Superhero Portraits, Making Sense of Senseless Destruction and Becca’s Bombshells

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So it’s now summer where I am and it’s hot as… well, it’s hot.

In conjunction with the sudden heat after two weeks of rain and thunderstorms I find that I cannot string two thoughts together to make a coherent post, so I’m just going to string some random stuff together and hope that if it doesn’t make any sense, it will at least be entertaining.

Here goes:

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First off, when painting superheroes, always paint them from a low angle. It makes them look super heroic.

Quick Superman
Superman Speed painting

See?

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And speaking of MAN OF STEEL: Here are a few thoughts culled from a Facebook discussion I had with a good friend, Frank Garcia, author of the two volume book Science Fiction Television Series.

The discussion began when he pointed out a Youtube video called Regarding Clarke wherein Max Landis, who wrote the screenplay for the superhero “found footage” flick Chronicle, rants about MAN OF STEEL. In the video Landis  wonders why it is that we all (and by that he means Americans) want to go see movies full of fire and death, particularly after the country survived 9:11.

Then it hit me. It’s precisely BECAUSE of 9:11 that movies are full of such death and destruction and city destroying mayhem. Mand of Steel, The Avengers, all those movies, are how Americans are dealing with the post 9:11 world. They are doing exactly what the Japanese did in the wake of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. They made movies about a giant lizard that does what the Atom Bomb did, only more so.

But it’s okay because they can control it. They can laugh and say it’s only a giant lizard destroying Tokyo, not an A-bomb. We can laugh and joke because its aliens and guys in costumes who are destroying New York or Metropolis not ideological zealots behind the controls of a plane.

Horror movies are cathartic on an individual level. Man of Steel is cathartic on a national level. It is America telling the story of what happened to it as a nation using finger puppets. “Where did the terrorist touch you? Use the CGI alien to tell us exactly what he did and how it made you feel.” It’s therapy for a wounded country.

Max’s point could also apply to Star Trek Into Darkness and, as he mentions in the video, the Transformers movies or even James Bond in Skyfall or the recent film White House Down in which the capitol building is quite violently destroyed. All the blockbuster movies today are about stuff that gets broken. It IS like therapy! It’s just like the therapy that happens when you’ve been violated or when your house is robbed. You need to work through it

Maybe eventually they’ll get back to making movies about stuff that gets built.

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An on a completely different track altogether:

I love line art. I respect an artist that can lay down a nice clean line and create a great image out of it. One of the best practitioners of this type of drawing is one you may not have heard about; Becca Whitaker. Becca Whitaker is a pin-up artist/ illustrator/ pop culture junkie and a staff artist for Bachelor Pad Magazine. She is super talented and her drawings are fun and clever.

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You can see her art or say hello via her Facebook or you can attend the Wizard World Chicago Comic Con August 8 – 11th, 2013 and visit her in Artist’s Alley. Buy a print or an original drawing from her. It is well worth it!. Tell her M.D. Jackson sent ya!

So, there you have it. A completely mixed bag of stuff. Next week I’ll have something more coherent.

Maybe.

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