Steve Wacksman
March 2010
Some Famous Mugs
Director Paul Greengrass and Matt Damon
Portraiture and likenesses are relatively new to me. I've been slinging ink for a while now (first gig was in 1990 or thereabouts. I flubbed it. Ancient history) so I've had to provide a likeness here or there, natch. But it's been an infrequent request on the part of my (lovely,talented and remarkably good-looking) clientele. A while back I decided - full disclosure, I'd lost my third monthly gig and was a bit panicked - to concentrate on likenesses. I did a bunch, put 'em out there and let the people say what they would. Mostly what they said was nice, but the enthusiasm wasn't exactly blowing my wig back.
Director Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio.
Don't know how or why, but at some point it kinda clicked. I started seeing the bigger picture; the broader shapes. I could compare my drawings to the subject and see where I'd made mistakes. Obviously some people are easier to draw than others (hello, Marty Scorsese and his Marty Scorsese eyebrows) and beautiful women are amongst the hardest to draw as they all essentially look exactly alike, all smiles and eyes and flowing hair. But I think I'm getting better at it and if you don't agree, please keep it to yourself. Remember, it's nice to be important but it's important to be nice.
Director Tim Burton and fedora enthusiast Johnny Depp
Thanks to Dale Stephanos, who took time out from pumping out his leaky basement to snap a pic. Wotta guy!
These drawings ran yesterday in the venerable news daily the Boston Globe. The AD was Jane Martin. Drawing pictures for a living a pretty good racket, but some jobs are just fun. This was one of them; I actually caught myself chuckling a bit while working on these.
The Milliner's Campaign
It would be difficult to pinpoint exactly from whence these images were born. There's several threads running through them: a nod to Russian folk art, an abiding interest in fashion, thoughts about oppression both political and otherwise. The title of this series is a nod to my paternal grandmother Sophie, who was a Russian immigrant and a milliner. She had a millinery shop in Cincinnati in the early 1940s and it is suspected that, in the looming shadow of it's impending failure, she set it ablaze for the insurance money.
As these images were being developed, I imagined large swaths of old-growth evergreens and frost on the ground. I envisioned secret meetings among the pines; whispered plans delivered in the darkest shadows of the deepest forests.
Secrets should be kept at all costs.
All creatures work together so that none shall perish alone. Fleet of foot and strong of heart; silent as a field mouse and with the ferocity of a bear. Our lips will remain sealed tight, but today the breaking of chains will be heard.
And some, many miles away, will feel it in their hearts.
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