Archive for painting

Mojo and My Next Painting

Posted in Art, esoterica, etsy, music with tags , , , , , , on November 20, 2008 by darcyarts

mewavemagicIt took me years to understand that the notion of inspiration could be a slippery slope where creativity is concerned.

“I believe in magic. Why? Because it is so quick . . .”*

If we wait to be impelled by mysterious forces before we begin to practice our craft well, we don’t, practice.

It took me a very long time to conquer my distaste for making a mess. I was loathe to do it wrong the first time I tried so I never tried. I finally realized time’s a wasting and I took the failure bull by the horns.

By it’s very nature diving into a new project is guaranteed to produce a uncertain amount of mess.

Now I take the risk but believe it or not I am a cautious person. I have trepidation as I take pen, paint brush or keyboard in hand. In the case of my top hat (above) it took leather and glue to lay down something new.

I dream of something I want to bring into the physical world, and that journey, by way of materials and a fake-it-till-you-make-it know how is often a bumby ride. But that’s the fun of it. I never know how a thing will turn out.

It took me a good week to make this top hat because I’d never done it before. I bungled the steps, I fretted over it’s roughness but I pushed on. I had to add a star to cover a blemish.


The actual sequence of steps in the process of top-hat making were revealed to me through my mistakes. Now I know the right order. Next time it will go  more smoothly.

And Lordy doesn’t it feel new each time? I face the same amount of risk with each creation. It’s a new set of circumstances each time.

What’s next? A painting of Arthur Lee.


Having read the 33 1/3 Forever Changes and having noted my impressions here while listening to the Rhino Love collection while doing so, I was impelled to make the sketch of Arthur. 

Even though I know that relying on inspiration can be a detriment to getting one’s thing on and even though I would like to start painting projects in a more rational way, the truth is that I am “moved” by my passions to put an image onto a board.

I can think of a number of good subjects and have in the past few weeks catalogued a number of them, but I did not pick up the pencil during this vacation until I was feeling a strong desire to bring this particular face into the physical world.

I have been deeply moved by music over the course of my life. It makes sense that a lot of the faces I’ve been “moved” to portray are the faces of musicians.

Below are links to the portrait prints at

I’ve painted Frank Zappa, Jeffrey Lee Pierce twice, sorta David Bowie, Queens of the Stone Age’s Josh Homme, Elliott Smith, Pete TownshendGram Parsons, Howling Wolf, and Brian Jonestown Massacre’s Anton Newcombe.

There is a long list of faces I’ve still got to manage: Pamela Des Barres, Linda Thompson, Lucinda Williams, Victoria Williams, Patti Smith. Joni Mitchell, Odetta — I need to do more women. Poison Ivy and Lux interior are high on my list. So are Marc Bolan, Jerry Garcia, Joey Ramone, all the boys and girls who struggled and made their best effort and died young  . . . the list could go on forever.

Sometimes if the feelings are too intense that kind of clouds my abilitiy to deal with the physical necessities of working with real-world elements. I guess I get star-blind or love-blind or something. I couldn’t write with a clear, analytical head about Mark Twain when I was in college because I love him to a degree that is unreasonable. I have been unable to paint a portrait of Jeff Buckley for the same reason. If I painted portraits in an order related to the number of hours I have listened to a particular artist Jeff would be first on the list. The members of X would be next. I painted Gun Club’s Jeffrey Lee Pierce.

I painted John Doe but was disappointed with the result.


I’ve got a few of these paintings.

I like my James Brown but, early on I mod podged with a glossy finish. Bad move for photos:





My Brian Eno’s not bad but in all three I used shiny materials that I do not know how to photograph without shine, glare, light bounce.

Love that glitter! I learned, though.

These were some of my earliest paintings.





My biggest diappointment was my Bob Dylan. I found a beautiful picture that I think everyone loves and even though the angle of the face, with Mr. D looking down, is pretty much outside my skill-set to pull off accurately I didn’t let that stop me.

I loved the challenge of the curly hair, too.

I am currently listening to the Five Royals. Early R and B. Too Cool.

“My baby’s got the best washing machine in town. Ooh, Ee, what a machine.”

This disc is a great mix of wonderful, sincere gospel inspired ballads and these sweet, funny, raunchy tunes. They rocked.















*lyrics by Arthur Lee from”The Red Telephone” on Forever Changes.

Something Light

Posted in Art, dreams, etsy, nature, television with tags , , , , on July 21, 2008 by darcyarts

Hey boys and girls this is my 69th post!

This image will be the transitional link between my previous bio post and this fresh one.

The painting is called “70s San Francisco Krishna Boy.” I painted it here in this house a few months after we moved in in 2006. I did’t get started until 2007. It took me a while to feel comfortable.

This image was an attempt to evoke certain parts of my memories of San Francisco. Sometimes I wish I could see things with a stranger’s eyes just to know how others perceive the things I make. This image has been viewed more than any other I have posted on etsy.

I added the mod flowers after seeing perfect examples of that kind of design in a waterfront cafe scene while watching Streets of San Francisco.

I was driving on Churn Creek Road near Target and the Food Maxx the other day. I was stopped at the light and I noticed a large truck hauling chicken to market. The sides of the truck had lovely pastel landscapes painted on them. The truck pulled into a loading bay and I snapped these photos.

You can see the rivets where the panels are connected.

I liked the juxtaposition of the dreamy pastel landscape painted on the metal sheets of the trailer. I think I liked the fact that it was a chicken product too.

In my philosophical examination of killing animals for food I have concretely decided that I could kill for chicken.

Part of the decision was knowing that my body does not process soy and other beans well enough to use it as a replacement for meat.

I could not kill a cow, or deer, or any large animal unless it was a very drastic Into the Wilderness type situation but I could learn to kill chickens and even rabbits who are strange and often not very nice creatures despite all of Beatrix Potter’s brilliant anthropomorphism.

I love chicken.

This classic fried chicken photo is from a southern fried blog called Varmintbites. If you click on their home page you will see amazing photos from a trip to Alaska.

What a coincidence. I was thinking as I wrote about chicken that I love salmon just as much and have fantasized about being a big ol’ bear living in the north. I could reach my big paw into the river and fish out a fresh, wet salmon and feast.

She Just Stared

Posted in Art, socialization with tags , , , on June 24, 2008 by darcyarts

There were some strange critters at the San Francisco Nordstrom’s the last time I was there.

The mannequins were haunted, shiny and captivating. The lighting in the store, always one of my favorite elements of the Nord’s experience, was very theatrical. I wanted to be in the strange, hypnotic atmosphere once again.

I’d missed these palaces of consumerism living in Redding so long. None of the department store here have good lighting. Not one is even close to a big city blowout of dazzling interior lights.

The Nordstrom’s in downtown Seattle was great. They had the best boots anywhere.

The Nord’s in the super mall in Orange County was hypno-spectacular. I remember becoming transfixed there by a strand of grey gypsy pearls, while nearby, women lined up at the makeup counter to shell out $75 on a tiny jar of eye cream. I’ll admit I loved Shishedo. They had the best lip gloss. I could afford lip gloss on a waitresses salary and croissants, chocolate croissants, from the Magic Pan. Evil. That was before I managed to completely exorcise the last fragments of the advertising-imbedded notion that I could buy my way to beauty and wholeness.

Trippin’ on the pastels last week I combined these three photo images for a potential girlie, cutesy post card set.

I took the photos of the gummi fruit snacks boxes at Food Maxx.

The rose is from my yard. In addition to the roses that were already here we have large pots of veggies growing. We’ll have everything we need to make salsa for days.

I watered early this morning before the wind shifted and pushed the thick smoke back into town and me into the safety of the air conditioning. I hope everyone in the outlying area is safe.

Pastels will make us all feel better.


 Maybe I should make a postcard from my “dick” matchbox.

Maybe that will make us all feel better.

I made a series of decorated matchboxes about three years ago or has it been four now.

I was easing my way toward trying my hand at painting. I think I’m too lazy to attempt anything that I do not have a burning desire to see through the filter of my own perception.

 The “dick” matchbox contained a thoughtful and handy gift inside. All my matchboxes did but this was probably the most practical and theme oriented.

I imagined selling a batch to a quirky store on Castro Street. I’ll keep refining the idea and make it happen some day. A girl has to have a dream.