The last time they tried it on we had to summon our Blitz spirit, roll up our sleeves and really get to work. The only thing that saved us then was a reanimated Winston Churchill who nobly sacrificed himself in a ball of atomic flame in a bid to stop the Nazi scourge once and for all. Somehow they live on. And now they’re back – and they won’t take ‘nein’ for an answer!
I’m going to get onto the Syfy channel right now and see if they want the rights. If they did Sharknado I think I’m in with a decent chance…
There I was doing a bit of a spring clean in my studio/shed when I come across some old canvases and stencils behind a paint splattered table top. As it was Sunday and there’s always something better to do that tidying up I decided to put all my finds to good use. With the background already largely finished on this one a somewhat ghostly horse suggested itself for reasons best known to the muse. A little rummaging through the stencils and I’d found just the one to get on there. Once it was done I thought a little text around the edge to give it a little lift was all that was needed. The text reads:
‘And I heard, as it were, the noise of thunder. One of the four beasts saying ‘Come and see’. And I saw. And behold a pale horse…’
As the canvas is old and a little cracked from winter in the shed I’m thinking the street is the best place for this bad lad. Now if I can just find somewhere suitable…
With the phrase ‘like a boss’ in common parlance you may be under the false impression this piece is about someone who does stuff really well (hence ‘like a boss’) when in fact in this case I’m referring to the more old school definition of someone who owns your time and tells you what to do whilst simultaneously praising your efforts to your face and taking any credit for it behind your back. You know the guy. If you’ve never worked for such a person then aren’t you just the lucky one? Anyway, you can tell he’s a boss because of his dead eyed stare, heart of ice, pockets of cash, f*!k you attitude and his legs full of bitterness and lost hope. And that’s what makes them tick.
As it’s cold and miserable outside and the opportunities for painting are few and far between we thought we could cheer ourselves up with a little round up of our favourite pieces from the last year. So here they are (in no particular order):
This means war! – what else are you meant to do when you see a bit of street furniture that has been knocked over by a car? – in Brixton
Give us your daily bread! Seagulls. They’re just avian yobs after all your food. – painted in Brixton
She’s like the wind – on a reclaimed canvas. Now sold.
Paint & Beer 2015 – painted in Amsterdam
We are all in the gutter – from an Oscar Wilde quote – painted on the Isle of Man
Glen Fandango – he’s a hard drinking goat/human hybrid. Don’t ask – painted in London
Temper Tantrum – painted in London – featuring an acrylic angry child and matching shadow monster
Mr Snuffles – Lila and her imaginary dog Mr Snuffles – painted in London
Beware Super S! – painted in London. Super S copyrighted the letter S back in the 80’s and now he’s out to sue…
The Greenbeard Effect – from UPfest 2015 complete with foliage beard and LED eyes
For any more info on any of the pics you can visit our flickr page at http://www.flickr.com/id-iom.
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If you’ve ever seen Hitchcock’s ‘The Birds’ then you’ll probably have some inkling of what ornithophobia is. It’s a type of specific phobia based on an irrational fear of birds. The thing is I don’t have ornithophobia and I don’t even know anyone with it (as sometimes these phobia’s can be learned responses). I put sole responsibility for this picture on the muse…
There I was with a tatty old canvas (that originally had some suitably vile printed picture of a rose on it) when the idea of painting a bird popped in to my abnormally small mammalian brain. And who am I to go against the grain? After looking at said bird the muse changed tact and sent me off trying to write some pithy if not indulgent text for the piece. After some sitting around drinking tea I came up with:
They hop from branch to branch
before they disappear
to see the birds
and hear their song
will always bring me fear
After reading that little ditty I think we can all agree that the Poet Laureate has nothing to worry about…
The Friend Zone
I think ‘Friend Zone’ should have some accompanying theme music. I imagine it would be some kind of weird 70’s disco affair but perhaps that’s just me. The lady in this piece was going to be used in a commission but (doh!) I didn’t read the brief properly and soon realised that it wouldn’t work. That doesn’t mean she had to go to waste though. All it would take is a little love and attention and she would be good to go for something a little different. So i decided to change the sentiment from the commission piece and mix it up a little. The commission was to do with the moments before coupling whereas this piece shows the ramifications of what can happen after the deed is done. Unlucky pal, you’ve just been relegated to the Friend Zone…
The Look of Love
Whilst back at Christmas my mum asked if we could come up with a little gift for a wedding that she was going to. This seemed like a ideal way to while away some time between the morning and afternoon downpours. Firstly we had to ascertain a few important facts about the soon-to-be-wed couple so set about asking my mum some important questions like ‘Who, what, where and when?’ All we received in response was the enigmatic reply ‘Me and now, the wedding is in two days!’
As brief’s for commissions go it’s not exactly much to work with but she didn’t seem inclined to supply us any further information. Anyway, this is exactly what we came up with for such a vague brief. I can’t be sure what they’ll think of it but can only wish them and the piece all the best for the future….
Licking the longtail
As we’ve already mentioned the weather at home this Christmas was a complete wash out but, as I’m sure we all know, ‘the devil makes work for idle hands’ so we thought it best to at least pretend to do some work and this is a case in point. There’s not much to say about this apart from I think this is what happens when you start doodling whilst Ratatouille is on in the background. The r@t, longtail or ringy is a creature steeped in superstition on the island and it is bad luck to even say the name. So, you might ask yourself ‘what on earth is he thinking? Is he trying to ruin Christmas?’ Who knows? Nothing particularly bad happened though so I’ll just leave it with you to decide.
If you’ve got the inclination then I’ve got the crime
‘I’ve got the brains, you’ve got the looks, Let’s make lots of money’. So sang the Pet Shop Boys in their seminal 1986 track ‘Opportunities’. They also went on to inform us that if we’ve got the inclination then they’ve got the crime (you can check youtube if you don’t belive me):
Anyway, there we were driving around the Isle of Man with our older brother and some of his kids when this song came on the stereo. Somehow the line resonated in my tiny brain and the next thing you know a plan had formed. I just needed to get home to execute it before the idea faded. I had the beginnings of the idea down on paper when we got stuck trying to figure out what font to use. Luckily that was when my mum walks in with an armful of wrapping paper and lightning struck once again and it was decided we’d use her spidery handwriting as the basis for the piece. A swift scrawl and an extra couple of moves later with a red crayon and some silver leaf and we were on the home straight. And that’s how easy it can be. Sometimes.
Rain pretty much stopped play entirely whilst we were at home for Christmas. Sedating myself with stencil cutting and animated movies seemed like the best option until I had a brainwave and decided to ascertain whether there was anywhere within the house I could paint. A quick survey revealed a wall in the attic that seemed suitable to me and, surprisingly, my mum agreed that it could do with a lick of paint. Before she’d even finished the sentence I was up and getting the paints out.
The final result of a couple of days work is ‘The Girl in the Attic’ which proved tricky to paint as the room had no electricity so we could only paint in the very limited daylight hours (I generously say daylight as it was dark gray and raining 99% of the time) and then annoyingly difficult to photograph due to the cramped conditions and the aforementioned crappy light. I’d like to think however that it’s a better use of my time than sitting on the sofa eating whatever was to hand though.