Friday, March 6, 2015

Hey Ricky or How I Came to Paint Rick Moranis

So I just finished a big #finealt (trying to come up with a name for what I do, trying) thrift store painting featuring a giant Rick Moranis head.  How did I get here? Do I have a love for Rick Moranis? Why would someone do this to a perfectly good painting?  While I can't always mind map an art project, I have a pretty good idea where this one came from.
It starts with #meetingnotes.  Meeting notes is an ongoing project of mine that organically started as I had to go to meetings at my day job  Many of these meetings didn't pertain much to me, so I started drawing to a) pass the time and b) work on my drawing skills.  When I started, I made mostly doodles.  Over time I began working on more complicated and intricate sketches of people (mostly celebrities that I admired).  I would post these on my instagram on Fridays to the she-grin of friends and fans.

The Wada Effect

Kevin Wada.  I loved and admired his beautiful watercolor illustrations of my own childhood obsession, X-Men.  The dude really takes the images of these characters into a whole different dimension.  But, what was prominent in Wada's work that I always disregarded in comics when I was a kid was men with chiseled faces.  Structure and lines that made them manly and super.  Never a doughy face in sight.  In response, I started trying to draw round faced men.  Men who's features wouldn't make them an action star.  One of my favorite subjects is Fred Armisen.
Fred Armisen pen & ink by Ben J Hutchison

His face is full of so many expressions and he has these features that are very round.  From Fred I moved to other faces until one day I made a meeting note of Rick Moranis.
Ricky Meeting Note by Ben J Hutchison

From earlier meeting note iterations, I decided to add words to the images and put Hey Ricky! behind his head.  And thus a new project idea began to percolate.

Bill Murray, the Muse-iest Man Alive

When I first decided to try and paint one of these new projects, I turned to my main man, Bill Murray.  I had a small landscape paining that I picked up from the Salvation Army that seemed perfect for Bill to be added.  I found a song title that I liked and got to work.  History was made. :)
Billy Don't You Lose My Number by Ben J Hutchison

I knew that I wanted to turn my Rick meeting note into a painting and I knew just what painting I wanted to use.  Over the summer, my wonderful wife had made a mission out of finding big old paintings for me to work on.  I've done small work before, but this was the biggest "canvas" that I've tried to tackle.  So I put it off.  For months.  I had printouts, sketches, test paintings, but I just feared the big guy.  I let it sit in the corner collecting dust.  Then one day, feeling like the muse might leave me for this work, I decided to pull out the painting and started.  Worked.  Then finished.  And now its done.  I hope you like it!

Hey Ricky! WIP by Ben J Hutchison

Hey Ricky! head by Ben J Hutchison

Hey Ricky!ghosttext by Ben J Hutchison

Hey Ricky! by Ben J Hutchison

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