Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Dragon Riders of Nez Perez and a Rant


I painted this a while back...I was playing with using the monochromatic colors found in the photography of Edward S. Curtis to give this image an old timey feel. I've always been fascinated by Native American culture and am a huge fan of Mr. Curtis' work. The idea for this image came to me from a story I've been trying to crack for a long time. Sometimes roughing up some imagery provides a needed abstraction to dislodge an idea that is stuck in the creative mud. My mind wanders and this kind of stuff often helps me pin it down (rough as it is).

Speaking of stories...I have another rant to get off of my chest. As a young white kid growing up at the tail end of the eighties in rural Ontario, I was so full of hatred for the popular culture of the time I found most of my influences rooted in the music from a previous, cooler generation. AC/DC's "Long Way To The Top (If You Want To Rock and Roll)" is, and I will not back down from this, probably the greatest song with bagpipes ever written. Bon Scott is a hero (minus the drowning in a pool of vomit thing), and to the geeky anti-social dick-wad I was at the time, he was a voice of hope and a beacon of sanity for the future I prayed would some day come. I don't really know what that means, but when I hear Dirty Deeds, or Highway to Hell, there is some rush that fills all the lonely parts of my chubby self with a happy anger that throbs a confidence from within that usually lays apathetic and dormant in my pathetic shell. For some reason, when I hear "no stop signs, speed limits...nobody's gonna slow me down"...for that brief moment, my life is a little more awesome. F YA!
So, where am I going with all this and why bring it up now. Well, when I was fifteen I could not fully openly flaunt my love of this artform because of the lack of understanding from the ol' folks in my life (of course, that is what rock and roll is all about, but hey, I hate confrontation). So I always figured when I growed up, I would be able to rock out anywhere, anytime, because cool music is cool music no matter the genre (believe me, I put Cracklin' Rosie and The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald right up there with ol' Bon), but apparantly it t'ain't so boss. I was in the car with my gals and on the radio came "It's a Long Way To The Top..." and by the time the bagpipe solo landed, my two female kids were literally in tears of pain as if I were ramming grapefruits into their ears with a bal peen hammer, and my wife was looking at me with that same look she reserves for when I fart in public. I now realize...that nothing friggin changes! When I was a kid I was stuck tortured by the painful wailing of Celine and the soundtrack to that crappy movie Cocktail under the brutal regime of my parents, and now I'm yolked under the horrific weight of Hannah Montana, High School "the world needs to end soon please" f@#king Musical and of course Dora "everything I say I will YELL because that is how I will imprint my plot of world domination through mass marketing and the need for your children to consume my crappy stuff" the Explorer.
I will never be cool. Life is not like an eighties movie...nobody else likes your music, and you will never have your own dance spontaneously catch on to make you the most popular person on the planet for ten minutes. Thank the sweet baby Jeebus for headphones and Pina Colada coolers. I think tonight when everybody in my house goes to bed, instead of searching the internet for naked ladies (I've heard talk of people doing this), I will curl up in a quiet corner of the bathroom, behind the toilet where they say to go in case of tornadoes, and with the door locked, listen to Ride On and cry myself to sleep. Perhaps Mr. Bon Scott, Miss Joplin and that guy from the Beatles died for all of our sins. I wish the pop stars of today would do the same.

If this makes no sense then please accept my apology. I said at the top "my mind wanders" and it does.
KP

19 comments:

Jay River said...

Love your "Dragon Rider" image, great creativity and motivation (ES Curtis).

You might enjoy this film clip from a 1911 ES Curtis lecture.

Link:ES Curtis on Canyon De Chelly

Jed said...

haha , just to make you jealous my kids Love my taste in tunes , just the other day Twisted Sister's "Where Not Gonna Take
It" Was on , Holly wasn't really sure what she wasn't going to take , but she damn well wouldn't take it anymore ( at the top
of her lungs )

Randeep Katari said...

dude. I swear, you need to publish a book of rants, please.
Pleeeease.
-R.

walleye said...

Jay...Thanks so much for the link. I've never looked up Mr. Curtis on youtube and was surprised and impressed by the amount of interesting work there is out there using his photography. Very inspiring. Thanks again!

Jed: I have a theory that Cum on Feel the Noise is almost a perfect song right up there with Happy Birthday and Beethoven's eighth. Everybody loves it. And lets face it my friend...your kids are pretty cool and not nearly as bitter and judgmental as mine. I wonder where they get that from?

Randeep: Thanks for reading all my rants...I can't imagine the audience it very big to hear a middle class married guy whine about his problems. I sure do have fun writing them though, so thanks for checking in!

Bobby Chiu said...

I love your rants too. genuinely funny stuff :)

Dragon Rider looks amazing as well! Thanks for contributing to the Dragon Sketches book!

kris pearn said...

Hey Bobby!
I wasn't sure if you used it or not...I know you've got a lot of talent up gathered around you. Thanks so much for thinking of me. By the way, I love the borders campaign you guys did. Really great. Congratulations my friend.
Kris.

Jason Blower said...

I agree with the others your rants are like prose to my ears. They are honest and funny as hell.

-my board is ready to hit the slopes for sure.

Dustin said...

Stop relying on other people's definitions of cool. I think you're fucking awesome.

Monkeyfeather said...

Another great rant (combined with great art.) Long live AC/DC and death to the modern pop star!

warren said...

Whiner.


*kaff*.


(PS - I'm just jealous. My kid dances to anything - including Fine Young Cannibals?!)

tony trujillo said...

I was roaming the blog universe and found yours. Great work here man!! I enjoyed the prose as well, keep it up.

It's comforting to know that there is someone else out there who knows who Bon Scott is. Rock on!!

John S. said...

Great drawing.
Hey, the fact that Van Halen has re-united is proof enough for me that there is indeed a God and he loves good music.
Another is that Britney's album is tanking.
Speaking of High School Musical, did you see the nude photos of the brunette girl? NIce!

Robert Islas said...

Dude, this is awesome! I have to say that my mind wondered about a third of the way into your rant, but the illustration is wicked cool.

walleye said...

Ha! Thanks Robert! Long time no see eh? How is life out in the desert?

John! Great to hear from you! Van Halen is even more Van Halen this time around with Eddie's kid playing bass. I think Britney is probably done...thank Jeebus. Her reign of terror has been hard to ignore. Now we just have to wait fourteen years for her messed up kid to become famous. Shit.

Thanks Tony for stopping by!

Warren...if it wasn't for the whining I'd have no reason to rise out of bed in the morning...Most days I don't. Kaff indeed.

Thanks Dustin, John and Jason...Mr. Blower, what ever happened to Madame McGees? Its still wierd enough to think about.

Thanks all,
KP.

Ciaran Lucas said...

Now that was a good rant :D
Screw trying to be cool, its not worth the effort. I was the same with my music tastes, until I hit college, and then there was one guy who DIDN'T listern to the same stuff as meself. That was truly a good time :D


Needless to say, great work.

Dipak Sawant said...

Great work on this blog.....

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Siddiq said...

reading your rants makes me feel like i was writing those words myself, such a great relief.

Noel said...

New Fan of your Blog.