Saturday, December 01, 2007

Dem Bones


I drew this last weekend at the LaBrea Tar Pits. These are the remains of an American Lion reconstructed and on display at the Page Museum. This has always been one of my favorite spots to visit in LA LA land, and if you ever get a chance to check it out, I don't want to over hype this, but its definitely worth the gander. For me, I take great comfort in the lack of permanence on this planet. No matter what we do, in time, all that will remain is a starved outline if we are lucky. I am fascinated at the possibilities presented in these Natural History Museums...LA, a city of millions, covered in pavement and chain link, crack whores and worse...celebrities. And yet, many thousands of years ago there existed a classic life or death struggle between those that eat and those that get eaten. Giant Sloths, Saber tooth Cats, Lions, Rhinos, Miniature Horses...and that's just what shows up on the fossil record. I am not going to hide my firm belief in Darwin's theory and yet I can only marvel and wonder at the gaps contained within. In the Origin Of Species, Mr. Darwin waxes eloquently about the vast spans of time on record and the fact that for every species recorded in rock, there are undoubtedly thousands that are missed. So many mysteries that are out there to be found. Who knows what lies beneath each stone in our collective back yards. Who knows what will await OUR bones in the next two thousand years. I guess, between the challenge of handling the basic architecture of the skeletons combined with the fantasy of a California where these beasts roamed (or Monsters as Mr. Darwin named them), there is much reward for these drawing experiences.

Speaking of great experiences, in the past couple of weeks I have had the pleasure of witnessing two incredible movies. The first was No Country For Old Men and I will not analyze it here (as I don't want to give ANYTHING away) but I wish to relay that I don't think there was a second where my interest wavered and not a character that I did not have a reaction to. Amazing storytelling. The second was Enchanted...yes Enchanted. I am a cynical, angry animation guy and yet sitting in the theater with my kids I was amazed at how the whole audience was literally lifting off of its seats to embrace this very sweet tale of love unfolding on the big screen. I was one of them. It was a thoroughly enjoyable experience and I have to say I consumed every second of it with eager interest and investment. Not many films have that effect on me anymore. As with my opinions on No Country For Old Men, I do not wish to analyse Enchanted...It probably wasn't perfect...I just really liked it. Sometimes when faced with all the bitterness and hateful crap that is spewed out there on the blog-o-sphere(my own rants included...and I hate using contrite catch phrases like this piddly pun, blog-o-sphere, as much as I hate the term LOL...nobody f@#king Laughs out Loud...Puddle of snot, I'm ranting again...We're talking about love not hate you cheeseheaded slit prick... breath...calm energy...we're being positive...back to the subject...now), I need films like these combined with great drawing experiences to remind me that Dogma of any nature is inherently false and sometimes it is worth it to let stuff wash over you. It is easy to stick your thumb up your arse and say that everything new is crap and everything old is good, or vice versa...I think I'd just like stick my thumb up my arse for pleasure of sticking my thumb up my arse. Screw the Dogma.

Here are some more sketches from that day...sitting in the courtyard of LACMA (LA County Museum of Art...right beside the Tar Pits) drawing people waiting to go into the Dali touring exhibit. Not claiming that these are brilliant...but I had fun with the day. What else matters.