Friday, March 11, 2011

a whale of a tale...

Little Skull "Before"

 I was at Michael's Crafts shortly after Halloween and found this great little wooden skull in a bin outside of the front door. I decided to pick it up with the intention of painting it with a random design for a friend who likes skulls.
After pondering it for a while, I decided that it would be cool to actually paint a scene on it. I know that my friend really likes Pirates, Skulls and the book Moby Dick, so I decided I would paint a scene on both sides of the thin wood- a hole at the top makes it an easy hanging piece so that both sides can be seen. I wasn't really sure what to paint on there that would be cool and I had no idea what Moby Dick was portrayed as other than a big whale. So I started looking online to get some inspiration and found a few pictures that really gave me some ideas. I decided to sketch a pirate ship, a sword and some skulls on one side and a couple of scenes from Moby Dick on the other. One of the pictures I sketched was actually adapted from one of Rockwell Kent's pen & ink drawings that actually appeared as one of the illustrations in the 1930's edition of Moby Dick. The other painting is a beautiful picture of a whale coming up out of the ocean with a small boat in the foreground. I found the picture all over the Internet on Google images, but no where could I find whose original work it was. Be that as it may, I decided to use it to help me with this birthday gift. To both the front and back I added an excerpt from Moby Dick to add the extra connection. I used acrylics on this painting. I was thrilled with the way it came out for a first acrylic attempt, so that bolsters my confidence to work on future, original works.

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