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Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Hugo Artshow

So here's a category of Hugo nominees that I don't know much about, but that I'm quite interested in: Best Artist. I was checking them all out myself, and realized that I might as well put up some quick links up for your viewing pleasure. So that's what I'm offering here, a link to the nominees' website, and then three images. I've no idea if I picked representative images from each of them. I just grabbed ones that jumped out to me. Maybe old, maybe new. I don't know. But take a look. Tell me what you think.

Who do you fancy? And by that I mean which artist, not which subject of said artist...

Daniel Dos Santos



Bob Eggleton



Donato Giancola



John Picacio



Last but not least, Shaun Tan...

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Monday, March 09, 2009

Shakespeare's Portrait

Have you seen this portrait? It's just been unveiled as possibly the only portrait of the Bard to have been painted during his lifetime.

It's not terribly different than other portraits I've seen, but there is a crispness to the details. This interests me not just because it's Shakespeare, but because I've come across the problem of attaching too much emphasis to particular images of historical figures that may not be true likenesses at all.

Hannibal, for example. I've always found it rather amazing that each book on Hannibal has images of him included, a coin, a sculpture, plenty of paintings. They all present them as if they are valid images, and people walk away thinking they are. But none of them are! Most of them were made hundreds (or thousands) of years after his death, by people that never saw him.

When I've pointed this out I've often have felt some reluctance to it. Like I'm making something vague that shouldn't be. It's like many would rather say, "I saw that bust of Hannibal, that's how I think of him. Don't know what your motives are for muddying the waters..."

I know what my motives are: being clear on the very limited certifiable facts of distant history, and being aware that imagery can redefine meaning in ways that aren't accurate - often intentionally so.

Anyway, I'm off post topic, but that's what I was reminded of when I saw this story. Here's a cat that was famous in his time, surrounded by artists in a culture in which portrait painting was big, studied by millions over the years. And only now might we be seeing the single portrait painted by someone that actually knew him in life? I don't see that the article below names the artist. Maybe they'll figure that out in another hundred years or so...

New York Times Article.

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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Todd Lockwood

Let me say this upfront. All the images in this post came from Todd Lockwood's website. They're all copyright Todd Lockwood. That link will take you there, and I recommend browsing the images. Good stuff. With the Holiday season around the corner, I think a quality fantasy print can make a great gift. I bought one for some of my special folks. (I also traded a book for a print. Barter rocks!)

This print was used for my friend Tobias Buckell's novel Crystal Rain. I promised my kids I'd post some images of Todd's prints, and this is me doing that. (Yes, my family is still hiding out in the windswept wilds of Shetland. I'm on countdown to departure day now. 25 Days!) So this is me trying to demonstrate to my kids that I know cool people...

I mentioned during my World Fantasy post that one of the people I most enjoyed talking to was the artist Todd Lockwood. He was one of the guests of honor, much in demand, but also much available, it seemed, for conversations in the bar and... well, mostly that. We talked art and careers and raising kids and... politics.

Hey, Sage. (That's my son - age seven.) You recognize this guy? Steven Colbert of The Colbert Report. You sometimes see him on your new favorite comedy show - Daily Show With Jon Stewart. (I have to admit, I'm not sure what it is about Stewart's comedy that my son likes so much. He's still in Scotland, where the show is popular. A few months ago I didn't think Sage was a likely candidate for political comedy. Perhaps the British environment has aged him and refined his sense of sarcasm.)

This one is became the cover os RA Salvatore's third Drizzt novel, Sojourn, detailing his emergence to the surface world...

Anyway... Yeah. I like Todd's politics. Remember now that this was about three days before the US election. I'm happy to say that Todd was with me on Team Obama, as were most of the folks I hung out with in Calgary. Lovely moment... Todd gets called up at the World Fantasy Award Banquent to say a few words. He approaches the mike solemnly, looks around, and says a single word. "Obama..." Resounding applause.
This is the print I asked for from Todd in return for my book. It's weird. I dig it. My cats would understand, I'm sure.

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