Archive for August, 2007

Meet The Bathing Beauties.

Thursday, August 30th, 2007

I’m doing a whole series of deep sea fish and they’re so truly hideous my mother has christened them “The Bathing Beauties”. That name has stuck for the time being, so I’d like you to meet The Bathing Beauties.


This is my anglerfish. She was mentioned in a post below. Originally she was going to be a one-off, but I enjoyed drawing her so much I drew her some friends based on the Blue Planet program I watched. Also, all of my beauties have an anthopomorphic component. For example, the anglerfish has a lure that lights up on a stalk attached to her head. I turned that into a lightbulb. You could really say she lights up the sea! Ha ha ha! Moving on.


Ah, the gulper eel. Isn’t she lovely, folks? I also mentioned her below, saying she looked like a kite because all she is is a giant head with a mouth that opens like screen doors that have been ripped off their hinges by a tornado, a tail and no middle bits. And because kites have those little bows on their tail for stability or balance (I forget, science class and kite-flying is a long way back for me), I put little bows on her tail. Awwwww. Pretty.


And now the hatchetfish. I know I’m going with a Bathing Beauties theme here, but the damn thing looks like its mother mated with an Orc. It truly was hit with the ugly stick. Whacked repeatedly. As you can see, it has barbs coming out of it, so I made the top and bottom rows arrows, two forks and a dental tool.

I’m now working on a viperfish wearing a sock (hey, it gets cold down at 5,000 feet) and one other, I haven’t decided yet. But there will be five of them and I’m hoping I sell them as a set and not one at a time. I’d like to see them all living together.

This past weekend.

Monday, August 27th, 2007

I intended to work on my fish painting this weekend, but on Thursday night I got a phone call. Apparently, someone had run an ad in a paper sometime on Wednesday saying, “We’re doing this thing and you should be a part of it. For more information, go to this website!” The ad ran weeks earlier than expected and… there is no website to go to. So my client called me up in a bit of a twitter and I had to spend Saturday taking photos and building Photoshop files and making this website (which I did, thank you very much, banged that sucker out in four hours, I am awesome and great, fear my wrath.) And then Sunday I was meeting with clients early in the day and family members later, so I had exactly zero time to work on my personal stuff. Alas, such is life.

However, last night I was trying to talk to Snorth on the phone, but Blue Planet was on Discovery and they were doing a deep sea segment. The anglerfish I am drawing, he’s a deep sea fish. I LURVES me some deep sea fish. I kept being distracted from whatever we were talking about to say things like, “Whoo, that has to be the ugliest thing I have ever seen. It looks broken.” Here are some of the highlights for me:


This is the gulper eel. It is a head and a tail which hangs down. No middle bits. And its mouth is huge. As you can sorta see from the picture above, his mouth just falls open. He looks like a kite or a poorly made Muppet. But most importantly, his little creepy beady eyes are perched right at the end of his nose, so when he looks at you head-on, he looks like this:


AHHHH! That is the thing of nightmares. A giant mouth that doesn’t even fit on the frame and seems to go on forever, with cold blue eyes that look at you like a bitter spinster librarian who knows you have three books overdue. I need to go scrape this image out of my mind with a plastic knife now.

The creature below would be one of the most terrifying animals ever, except that its blue light-producing photophores (meant to attract prey) reminds me of eighties music videos, specifically Gloria Estefan and Duran Duran.

photophores.jpg picture-4.jpg picture-2.jpg

Their excessive makeup, their blatant use of teal coloring, the fact that they’re WARRIORS, warriors who sing and dance and use synthesizers, but warriors nonetheless. It’s like this horrifying sea creature goes out all day and kills other fish, but then goes home and listens to Bananarama. And while that’s weird, it’s not scary.

Also, there was another creature that I couldn’t find any pictures of, and that was some sort of deep sea worm. It looked like, and I am not exaggerating, a pretty pink phallus wearing a frilly ballroom dancer’s skirt. It would flip its skirts up and gently flop them from side to side and that’s how it would move itself around the ocean floor. You know the saying, “Truth is stranger than fiction”? They ain’t kidding. In my most creative moments, I couldn’t have come up with anything resembling, and I never get tired of typing this phrase, a phallus wearing a frilly ballroom skirt.


Monday, August 27th, 2007

Well, not really. I’m painting a fish. And not just any fish, an anglerfish, one of nature’s creepiest fish.

Creepy anglerfish.

I’ll post pictures soon. Other than that, my life is the most mundane thing ever. In the last two weeks I’ve seen Children of Men (sad, gloomy), Brokeback Mountain (sad, repressed), Black Snake Moan (sad, Southern) and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (sad, vicious circle). I think I need to see all of National Lampoon’s greatest works to counteract all this cinematic forlonity.*

*Based on “forlorn”. I just made it up. I can do that. If our president can make up “dignitude”, I can have “forlornity”.

My triptych/Meerkat Manor.

Monday, August 20th, 2007

1. Meerkat Manor. Has anyone been seeing these ads where they compare Flower the Meerkat to Tony Soprano? Are they not HYSTERICAL? Maybe they’re hysterical to me because I’ve met real live authentic meerkats who, even though they kill scorpions and do lots of other brave things, are possibly the least intimidating creatures ever. First of all, they’re less than a foot long. They’re really small. Second, they make adorable little chirping and clicking noises to each other to communicate, it’s precious. Third, and possibly most important, they cuddle and snuggle when they’re in love. Not just a mate-and-saunter-off like the lions, no no, they snuggle up to each other and they chirp at each other and I’m sorry, that does not cause the New Jersey Mafia to just pop into your mind. Here’s the picture that caused me to snort loudly in the middle of the street.


2. Triptych. I can’t deal with this painting right now. I will keep working it and working it until it turns into a giant blurry mass, so I have put it aside and returned to my roots – anal, crazily detailed painting. Mmmmm, so tasty and OCD-licious. Here is a picture of my sad lonely unloved triptych neatly piled in the corner.


The Rolo Incident.

Sunday, August 19th, 2007

When my mom and I go to the theater, we like to have chocolaty nibbles. It’s not permitted in theaters, so we have to have a chocolate substance that can be surreptitiously snorked down without the ushers/enforcers seeing us. Rolos work well for this purpose. So when we saw Deuce last week Rolos were also in attendance. I put the open Rolo tube in my purse and it appears that one of the Rolos broke free of its moorings and went rogue in my purse where it proceeded to melt and smear caramel all over my camera, phone, keys and various other belongings where caramel need not be. For the past week I’ve been finding things in my purse and they’re sticky. I have been forced to suck caramel off some of my possessions. (Rubbing it with a wet paper towel doesn’t work. It just rips the paper towel. You need to have spit and suction. Trust me. I’ve lived through this for a week.) And when I think it’s all under control, New Sticky Object rears its head. There’s no point to this, just that I’ve got sticky possessions and it sucks. Well, technically, I suck (caramel off things) but you understand.

Famous people.

Thursday, August 16th, 2007

Yesterday was my big ole brush with the famous folk. My favorite was the first. Let me start at the beginning. I went to the International Gift Show at the Javitz Center with my mom (nice show, not a great deal of envelope-pushing, I was whelmed). After walking the entire gift show for six hours we went and got some sushi at Monster Sushi (best shumai anywhere) and then got tickets to Deuce. Angela Lansbury is in it and since she’s 81 I figured I’d better see her now, who knows when she’ll be back on Broadway again, if ever. So we go to the theater and (I’m going to scream the rest of this sentence) STEPHEN SONDHEIM WALKED IN, STOOD IN LINE AND BOUGHT TICKETS. LIKE A REGULAR PERSON. STOOD IN LINE. FOR A SHOW STARRING THE WOMAN WHO GOT A TONY PERFORMING IN HIS SHOW. Why the hell was he standing in line for a Broadway show? That’s like Derek Jeter standing in line with the peasants for tickets to a baseball game. I’m pretty proud of this, I behaved myself and only squeezed my mom’s arm until she squeaked in pain. (I probably gave her a nasty bruise, she bruises easily. Sorry Mom.) Then I saw Deuce, which was excellent, and afterwards, since the weather was so nice, I stood outside and waited for Ms. Lansbury. She signed lots of autographs for people and smiled and waved and chatted, truly a class act. Then, because Frost/Nixon was playing across the street (which I saw last week), I walked across and waited for Frank Langella to come out. Apparently he had visitors because we waited and waited and waited. And also waited. But we were rewarded! For out of the stage door came – James Earl Jones! He was the visitor! I love James Earl Jones. He spoke at my college graduation. Super-sweet guy. HUGE. Like tall and wide. Big fella. Then this character actor came out, he was visiting too, I looked up his name on IMDB, his name is Dylan Baker. He played a profoundly creepy pedophile in the movie Happiness and that is how I will remember him forever. He’s married to actress Becky Ann Baker who was in one of my favorite musicals Assassins WRITTEN BY STEPHEN SONDHEIM (see how everything comes full circle? Huh? See? Huh?) And then Frank Langella came out. My God, he’s gorgeous. Really. Like aside from being handsome, he has wrinkle-free skin. And he’s sixty-eight. No wrinkles. Whatever voodoo goat blood he bathes in at night is totally working for him. My goodness. By now it was 11:30 and I had been on my feet all day gift-showing and whatnot, and I went home. So for those of you keeping track, it was:

1. STEPHEN SONDHEIM. (Bruised My Mother.)
2. Angela Lansbury. (Classy British lady.)
3. James Earl Jones (“Luke, this is CNN.”)
4. Dylan Baker (Creepy Pedophile Character Actor.)
5. Frank Langella (Voodoo Goat’s Blood.)


My triptych – part 3.

Thursday, August 16th, 2007

Okay, I think I’m in the home stretch with this one. I did horrible, evil, cruel things to the painting (there was some scrubbing with paper towels to get texture, the screams could be heard for miles) but now it’s starting to look like something. I’m going to soften the SUPERRR-HAPPY! green tone defining the ground (more in the forest tones, less SUPERRR-HAPPY) and that’s about it. I like it. It’s a definite departure from my typical style (everything preplanned, organized, defined to the max) and I enjoyed the experimentation without knowing exactly where I was going. It’s nice sometimes to leave your comfort zone.





Firefly and a New York tidbit.

Tuesday, August 14th, 2007

1. I watched the entire “Firefly” series this past week. For those who don’t know, it was a short-run series on FOX. People got really devoted to it and got a might pissy when it was cancelled (in 2003, I believe). I am reticent to watch anything sci-fi because more often then not, sci-fi takes itself so SERIOUSLY. Star Trek is a good example. So is Star Wars. Everyone is having very serious, furrowed-brow conversation about something or another. Also, more often then not, there are stupid-looking human interpretations of how aliens will look (*cough*Klingon*cough*). So it was with reservations that I watched “Firefly”. It was excellent. There’s no other way to describe it. It follows a group of people trying to make it day by day five hundred years in the future. They have problems, they have fears, they have joys, they have truly funny situations. It’s totally relatable even though there are spaceships and lasers. It’s almost like going five hundred years into the past, things then were the same (work, sickness, marriage, children, war, etc) but it was just differently handled. I am sorry that it was cancelled. I wish I could have watched more.

2. There’s a home near where I live on the West Side of Manhattan that houses drug addicts and homeless people. In return they pump you full of bible-y goodness. They had the best sign and I had been meaning to photograph it for years, but yesterday I noticed they had had it redone.


The old sign looked almost exactly the same, except the text was all red and it didn’t have the white outline. Imagine walking home and seeing red neon glaring at you: “SIN WILL FIND YOU OUT”. I’m not Christian and I don’t drink or do particularly lascivious things, but that sign would make me look around, making sure no big heavenly spirit with enormous wings was going to place a searing hand on my shoulder and then force me to relive all my naughtinesses on a big screen while toasting my toes over flames.
“Look at all the things you coveted!”
“Ahhhhhh! Yes, I wanted stuff! I’m bad! Stop with the fire!”
“And the men you consorted with!”
“Ahhhhh! Yes, that’s bad too…oh, I remember him. If I remember correctly, he wasn’t bad at all, if you know what I’m sayin’ – Sorry! Sorry! Hothot hot hothothot!”
The new sign looks so much more chipper, almost Vegas. “SIN WILL FIND YOU OUT! AND WE HAVE SLOTS!” It’s not quite as soul-scouring.

New Purse! With Hexagonal Pomegranates!

Thursday, August 9th, 2007

Before I get to my purse, I saw the play “Frost/Nixon” the other night with Frank Langella and Michael Sheen. It was so, so very good. It was described as a master class in acting, and they weren’t kidding. I mean, it’s based on a real incident, when David Frost interviewed Richard Nixon after his fall from grace, and how Frost the British talk-show host got an apology out of Nixon. You know what’s going to happen, and you’re spellbound despite that. I love good theater. I just wish the seats weren’t $100 all the time, otherwise I might go more often and get more culture.

Now, purse. I painted it and I must say, I’m awful proud-like. It’s got orangy-red pomegranates and blue squiggles with orange Swarovski rhinestones on the pomegranates. I’ll be proud to drag this thing with me everywhere I go for the next six months or so.


The art deco plate.

Tuesday, August 7th, 2007

Remember back a bit when I mentioned that I had an art deco plate my mother got me in Italy with swallows and stylized leaves? And that it looked like crickets and hairy fetuses? And you said, “Nay, that Jessica is full of piffpuffery, there’s no way?” I prove it now through MAJICK OF PHOTOGRAEPHIE.


The flash made it look not nearly as good, but see what I’m sayin’? Look at it up close and then further away. It’s trippy. But awesome and in terrific condition for a piece from the 1920s. I love it.