Back in 1989, I was a busy horror book cover artist hoping to move into editorial. I was trained as a trompe l'oeil painter at Paier College of Art as well as a portrait painter. So, I was living in Philadelphia, 24, and got a call to do a TIME cover. They had a Gilbert Stewart portrait of George Washington that they wanted a tear on. Rudy Hogland was the head AD at the time but I worked with Arthur Hochstein. I said that I needed to paint many tears so that they could drop the correct key down on the portrait. Photoshop was not yet a tool commonly used. So, I painted around 10 tears on a panel. One was chosen and I had my first cover of Time, shared with Gilbert Stewart. The tears are in the National Gallery. It took a while to get TIME to consider me for more than a tear until I began doing covers in the early 90's. They are the juice no other job can compare to for me. I have actually lost track of how many I've done and how many have run. I think it's healthy for me to not keep track.
Recently TIME has undergone a redesign. For most of us, when a client we like switches ADs or Managing Editors or gets redesigned, we get anxious. Therefore, it was a pleasant and poignant surprise to hear Arthur call this week and ask me to paint a tear for the cover.
A water drop is a formula and if you need to place one on a photo in 2007, Photoshop is the answer. So I painted several tears and one was chosen and is now on the cover of the redesign, running down Reagan's rosy cheek.
It was fun to do and a cool bookend. The first cover was with the same sized logo.
Just a few weeks ago at UARTS in Philadelphia, I painted some water drops on the wall, demonstrating artistic graffiti. When I was at Paier College it was a past time of my pal Steve Brennan and I to paint trompe l'oeil gags around the studio. I did a successful wall outlet that is still there 20 years later. Another thing was painting holes in the walls, pencil shavings on the floor and a quarter. Watching the custodian sweep over and over the pencil shavings was the highest form of praise a realist can get.
I still find great joy out of fooling the eye.
October 23rd, 1989. Not bad, but I would do a better job today.
I feel quite honored to be part of a segment on FOX and Friends this morning. Apparently you can put a rain cloud over Cheney's head but you can't suggest that Ronald Reagan would be disappointed with the GOP in 2007. IS it that Reagan would NEVER cry? Is crying not manly?
I can't put the feed here, but go to this address and hear the Fox folks froth.
Peggy Noonan had a go at this
as did Steven Colbert, and Charlie Rose.