karin Hanta for The Book of Souls, 2010, black pencil on paper, 11" x 8.5".

The Visionary 2

Here is a new, larger version of my drawing The Visionary:

The Visionary version 2, 2010, acrylic & ink on cardboard, 19" x 14" approx.

And here, again, is the original ink sketch:

The Visionary, 2010, brush & ink on paper, 11" x 8.5".

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Book of Life

The Book of Life is the new, improved title for what was previously known as the Souls sketchbook.

Front cover (the angel of life and death).

The book.

Back cover (figure in a vessel).

The following explicatory text is copied from my Flickr posting that accompanied the center image of the book above:


This is a photo of The Book of Life (aka Souls sketchbook) in situ on the table in my studio where I created it.

It was originally intended to be the book wherein the images for The Book of Souls (ongoing collaboration with Tim Lowly) would be created. However, things diverged, as they do, & the images gradually (or quite quickly) became something else. However, the original name stuck, as I'd inscribed it on the forehead of the face (angel?) on the cover.

However, now that the book is complete & the dust has settled, I decided it would avoid confusion (for me, at least) to rename the book, so it's now The Book of Life...

I've renamed it thusly, as I like the sound of the name, but also:

1. George Frederic Watts, a Victorian symbolist painter that Martin Beek (Flickr associate) reminded me of, had a concept entitled "The House of Life", a building which would feature a cycle of frescos or murals depicting various aspects of the human life cycle, etc. He never realized his dream, never finding a suitable building available. So, this is for you, GFW.

2. In the Yom Kippur (which occurred recently) service, on the Day of Atonement, the names of the righteous are inscribed (metaphysically speaking) into the Book of Life before it is closed until the next year.

In any case, this sketchbook covers many aspects of human existence & beyond. Parts of it are unclear, unfinished, unsuccessful & so forth. However, I feel that it also contains some of my best work so far.

Tim Lowly:
Martin Beek:
GF Watts on Wikipedia:
GF Watts, the complete works:

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Souls sketchbook finished

It's done. Here are the final images.

Pages 149 & 150: strategic angles.

Pages 151 & 152: the sacred flame.

Pages 153 & 154: asylum.

Pages 155 & 156: life.

Pages 157 & 158: letting go.

That's it.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Souls sketchbook almost done...

And I'm thinking of retitling it to avoid confusion with The Book of Souls, my collaboration with Tim Lowly. Here are the latest double pages.

Pages 137 & 138: in the rain.

Pages 139 & 140: we are all stumbling in the dark.

Pages 141 & 142: he is pointing the way.

Pages 143 & 144: the concealed hunter versus the sleeping man.

Pages 145 & 146: hidden.

Pages 147 & 148: the two companions.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Yet more double pages

More double pages from the Souls sketchbook.

Pages 127 & 128: the tower of stolen dreams.

Pages 128 & 130: deity attacked by technology.

Pages 131 & 132: can no-one save us from the masked colossus?

Pages 133 & 134: laid low.

Pages 135 & 136: there is an angel who protects the world.

Saturday, September 18, 2010


This could be from a series depicting emotions...

Fear, 2010, brush & ink on paper, 11" x 8.5".

More from the Souls sketchbook

Here are some more double-page spreads from the Souls sketchbook...

Pages 121 & 122: and the world awakens at last.

Pages 123 & 124: fragility.

Pages 125 & 126: the billionaire and the pauper.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Totalitarian at Limner

My recent painting, The Totalitarian, is to be exhibited in the Limner Gallery (Hudson, NY) "A Show of Heads" this November:

The Totalitarian, 2010, acrylic on board, 14" x 11".

The show runs from November 4-29, 2010. Opening reception is on Saturday, Nov. 6th, from 6-8pm. Here is the gallery home page.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

A world composed of souls

I thought this double-page spread from the Souls sketchbook merited its own posting:

Souls sketchbook pages 119 & 120: a world composed of souls.

Again, this is a sketch that could easily become a large-scale painting.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

More double pages

Here are some new double-page spreads from the Souls sketchbook. The title of the book is becoming more and more a misnomer, as my thought processes extend far beyond the concept of the human soul, or far below, depending on your point of view. It strikes me that the images in this sketchbook could fuel my work for the next several decades, should I wish to convert them into more fully realized pieces.

Pages 113 & 114: the coming storm and the impending collapse of babel.

Pages 115 & 116: titanic.

pages 117 & 118: the final battle between good and evil and all else in between.

The sketchbook is now about 75% done.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Visionary

A new ink drawing of a's such an obvious theme, but I don't think I've specifically handled it before.

The Visionary, 2010, brush & ink on paper, 11" x 8.5".

I intend to do a larger drawing or painting (or both) of this.

Monday, September 13, 2010

The island where the world lay trapped

A lengthy title for one of the double-page spreads in the Souls sketchbook. It's inspired by Arnold Böcklin's "Isle of the Dead", which comes up from time to time...

The island where the world lay trapped, Souls sketchbook pages 109 & 110, brush & ink on recycled paper.

The sketchbook is now about 70% done, so the end is in sight.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Soul Between

An experiment with mirroring the image in the post below (Soul of Darkness)...

The Soul Between, ink drawing digitally duplicated & mirrored.

Soul of Darkness

New ink drawing of a head.

Soul of Darkness, 2010, brush & ink on paper, 11" x 8.5".

Above: final version — some more darks & ink wash.

Deciding the Fate of Worlds

This is a new ink sketch I did this morning. I think it may be an important piece (too early to tell) & I may revisit this or a more developed theme in the future. Basically, it describes a vision of the universe that I tend to have, that sees us (the human race) as specks of dust on an obscure ball of mud somewhere in a corner of the cosmos, subject to the will of beings or forces far beyond our comprehension...and all of this taking place within the blink of an eye...

Deciding the Fate of Worlds, 2010, brush & ink on paper, 10" x 8".

Monday, September 06, 2010

Man About to be Engulfed by a Cataclysm

This is a drawing digitally altered in Photoshop:

Man About to be Engulfed by a Cataclysm, 2010, ink drawing altered in Photoshop.

Here is the drawing in its original state:

And here is how I changed the original drawing after seeing the digital version:

Man About to be Engulfed by a Cataclysm, 2010, brush & ink drawing, 11" x 8.5".

I still prefer the digital version at this's much stronger & darker, I think.

Below is the "final" (?) version of this piece with acrylic paint additions:

Night in LA

Just a note to mention that my ink & acrylic piece on cardboard, "Night" has been acquired for a private collection in Los Angeles.

Night, 2010, ink & acrylic on cardboard, 16.75" x 13.25" approx.

Friday, September 03, 2010

More double pages from the Souls sketchbook

Here are 4 new double-page spreads from this sketchbook, which, I suppose, is a meditation on the world & what it means to be human (& presumably to have a soul). The book is approx. 11" x 8.5", so each spread is therefore approx. 11" x 17".

the prayer (the one who prays), pages 79 & 80

the conspiracy, pages 81 & 82

where the sky meets the sea, pages 83 & 84

2 lost souls separated by a mountain, pages 85 & 86