Another older project. Began it this past summer at the same time I began the El Azteca painting. Got bogged down in them so decided to put them away until a later date. If I do a few more down this vein I’ll end up unintentionally with a restaurant series.
There is something inviting about painting a bunch of strangers gathered together at a place to eat. What were their plans for afterwards? Their relationships? What were they discussing? From what work were they taking a break? But then with El Azteca when doing the painting I stripped all the people out so the patio was empty. The patio was actually filled with people but there was something about them all that made the place look empty anyway. So I took them out.
Photo collage, digital painting
Light box enlargement
One of those things where you finish it and only a long while later do you notice everything that is wrong with it.
Went for an old postcard colors look with this one. My computer is still screwing up and scratched this image for me once. I’d saved it and when I opened it the next day one of the layers was gone and a primary layer was 3/4 covered over with what looked like an overlay of black as if done in absolutely uniform horizontal strokes of one of the larger wet media brushes. So it was not completely saturated but was still ruined. Don’t know what in the world happened except but apparently something fouled when I was saving it. Fortunately I didn’t have to start completely over again. The palms and wall and cactus were intact on a couple of other layers, but the sky and part of the evergreens had been ruined and the ground was gone.
Now for some far more glamorous views of La Cita. Here is what the restaurant looked like in 2003, at the website of Richard Franke. And another 2003 view of it at the website of a Scott Granneman. Opheliate’s photostream at Flickr gives this view, uploaded Jan 2006. And here it is back in the day of the land cruisers.
Is La Cita still open? It didn’t look very open when we passed by it in Sep of 2005. It appeared to be shut down.
Phoenix, Suburban Study
Digital painting 2006
The photograph on which the painting is based was taken back in the early 90s and I can’t remember where but it would have been either Colorado or Wyoming (definitely someplace with close access to snow as snowmobiles were being sold). I looked at the listing of Paul Bunyan (aka Muffler Man) and mutant/hybrid statues at Roadside Amercia and I don’t see this guy there. If anyone knows where he was located, please let me know. I didn’t notice there being many of these statues with guns. Most have axes or carry nothing at all any longer.
Wan’t I positioned just perfectly in relation to the Big Guy. Like he’s looking right at you.
And of course, while working on this painting I ended up reading some Paul Bunyan tall tales to H.o.p. I had forgotten everything but his being a big guy and having Babe the Blue Ox as a pet.
Paul Bunyan’s favorite thing to do is clear whole mountain tops of trees in one fell sweep.
Which meant of course I showed H.o.p. pictures of clearcutting and we talked about that for a while.
“But trees are the lungs of the earth,” H.o.p. said, and like many eight-year-olds who understand trees are the lungs of the earth he announced the thing to do was to plant some trees. I said that was a good idea and we would get him one to plant somewhere. He will want to see the tree he plants rather than sending money to someone to plant a tree for him.
“Why did they give Paul Bunyan a gun?” H.o.p. asked.