Scott Bakal
February 2007
Late at night for the last week when I am done with other stuff, I've been putzing around with this from my previous post as a full color piece.  Not sure if it is completely done at the moment but I like where it is now.
When working on it, I decided to use some colors that while not cliche for the 70's, reminded me of the decor/colors in my house when I was young.
Six Children Die
I was working on a series of drawings for a cover and 3 interiors over the weekend for a new client and got side tracked.
I was reading some articles Saturday morning on while having the usual cup of Earl Grey and this story jumped out at me.  Last night, I started noodling around with some images in the sketchbook thinking about the article while eating Fiery Habanero Doritos and watching Law & Order: Criminal Intent again.  This is what came out of the pen around midnight.
Woman, 6 Children Die In Pa. House Fire
WAYNESBURG, Pa. -- Fire swept through a house in southwestern Pennsylvania early Saturday, killing six young children and a woman and injuring one other person, state police said.
Several people in the house were able to escape, state Trooper Brian Burden said.
Police said the young victims were four girls ages 4, 9, 7 and 10, and two boys ages 2 and 3. Authorities said the woman was the mother of three of the children.
Robert Husner, who was staying in the home, said Joshua Arthur Sr., the father of three of the children, woke him and the two of them tried to rescue all six children, who were sleeping in at least three separate bedrooms.
"The flames were just too high," said Husner, 27. "I couldn't get in, there was so much smoke."
The home's gas furnace was not working so the residents were using space heaters throughout the home to keep warm, Husner said. Authorities said it was unclear whether they contributed to the fire, which was being investigated by a state police fire marshal.
State police identified the victims as Rebecca Eddy, 26, and her children Tiffany Blake, 10, Rebecca Blake, 9, and Diamond Blake, 7; and Arthur's children, Donna Jo Arthur, 5, Joshua Arthur Jr., 3, and Christopher Arthur, 2. Arthur was listed in serious condition at Mercy Hospital in Pittsburgh. Husner and two other people escaped from the flames, authorities aid.
Firefighters arrived at 3:15 a.m. and found flames 10 to 15 feet high coming from the split-level house, Waynesburg Volunteer Fire Company Chief Larry Marshall said.
"Fire was shooting out all the windows and doors," Marshall said. The blaze was under control in about 30 minutes, "but it was too late," he said.
Neighbor Mike Vukmanic, 23, who lives about 100 yards away, said he called 911 after he heard "a screaming, pounding noise" and looked out to see the home's back door open and flames inside.
A few minutes later, Vukmanic said, "it was just engulfed."
Vukmanic's stepfather, Tony Simonetti, ran to the house and found a man who told him there were people inside.
"I looked. There was no way to get into the house," Simonetti said.
Waynesburg is in rural southwestern Pennsylvania about 35 miles from Pittsburgh.

Poe (with bonus track)
Edgar Allen Poe
In the spirit of streams of portraits that get posted every now and again, here is a recent painting of Mr. Edgar Allen Poe.  Poe is a pretty common portrait to do but he's got that mystery around him and his deshevelled look makes him look a little overly-artsy which is all the Quoth the Raven stuff helps....
Every painting I do has a 'soundtrack'.  A song or album that I end of playing over and over again for hours because it just works so well with what I am doing.  I am guessing, many others sort of have a similar habit.
In this case, it was Beethoven's 7th Symphony, Movement #2.  I had this one going all day even when I wasn't working.  Not only arguably one on my favorite pieces of music, but to me, it seemed to work right when doing this one.
So here's is a little Monday morning mood music to have with your coffee.
In progress.
Very early sketches working out Poe's features...what a noggin!
" a bird."
Acrylic on board | 6x9"

I haven’t posted new art in a while.  Just lurking with a spurt of posts here and there and I apologize that I haven’t posted on some of your additions, my dear friends.  I am reading them though!  By the way, special nod to Kroninger for being the nicest guy in the world.

I have been finding myself a lot more introspective lately and it isn’t something surprising either.  The last couple of months have been incredibly humbling.  I don’t know about everyone else but sometimes a series of things happen in life that sort of culminate into drastic changes and one can never be sure what the change is or will be but you know it is going to happen and you are very aware of it.

In simple terms since December, my Mother has started dialysis (59 years old) with the hopes of a kidney transplant, she will be having an eye operation (again) to prevent her from going blind from diabetes, my cousin recently had a hysterectomy because of cancer and just this week found a new lump on her neck (36 years old), three days after her operation, my friend Dorinda (62 years old) has a stroke which rendered her brain dead therefore the family decided to pull the plug a day or so later, and another artist friend (40 years old) has breast cancer.  This is to name just a few things going on around here...there's more but that's enough to get an idea. 

This stuff isn’t meant to grab sympathy.  These things happen in life and I think one should expect it.  What I am pointing to in telling you this is that incredibly severe occurrences around you with people your love can really change ones way of thinking and sometimes, free a person from fears and habits that normally one would find themselves wrapped in.  That is not to say or to tell people to ‘look at the big picture’ and never mind about the small things.  I feel that life is made up mostly of the small little details that develop the bigger picture.  You can’t have a wing without feathers. So… Art is about expression.  After many instances of these dark occurrences, I looked out of this hole of sadness of what is going on around me and saw some light.  I turned inward and drew.  Then…I painted.  I didn’t know where I would come out of the hole but this is what it looked like.  I’ve done a few new personal pieces like this and I am more excited than I have been in a long time about my work.  And, because of what's been going on, I am seeing parts of life and in the case of this post, art in a new way.
Well, that is my ‘fartist’ statement for the week. (fine+artist)

Thumbnail created on train.
Rough created on couch watching Law & Order.
Blitzkrieg Bop
Joey Ramone
Well, alright folks...yet another Ramone to add to the collection collecting here on the front pages of The Drawger.
Bam, bam, buh-bam...
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Bakal is teaching at TutorMill, an online mentoring site for students of illustration!