The M-Zone!

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Gallery 14


my First Carving


this is my first carving.  not planned in the least.  this came from a small branch that caught my eye, and i made the decision to start carving just to try my new FlexCut carving knives ... never having carved before i had no expectations and am rather pleased with how much i learned my first time out

about the size of my thumb, ~4.5'' long and .75'' in diameter, this tiny carving was a lot of fun.  i'm hooked.  not sure in advance if i'd like carving or not, i can honestly say this is going to be a new favorite pastime

nominal 4.5 x .75''  oil on scrap boxwood (my garage is FULL of boxwood, now that our huge tree has been knocked down in two successive storms)

my First Carving, 4'' long
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Catherine Becker, the new Lorena Bobbitt

Catherine Becker ... what a cutie !  too bad she's married, huh guys ?  but at least she's cut her husband off

some guys love the bad girls.  i love crazy (and a few others)

nominal (as yet untrimmed) 8.5 x 6''  oil on reclaimed multi-ply hardwood support, about an hour

Catherine Becker, the new Lorena Bobbitt
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2011.07 Discover envelope art

another example of art made on a commercial envelope, finally scanned and posted

mixed media on commercial envelope

Discover envelope art
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Otzi the Iceman ( Ítzi )

apparently Ítzi the Iceman Mummy was on COPS, filmed in trailer park

... why are they always shirtless and look siht-faced when the cameras arrive ?

nominal (as yet untrimmed) 4.5 x 7.5''  oil on reclaimed multi-ply hardwood support, about 45 minutes

Otzi the Iceman
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Seal Team 6

apparently Disney got the message from SEAL TEAM 6, and the American people

Seal Team 6


internal bleeding

exposed internal organs ... lately that's how i imagine myself

7.375 x 9.375''  oil on reclaimed masonite board

internal bleeding
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tethered

tethered

for the second time in my life i feel as if i were floating ... tethered to this world by the flimsiest of threads.  yesterday as i walked down to and around my studio, and then back up the stairs, i realized i felt as if i were a visitor.  a guest, no longer as if i belonged here in my own home.  can the genie be put back in the bottle ?  or is there no going back from here ?

the colors are much more vibrant than this pic shows.  i'll try again after it dries a bit

6x10''  oil on reclaimed hardwood board

tethered
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Self Portrait, man in shock

the artist the day after

6 x 8''  oil on canvas over board

Self Portrait, man in shock
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A Strange Inner Peace

the artist upon being told that ''her feelings had changed''

a strange inner peace has washed over me.  there is no feeling other than the 'feeling' that i should be feeling something.  when Dawn died my heart was shattered.  apparently there was nothing left to break.  an old-fashioned 'missing image' icon where my heart should be

long ago i was told ''trust no one with your heart'', but in my desire to live fully i chose to ignore that advice

11 x 14''  oil paint on stretched canvas

A Strange Inner Peace
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First Choice Tree Care envelope

paying over the phone prevented me from submitting the provided customer service survey form. this should be an acceptable substitute, i hope

love the mischievous look on her face ; holding the chainsaw, about to do something irreparable

9 3/8 x 4 1/8''  ink, watercolors and marker on recycled envelope from First Choice Tree Care

First Choice Tree Care envelope
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Butt-Munch

a kwik-e-painting from today : Butt-Munch ( with apologies to Munch and his ''the Scream'' a.k.a. ''the Cry'' )

this one has been kicking around for quite some time now

5 x 7''  oil on canvas over board

Butt-Munch, with apologies to Munch
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Bob Ross Nightmare

painted on what i believe to be a machine created mass-produced P.O.S., complete with authentic coffee stains

the idea for this has been brewing for a long time, and only recently did the right kind of painting become available at a local thrift shop

20 x 24''  oil on ''Starving Artist''-grade oil painting

Bob Ross Nightmare
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the Golfers

''mark your balls so i can putt-out !''

vastly improved upon ''The Gleaners'', by Jean Francois Millet, 1867

this miniature work of art combines various media over an old crappy litho repro

4 x 5''  various media over lithographic reproduction, framed

The Golfers, based on The Gleaners
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Sex and Death

la petite mort ... sex and death, sex and rebirth ...

these paintings are nearly impossible to photograph, as they are painted with gossamer veils of transparent oils, and seem to shimmer and glow when viewed in person - how do you capture that with a camera ?  i've never been able to figure out a way that works.  you'll just have to see it in person, i guess

30 minutes of mixing oils on an unprimed support (highly absorptive)

nominal 7.875 x 10''  oil on reclaimed masonite-like support

Sex and Death
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Sarah, Sweet Succubus

so why do succubi (is that the plural of succubus ?) come and sex you when you are sound asleep ? what fun is *that* ?!?

but i have been having those dreams lately ... and found blood stains on the sheets when i got up this morning ( and a cracked piece of black fingernail - over 4'' long )

9 1/2 x 6 7/8 ''  oil on reclaimed multi-ply hardwood support

Sarah, Sweet Succubus
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a Geschloogie from the planet Splorch

made this back in early December 2010 but never posted it anywhere (aside from eBay that is)

the Geschloogie is native to the planet Splorch, where, thousands of years ago, they were hunted to the brink of extinction ... no one can figure out why, but thanks to conservation efforts -- and advanced cloning -- now there are so many you can own one of your very own !

2010.12 - mixed media, figure and habitat

figure stands 2.5'' tall, the shed is 5'' wide, 4.5'' tall, 4.5'' deep, food bowl .75'' in diameter

a Geschloogie from the planet Splorch Geschloogie Habitat


Economic Geography book cover

Rock-em-Sock-em Economic Policy at its best !  free market forces at work.  the book cover could also say ''illustrated by'', but i decided against it

13.5 x 9'' oil on book cover ''Economic Geography'' by Whitbeck and Finch, third edition

Economic Geography textbook cover
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Don't Turn Around, Don't Turn Around, Don't Turn Around ...

not much to say ... don't turn around !

does everyone hate circus clowns ?  i sure do ... creepy

16 x 20'' oil on offset printed wavy hardboard second hand store art

Don't Turn Around
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Kirby Model 517 circa 1957

this AM i swung past our accountant's office to drop off the annual stack of tax information.  since i was making a trip out i grabbed all the stuff marked for donation to a charitable store, which had accumulated in the last week

as i made my way to the back of the second-hand store i spotted an old Kirby vacuum cleaner.  it reminded me that Dona and i had recently (two weeks ago?) had one of our complaining sessions where we tell each other how ''America is no longer #1 because we don't make vacuum cleaners like we used to''.  actually, that wild claim was Dona's ...

in fact, we normally complain about the compact upright Dirt Devil we've had for seven or eight years, and the static shock that builds up while using it, which is able to weld thin-walled aluminum cans, or send a small person to the hospital.  or the blue Eureka which i'd thought was dead, until i remembered we had Guinea Pig, and cleaned out all the nozzles (it still performs in a less-than satisfactory manner)

seeing the Kirby made me think about calling her bluff ... an old American steel-and-concrete vacuum cleaner.  to be honest it was a LOT lighter than i had anticipated.  a Model 517, built in 1957, it represented the beginning of the new reduced design Kirby had worked so hard on

Dona had also said ''if you want to get a Oreck, or spend 450$ on a (Dyson) ball-vac, go ahead''.  she might regret that last statement, i mused, as i plunked down the 4.50$ asking price for the old tank.  ''this ought to keep me busy for two weeks'' i joked with the teller

turns out that such a machine (which had been decently maintained over the years by someone who had recently passed-on or moved into assisted living, judging by the other new things around it on the sales floor) can be serviced in considerably less time - even taking into account the unforeseen (O-M-G! it was about 10x dirtier than my wildest imaginings)

this afternoon the penetrating oil had at last freed the last holdouts (frozen screws) and i'd washed the bag, cleaned the motor, checked the brushes, disassembled everything possible to dislodge the decades of accumulated dirt.  i also got it all back together, and put it by the door so my little woman can get all aflutter when she comes home to see what her dynamite man got her (what next ? a new oven or 'fridge ?)

Kirby vacuum cleaner after rebuild and servicing
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Yabba-Dabba-Spew

looks like Fred is about to get his Bedrocks off

Fred Flintstone and Betty Rubble, nominal 6x8.25'', oil on scrap multi-ply

have you ever seen the Flintstones cigarette commercial for Winston cigarettes?

Fred Flintstone and Betty Rubble


SpongeBob SquarePants cookie jar

who eats cookies under the sea ?  SpongeBob SquarePants !  and the underwater Cookie Monster, i suppose

he would most likely be willing to eat cookies from ''a pineapple under the sea''

basic pineapple cookie jar courtesy Target

SpongeBob SquarePants Cookie Jar
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Eco Man action figure

he the man - the ECO MAN


Eco Man, Chris Diehm PhD
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the back of the box has copious printed material, the top and sides are primarily blank

all materials are recycled, except for skateboard ('tech deck' purchased new) and the plastic cover which, not surprisingly, was the most daunting facet of this project, and was the single most struggled with aspect from the moment of initial conception ... a 2 liter bottle was *almost* workable (when will America embrace the 3 liter bottle of sugar water ???)

years ago i made a ''Philosopher Barbie'' for Dona (from the same Phil department).  that was largely a modified Barbie in original box with added graphics and smart-alec comments (such as ''comes with ass-kissing entourage'')

for this project elements such as Chris's personal interests, Environmentalist stereotypes (e.g. 'crunchy', tree-hugger' and tie-dye), as well as the exclusive use of recycled materials, was of primary importance (special thanks to Toppers pizza, who got an xmas card from me this year ... what great pizza!!!)



text from back of box :


eco man is the most environmentally responsible action figure on the market today

ECO MAN -

- is now 2% more environmentally responsible

- now 15% more crunchy

- has tree-hugging action

- is more Vegan than ever before

- incurs smaller carbon footprint

- made of harder wood

kayak, mountain bike, snow skis and shoes, as well as campsite and classroom playset sold separately


Ryden-alike

after a painting by Mark Ryden.  a few days ago i was reflecting on recent splashes in the art world and it hit me : where is Mark Ryden hiding ?  is he dead ?

12 x 12''  oils on stretched gallery wrap canvas

after Ecstasy of Cecelia
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Czar Nicholas II

copy of an unfinished portrait (probably a study).  worked on it a bit here, a bit there over a few days.  probably a total of a little over an hour.  wish i knew someone who could take me from beginner-intermediate to solid intermediate.

8 x 10''  oils on canvas on board

Czar Nicholas II
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Hello Kitty SONY

after getting rid of the SOTEC i was really missing ''Hello Kitty'' (to which i had added the same graphics)

there are multiple minor modifications added to this case ... mainly securing buttons and switches along the case edges from being unintentionally actuated (but still easily accessible), and the lid's latch from snagging all my sweaters.  my Nintendo DSs have the same mods as well.  also clearly visible on the laptop lid is a 'block' which anchors a twisted length of heavy copper wire (romex) to act as a strain relief, and also hold the power cord up to minimize snagging on desktop corners, etc.

spray enamel on laptop

Hello Kitty Laptop number 2, SONY

Hello Kitty Laptop number 1, Sotec


SAW III Doctor

while getting up on my movie watching, SAW was next to the TV and unsure where i'd left off in the series, i tossed in SAW 3.  seeing the hottie Doctor Lynn (played by Bahar Soomekh, who has done too little work in Hollywood, it seems to me) made me wonder how i could have forgotten having watched it - or maybe my lusty unconscious wanted to feast upon her visage again.  either way, i've not painted enough lately (competing interests winning out, plus my meds are working which reduces my drive to paint) and she seems the perfect victim

12 x 12''  oils on stretched gallery wrap canvas

SAW 3 Hottie, Lynn
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Carving Tool Case

not happy with my ''Cheap-O Brand'' carving tools rolling around, it was time to provide some safety for the sharpened edges as well as organize them, and the sharpening strop as well.  was able to do all this with the rubber remaining from the shoe lasts i had made some time back, using the cheap plastic clamshell containers (that the sharpening strop and carving tools were sold in) for molding blocks within the wooden cigar box itself (which was lined with clear packing tape to ensure smooth surfaces).  over an hour on my vibrating table removed almost all the bubbles from the rubber as it cured

sculpture sculpture


Dragon Fruit

while hunting and gathering Oreos, Mountain dew (Jolt Cola is hard to find), and processed cheese, i accidentally stumbled into an aisle with exotic-looking fruit.  never having seen one of these before, i had to pick one up to commit to canvas

a little over one hour

8 x 10''  oils on canvas over board

sculpture
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MoBA Repro

this is a reproduction of a MoBA painting. for a long time i've wanted to make a copy, and now i have

my back pain has returned with a vengeance (i think i know why, and it could be short-lived).  looking at the dates when i stopped painting - a year ago or so - you can tell, almost to the day, when i began taking the re-uptake inhibitor which reduces the debilitating pain to a tolerable level

now that the pain has returned i find myself thinking about painting all the time ... when first taking my new medicine i feared it would inhibit all desire/motivation to paint, and to everyone's amazement it did just that

a little over one hour

11 x 14''  oils on canvas over board

sculpture
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Alien sculpture WIP update

decided to go with an accordian.  still not finished, but not much farther to go

14.5''  inches inches tall


sculpture
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Alien sculpture WIP

started in mid July, this sculpture has reached the point where i need to decide what to do with his hands - if he had any, that is

sad how awful this looks in harsh light.  the surfaces seems smooth and natural in person

right now i'm leaning toward a violin.  maybe an accordian, but i used that in an earlier painting ... a death ray seems too cliche

14.5''  inches inches tall

sculpture
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Ancient Astronaut

Ancient Astronauts probably had kids tagging along, what with the cost of babysitters over hundreds of light years ... so here is one with his GameSlave handheld video console

2.625''  sculpture (earrings and nose stud not installed for photo)

sculpture
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sculpture


ID Badges

while standing around before a University event, the chair of Biology and English, and i discussed the possibility of having cool nametags.  the throw-away paper nametags are not only cheap looking but devoid of personality.  later i painted a Bat (the Biology Professor's major interest) which i forgot to photograph, hence its absence from this page.  after that it seemed natural to make some fun badges.  Michael, the chair of the English Department, has several interests, but Poe caught my attention (for obvious reasons)

Repurposed Button Back Badges, Spray Paint, Custom Sculptures, Oil Paint, Varnish

ID Badges


Original ID Badge

Chris was kind enough to provide me with some photos of the original ID Badge

4.75'' x 3.75''  Oil paint on canvas

ID Badge


Adult GAZ (test)

rapidly executed ''pencil test'' (with oils and a brush) of Gaz as an adult ... the completed portraiture will include her iconic shirt (with filled-out sweater meat) and the eyes will probably be more squinty, like when she's really pissed off.  the mouth will probably be more angular - even if it is a cartoonish look

this pizza box, aside from my love of painting on cardboard, is a fitting support for Gaz

oil paints on cardboard, Large pizza size

Adult Gaz
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