Back to painting in the studio today. Working on a commission that is to be a Christmas present. I really appreciate the amount of time the buyer gave me to complete this job. I finished the rendering yesterday and will start blocking in the color today. The rest will go surprisingly quickly. As my wife says, after the picture is drawn, it’s pretty much like a paint by number thing.
I’ve opened Pandora on the computer and have one of my usual stations, Miles Davis, on. As I paint, the computer will have the reference photo on the screen, I’m not showing that now, Christmas present and all. I often paint to jazz. Something I was introduced to by an old friend and mentor. Royal was a professional artist back when I was growing up in Monmouth, Il. He was a member of the same church my family attended; we had grown to know him pretty well. He judged one of my high school art competitions and that’s where he first saw my art. Something about it impressed him. Soon he invited me to his studio, an invitation I accepted with a lot of excitement. My memory of his studio is a mish-mash of ink, paper, paints, drafting tools and Jazz. He had been a jazz musician before The War and was still a passionate lover of the music. After that we often talked of art and jazz. When I went to college, he encouraged me to go into art as a profession, but of course I was on my way to being a scientist. However, 35 years later, his voice was one I remembered when I was trying to decide what to do with myself after I had been laid off from science and no other job seemed to be forth coming. Royal is a longtime gone now, I miss him. I’d like to think he would approve of what I’m doing now…and my choice in music.