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Joseph Fiedler
Small Thrills!
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A recent smattering of various this and thats.
For Flaunt magazine feature on the backlash of exotic and inappropriate pets who maul, maim or otherwise kill their owners. For some reason, Flaunt has some killer material to work with.

Opening spread for New Orleans magazine feature about the power of the mind as healer. Acrylic and Pencil on paper with digital manipulation and misspelled name! I can remember all the way back to the first Tad Crawford books and the beginning of the whole copyright issue/awareness/GAG books, etc. At that time I recall an item whereby you could get paid double for omission of your credit. I think that the same folks who created the Bermuda Triangle came up with it but still, I wonder if I could get compensation for misspelling?? It's only one letter off but maybe the price of a spot at least? ;)

Attention Process Heads!:The actual analog portion prior to digital manipulation. Acrylic and pencil on paper. Approx 8X10 inches.

QP "spot" for the same piece was actually just another idea that got used. The calligraphy = HEALTH. Acrylic and Pencil on paper with digital manipulation.


Thumbnail suggestion, approved sketch and final art for the Los Angeles Times. This my 3rd LA Affairs piece for the Los Angeles Times. LA Affairs runs on Saturdays and is an essay about relationships, in this case a woman who has an abortive hook-up with an ex from high school. Frankly, I think that it's the best shag carpet that I've ever done and no matter what ANYBODY thinks, I love working for the LA Times! I love movies and I love the idea that film industry people can see what I've done the morning after I see what they have done! This is also why I cherish my association with New Orleans magazine -for the very same reason. Some how I imagine Irma Thomas leafing through an issue while waiting for a dental appointment and suddenly we connect but for a second. That's the thrill of my life.

“…our teacher, Mr. Rossiter, was talking about a poem by T.S. Eliot. I will never forget the look on his face, how his eyes lit up as he spoke about that poem with such fire that I understood that reading that poem had changed him. I remember thinking to myself: I want to write something that makes someone feel that.”   Dawn Tripp, The Virginia Quarterly Review
Hear what I mean; IRMA THOMAS
 
Well, that's what happened to me when I first saw Irma. Later, I actually had the pleasure of meeting  Ms. Thomas AKA "The Soul Queen of New Orleans" at the now defunct Lion's Den bar [owned by her husband who was a Leo, dig?] in New Orleans. She was a gracious host, out-a-sight entertainer and renowned beans and rice chef [she cooked them herself].  She also personally called a cab for us, shot the shit and signed numerous autographs.  I overheard that she likes her squirrel and does her own house-cleaning too! BTW There on the bar next to the humongous jar of boiled/pickled eggs was another jar labeled PIG LIPS! I should also tell you that when we arrived, there was a man beating another man's head off the curb in front of the building [which was directly across from a whole street full of Bail Bond agencies]. Normally this might discourage visitors but it was New Orleans so we hurried right on in and were none the less transported in such a way that [speaking now for myself] I'll never forget it. It was real ethos/pathos in your face. This is the "bucket list" shit you've no doubt heard about. If you don't know Irma, she was seventeen years old when she recorded "Time Is On My Side" which, when covered by the Rolling Stones, became a huge hit. And by the way, Mick and the boys ate them beans too!
QP for New Orleans magazine about the resurgence of the shipbuilding industry in the Gulf. That champagne bottle is really right on [for me]. I've worked for NO magazine for so long that I rarely provide a sketch anymore. I just usually dive right in and am almost never rebuffed. Only on rare occasions perhaps with a difficult or somehow problematic content will I ask or provide direction thumbnail options.

Also for NOM, a commemorative for two former NOPD figures who passed away recently. I love to do portraits but am rarely asked. I never thought it cool to do samples of Marilyn Monroe or Clint Eastwood in order to prove my ability. Besides, there are TONS of that type of portfolio out there and who wants to look like a lemming? I'll go off the cliff all by myself!

On A Personal Note:
Experimental drawing from film capture. I love screen grab! I forget now from which film it was taken. As I said, I love movies and I look at every kind of film genre except musicals; noir, 50's B's, 1950's anything really -Italian, J. Arthur Rank films are particularly good, and I especially am nuts about Japanese and Chinese cinema, Slasher [I actually met legendary cult icon Tom Savini and heard him say, as I introduced him to a newspaper columnist, that he was the "King of Splatter"!]. Fellow Pittsburgher Savini created the legendary special effects for George Romero's Living Dead series and also usually appears in Quentin Tarantino films, "Django Unchained", "Grindhouse" and also Robert Rodriquez's "From Dusk till Dawn"], Arabic, African, etc.... Tran Anh Hung's French/Vietnamese "The Scent of Green Papaya" is my favorite film next to Bavarian Werner Herzog's "The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser". Well I'm not too nuts about Bollywood although as a cultural phenomena, it's pretty interesting. High to low, I'm OK!

Personal painting; Golden Bear, 24X30, Acrylic and Pencil on Stonehenge Paper. Ursus Horribilis is an extinct Grizzly bear known as the Golden bear and is our California state flag. I look at the state flag every hour of the waking day as it hangs just off my studio deck so I figured what the heck.

Process shots of the bear drawing. I'm really exceptionally undisciplined regarding the documenting of process. I nearly ALWAYS get lost and forget a step or two. I'm glad though that I AM able to get lost and constantly strive for "lost-ness". I've never been particularly interested in process myself [maybe when I was 18 I had an infatuation with CRAFT -for awhile] but the recent emphasis on transparency seems to demand it which is a kind of double edged sword; yes you can learn from it but perhaps it's a bit too much -like a crutch? Like looking for the man behind the curtain? I guess you could say it's the difference between a well conceived, beautiful shot of erotica and a full beaver. Besides, it reminds me of the mindset that thinks art is just a series of mechanical techniques that can be derived from a tutorial video. Can't. But I do think that PROCESS, not THE process is what it's all about. I can only visualize so far in my mind alone -even given that I have a better than average imagination -but actually what really happens is that once I commit marks on paper, then THEY take over and guide the piece home to the "finish". I think that it's a big mistake is to start out with the idea of a style in mind a priori, which to me seems to attempt to replicate something which, in a way, already exists just like like filling in the lines and coloring. Make any sense? The whole experience is a journey of discovery; the same discovery that I made as a child exploring the world. I mean, isn't that the fun part? Isn't that what we're paid to do, get lost? From what I understand, Daniel Day-Lewis is especially adept at it.

Personal painting; Quail, 24X30, Acrylic and Pencil on Stonehenge Paper. The California Quail is our state bird. I'm not exactly sure what it is but I love to draw birds. Have you ever seen a bevy of Quail? To me they look almost ecclesiastical bobbing their little necks and scooting here and there...

Found this recently in the NYTs about the musician John Zorn. Those of you who are only 30 will have to wait another 30 years to erase doubts!

By the By, I've been told by an art director whom I've worked with for nearly 20 years that he visists DRAWGER every day yet he doesn't comment. I've ask our "honorable" director if there's a way to track that kind of information but he hasn't responded to 3+ Emails!! Not sure why -so I pose it here.  Anybody know?
 
Thanks in advance and keep those cards and letters coming in boys and girls! ;)


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Fiedler is teaching at TutorMill, an online mentoring site for students of illustration!