Monday, August 20, 2007

Codename: Muffy

We are now moving past the use of religious icons to illuminate the flaws of the contemporary electronic media (see: Big Maria I), and are focusing on a subject of far greater importance--Cheerleaders. Capital C.

This brave young woman, (codenamed for her own protection: Muffy) will soon be immortalized on canvas, sprawled across the floor, arms and legs akimbo (whatever that means), bourbon bottle clutched close, lying in a pool of her own self-loathing.



Is that too much? The whole "pool of self-loathing" business?

I mean, it's more of a mood than an actual thing. There won't actually be a pool of anything. Probably just a rug, or a piece of seamless. But "sprawled across the floor, arms and legs akimbo, bourbon bottle clutched close, lying in a pool of her own self-loathing" sounds better than "sprawled across the floor, arms and legs akimbo, bourbon bottle clutched close, lying on a sheet of seamless."

By the way, disregard the over-saturation of the color of the image. I am still just messing around with the various iPhoto editing features so that when it counts, it counts. It's like shooting jump-shots in the driveway so that when game day comes, you can put the ball in the hole.

Longtime fans may remember that my favorite move was to dribble hard to the right (I'm right-handed, for what its worth), then change hands with one strong dribble between the legs, put the brakes on so that while the defender was still moving backwards I'm sort of floating to the left--one dribble, maybe two, max--then up with the shot. I, for the record, was never one who separated my jump from my shot (some guys get to the top of their jump, then shoot). I always felt like the shot came from the balls of my feet, up through my body, out the top of my fingers--all one glorious, organic moment.

I'm reminded of Milla Jovovich in the climax of "The Fifth Element" when she rocks her head back, opens her mouth as wide as she can, and some rush of cosmic energy comes out of her mouth like water coming out of fire hose. Voila, the world is saved.



This is, of course, Ms. Jovovich, although as seen in "Ultraviolet"--a vastly underrated bit of visual tour de force--not "5th Element." I'm still wondering what exactly they did to make her look the way she did in that movie. A combination of super-short depth of field and some kind of solarized effect--just a guess.



Back to Muffy. She is practicing putting her hair in pigtails, which is important if you're a cheerleader. I can't wait until we put bright red (to match her bloomers) scrunchies--possibly more than one each--on her pigtails.
It sounds like she's gonna be the poster girl for underage binge drinking
Muffy? Naaah. Besides, it's way bigger than that. It's about understanding that even the coolest kid in class is, in reality, all fucked up. We all are, of course, each in our own way. Besides, who wants to be the coolest kid in the class? Too much pressure. They're almost always more fucked up than the norm.
How do you know?
How do I know, you ask? Fair question. Truth is, I can't speak for being the coolest kid in class. I always shot for being the third or fourth coolest in any given group. But I've spent most of my life always being the smartest guy in the room ... and let me tell you, it's a burden.



Why do you think my hair's white?

And just a final note on super-short depth of field: my boy Chuck Close was the master of it. Check this out:



It is often the case, here at the Year of Magical Painting, that the example offered up to illustrate the point doesn't actually illustrate the point.

Maybe that's part of the charm.

Anyway, if you look closely at the photos that my boy Chuck paints from, he has opened the iris of his lens so wide that the tip of the nose (in this picture, for example) is slightly out of focus. So are his ears. It's only the surface of front of his cheekbones that's really sharp.

And if we could, for just the briefest of moment, go back to the red scrunchies? Who was it that used little patches of red to guide the eye around the canvas. I want to say J.M.W. Turner, but it might have been one of his buddies.





Turns out it was Constable.

I want you to think of those dark red blankets on the horses and the oxen as red scrunchies on pigtails. This is a good idea for several reasons. One of the main benefits being the resultant understanding of how "The Hay Wain" by John Constable and "Cheerleader with Banana I (I don't care! I'd rather sink than call Brad for help!)" are no more than distant cousins in the canon of Western representational art.

Muffy, I'm sure, is humbled by the notion.

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