Saturday, January 15, 2022

"Heroes" - 2020 - Tributes to Some of my Favorite People, Part 1

 I've been thinking about doing this kind of work for many years - portraits of some my favorites. For my first 4, I choose not only some of my favorite musicians, but also people how had a very distinct to their 'look'. I like distinct unique faces. I think I'm feeling for confident about my sculpting skills - my faces are not super-realistic, but more stylized. I rather have my own style honestly. 

All these are sold, but I hope to make more in this series.

First the final images, and then a few "making of" images at the end. Ladies first......

"Broken Heart of Glass"

A Tribute to Debbie Harry. This piece is 14.5" x 15.5" x 3".

The frame is vintage - and in pretty sad shape, but I love how it looks. 

Yes, I also have a small collection of broken pieces of glass. I'm glad I had these on hand.

I decoupaged the background with vintage paper, then aged it, and added a bit of white paint to lighten it up. 

All the glass pieces were secured with specially bent wire that I made. I didn't want to use glue. 

Her face.

On the back, I pasted an article that I found in an old detective/true crime magazine from the 50s. I thought it was perfect.

"Happy House"
A tribute to Siouxsie Sioux, of Siouxsie and the Banshees. The piece measures 8" x 13.5" x 3".

This piece is mounted on a lid from old box my brother gave me. The box contained tons of old cobbler's nails. I still have, and use, those nails in my work. And I think I used the box for some other piece as well.

And I love the song, "Happy House", I think it was one of the first songs I her from her, back in the late 70s or early 80s. 

I love the pop of color that the red cord adds. 

It's all about the details.

More details. If you lift that little door, there's a secret word inside. 

I pasted a page of a Danish bible from the 1880s on the back. Why not?

"Sixteen Shells"
A tribute to Tom Waits. This piece measures 20" x 13" x 3".

I was able to salvage more of that vintage frame for this piece.

An obvious reference to Tom's song, "16 Shells from a Thirty-Ought-Six". And I was lucky to have these shells in my studio. At the time, I lived in Downtown Atlanta and lots of movies were shooting in the neighborhood. I would pick up the spent shells when I would see them. They were perfect for this piece.

I decoupaged the background with vintage paper.

I nailed these on, and treated the nail heads with an antiquing solution. 

The antique frame. 

More decoupaged vintage paper - appropriate to the piece I think.

"Reasons to be Cheerful"
A tribute to Ian Dury, of Ian Dury and the Blockheads. The piece measures 14.5" x 11" x 3"

Ian has a song called, "Reasons to be Cheerful, Part 3". What a perfect title for this piece that may or may not have anything to do with being cheerful - but who cares? 

I love all the found objects here. 

I just always loved his personality and his style. I hope I captured some of it. 

Tiny foundry patterns. 

Small vials.

Something off of a saxophone(?).

I love this - and had to include it here. I have a few of these coins - I think someone gave them to me. 

The back. This piece is actually out of an old Victrola. The instructions on how to lubricate the Victrola are on the label you see. 

A few 'making of' images....

The polymer clay heads - before I added the hair on the second bake. 

The heads after painting.

The heads, after aging, lightly sanding, and finishing with a coat of Johnson's Paste Wax. 

The portraits are dressed, and ready to be added to their piece. 

Laying out the heart for Debbie's piece - so many choices.

Laying out Siouxsie's piece.

And Ian's piece. 

The background for Ian's piece. This was covered with 'answers' from a vintage question & answer book. Aged and then lightly sanded and waxed. 

A possible option for Tom's piece. I thought the other way was better. 

An interesting page from a vintage catalog. I love stuff like this. 

Thanks again for looking!


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