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Pic #979

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What is 2 + 5? :

Nicholas Obrien @ Thursday, December 29th 2011, 11:07 PM
Really enjoy the background palette, so much so I kind of wish that it was in the foreground
paul @ Friday, December 30th 2011, 12:22 AM
Like your watercolors and the uncut diamond!
Tom Moody @ Friday, December 30th 2011, 10:17 PM
Thanks, Nicholas,
The theory (such as it is) is that having an overpowering ugly R Crumb sort of thing in the foreground makes the background more tantalizing, but your wish is noted. This was also the idea behind my Sabrina Ratte remix, which I deleted because (i) I want to keep all my CCDS drawings the same 500 x 500 format and (ii) a variety of other reasons (like, you could only remix her work if you imitated her exact style and made it "beautiful"? - couldn't a self-consciously "gnarly" remix be a critique of a pristine style?).
Nicholas Obrien @ Sunday, January 1st 2012, 3:44 PM
I see your point Tom,
Concealing the background to make it more "tantalizing" is an interesting method, but I wonder if it is too deliberately distracting. It's not that I don't see the play between foreground and background, but instead I don't know why "the beautiful" has to be obfuscated. Are you drawing inspiration from somewhere that might help me understand the work better? Or at least appreciate the technique as you intend? I certainly think that the "gnarly" can be a an adequate means of a critique, "dirt-style" is precisely all about this. But maybe a clash isn't necessary between central (foreground) attention and peripheral (background attention)? I'm not sure though... as I type I begin to see more where you might be coming from.
Sara Ludy @ Sunday, January 1st 2012, 10:20 PM
I really love the drawing. I'd prefer to see more gnarled things.
Tom Moody @ Monday, January 2nd 2012, 8:45 AM
Thanks, Nicholas and Sara,
Some kind of tension or contradiction guarantees that no one can call the work "decorative"--a criticism aimed at some of the neo digital painting sites. It doesn't always have to be this blatant to make the point. To some extent we're figuring out what the Oekaki-style program (used by this site) is good for, art-wise or otherwise. One of the things I like is that there are essentially two palettes - one where you can make conventional "liquid" strokes and one for black and white "fill" patterns that in the early days of digital image-making were used as a stand-in for color and brushwork. Sometimes it's tempting to pit the two against each other, which means "cartoon vs paint," dirt-style vs quasi-refined in the same image. People here are certainly taking more subtle approaches and I might too, occasionally. Just not in this one!
Sabrina Ratte @ Monday, January 2nd 2012, 2:30 PM
Hi Tom, I just want to say that I liked your remix of my drawing! The idea was also to see how different styles and approaches can meet...
Nicholas Obrien @ Monday, January 2nd 2012, 4:27 PM
I deeply sympathize with the desire to resists the decorative. I struggle with that in drawing/painting in general, and was what lead to my initial abandonment of that medium early on in my artistic development. However, I find that these tools allow me to re-aestheticize my practice in a way that has been so remote over the past couple of years (to which I am thankful). I've opted to go about this through a different sort of clash, one that resists the opportunity for the maximal and abstract and have instead gone toward the subtle and/or narrative. But, as you've mentioned, this is not the only way to use the tools in this site for art-making/otherwise expression. "Cartoon vs Paint" is a territory that I'm fairly ill-equipped to contend with, so I've found my own comfort zone of working against the decorative - even if aesthetically I haven't deviated enough away from that tendency. As always, though, the exposition of these various modes of discovery and process are always enticing to me!
Tom Moody @ Monday, January 2nd 2012, 9:05 PM
Thanks, Sabrina, I was impressed to open that drawing up and see all the layers (1 or 2 is the most I can handle).
Nicholas, I'm a little surprised that with your Chicago background you didn't get a steady dose of "cartoon vs paint" in school--Chicago Imagism being partly a reaction to NY School so-called purity. (Robert Storr had a theory that Jeff Koons' polychromed kitsch sculptures were a kind of stealth Imagism, rather than the commodity critique they were largely presumed to be, because Koons had been a studio assistant of Ed Paschke's.) Has Imagism passed out of the SAIC arsenal of subversive strategies? They used to be kind of militant about it there.
Nicholas Obrien @ Wednesday, January 4th 2012, 10:30 AM
Tom Moody @ Wednesday, January 4th 2012, 2:02 PM
Philip Guston's path from sensitive abstraction to discordant cartoons would be another precedent. You could call that a "transition to the narrative" (his peers certainly thought so) but then the stories consist of barely-comprehensible private symbols (a landscape of shoe-bottoms, a giant half-turned face with bloodshot eye), so it's not so cut-and-dried as that. I think these old battles might be pretty passe if we were painting and drawing but digital tools (such as Chibi-Paint!) have "re-problematized" the subject matter, as they say in the academy.
Jeremiah Johnson @ Thursday, January 5th 2012, 4:52 PM
Computers Club Reproblematizing Society
Sterling Crispin @ Friday, January 13th 2012, 3:20 AM
free problems