Wednesday, November 14, 2007

November 14, 2007
Closing in on 2,000 posts (this one is 1,999). It's been a ton of fun, but I may soon be done (too busy, not enough time to do it right).

Meanwhile, I am still cleaning and filing art stuff in the garage. Here's a subject that was a large part of my life in the late seventies: the phenom swept through Arizona, starting in Tucson and migrating to Phoenix. Looking back, it was a natural progression from the Byrds' Sweetheart of The Rodeo and the Eagles' Take It Easy. The dance craze captured almost everyone from hick hipsters to hippie tree huggers. Ironically, it was rejected by rodeo cowboy types (they would embrace it like so many other trends, long after it became passe to the hipsters). Ladies and Gentlemen, The Country Swingers:

I believe these two dancers were poached from one of the first cover photo shoots I art directed for New Times in late 1978. Not too bad. Of course I had excellent photo reference. I'm using Grafix Art Board which has two hidden tones, a light gray and a darker, mid-tone to simulate halftones for newspaper reproduction. Most editorial cartoonist used it in those days from Oliphant to McNelly to Benson. Not sure if it's still in use.

One thing that is still in use is the opaque projector, whereby many artists, including myself, cheat by projecting existing photos and artwork and then tracing the image onto illustration board or canvas. Here is a cute comment on that phenom, in a piece I did on how to be an successful Cowboy Artist:

Another piece of art I did on artists is this image (actually two pieces, I was trying to save paper and did two scenes on it).It portrays the fantasy of what every kid wants when they think of becoming an artist: sleep 'til noon (thus the pajamas), sleep on a waterbed (the heighth of hipness at that time) with a beautiful model (seen tickling my, I mean, someone's feet):

And a final dig at the slew of wannabe Cowboy Artists:

The proofs for the Source Book are in and I need to go take a gander. Going up the hill to Prescott at two for a secret session with the Top Secret Writer. Home stretch on the Mickey Free story. Gee, I wonder who might like to make the Mickey Free and Apache Kid story into a movie?

"We still want to make a real period Western, with no cars and in black and white. But it might be a little narrow."
—Joel Coen, of the Coen brothers, in The New York Times Magazine

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