Wow! Proud artist SB dropped off the Dead Man’s Hand watercolour last Sunday. It looks absolutely fantastic! Until this afternoon, it occupied the place of honour above the mantlepiece where I.ve been admiring it. Met up with photographer extraordinaire MR at Island Blue Print to choose out a frame earlier today, and the process will take about two weeks. So, although The Dead Man’s Hand is done, and it will be really done when it gets hung on the wall. Can.t wait!
But in the meanwhile, diligent readers can see the finished painting right here and right now! The professional photographs and scans that will be used on the book cover are forthcoming. These are photos I took with my mobile phone to post onto the blog. They were done on a little bit of an angle which gives the images more of a nervous look (I.m looking up the painting).
Dead Man’s Hand Photos
SB remarked that there.s a neat effect with the server: her eyes follow you across the room no matter which angle you.re looking at the painting from. With the other characters, the eyes lock in if you.re standing in front of the painting. The painting is from the point of view of the gunman (who is himself not visible). It.s probably the smallest thing that creates the effect: a thin line in how the eye is drawn or just how the angles all converge together.
Here.s TS and GP.s husky, Lucy. Sleeping away just like in real life! Lucy is the best dog ever! They were all visiting a month ago. Every night, Lucy would do her rounds to make sure everyone is okay. So around 2 or 3 in the morning, you.d hear her get up, pitter patter up to everyone, give them a sniff and a lick in the face, and then go back to bed. I like that–a pet who earns her keep! TS is saying it.s a husky ‘pack’ thing to make sure the other members are okay b/c they work in some cold and harsh environments.
Here.s gambler #3. The red from the baseball cap adds a splash of colour to the painting. The protective gesture wasn.t in the original photographs but SB improvised a shot of Oz adjusting his cap to come up with the gesture. His back is also off the back of the chair to give that feeling of surprise.
Here.s gambler #2. SB was saying that some faces are difficult to draw and other faces are a delight to draw. Of all the faces in The Dead Man’s Hand, she found this one to be a pure delight: however she drew, it would look like the model. I wonder why that is? Mmmm, the cigar looks good too.
Gambler #1 wasn.t from the photo shoot. He.s a composite of various images from the internet. Originally Gambler #1 was cast as the ‘cool & relaxed’ guy. But this didn.t really work out when the painting was coming together. The chips dropping out of his hand implying motion is a touch I like.
Photographer MR handed the camera controls to artist SB so that he could partake in the photo. Him and C were the two models in the photo shoot with acting experience and it really showed. To pose in front of a camera without acting experience is actually really hard!–you have to stay still and it doesn.t quite feel natural. Kudos to SB for capturing a high level of detail in this face: it was more difficult because the customer is further back than the gamblers.
Here is one of the owner.s of Cenote.s posing as himself: the bartender!
And here I am as Wild Bill Hickok holding the dead man’s hand: a pair of black aces on eights! The large pile of poker chips in front of me is the consolation prize for what.s going to happen in the next couple of seconds: BANG!
Thank you to everyone who turned out to the shoot and Cenote Lounge (where the beer is cold and the Cenote dogs are hot) for hosting the event! Kudos to photographer MR who ran the photo shoot. And congratulations to artist SB for putting it all together!
Until next time, I.m Edwin Wong and I.m enjoying the fruits of Doing Melpomene’s Work.