“Now, Irene is her name and it is night. Don’t go any further with it.”
I have an idea. It’s been kinda sorta poking around at my insides for a while. Perhaps it’s a giant turd, I don’t really know. I DO know that I’ve had this idea. So let’s get on with it, already. The idea is to do a minor key rework of Bruce Springsteen’s Born in the USA because, well, of course, it’s a song about how much America has fucked over this guy when the steel mills left and he went to Vietnam, came back fucked up, and then this country still had nothing for him. You see, Ronald Reagan is a fucktard. But enough of that.
I wanted to see if it had been done before I embarked on that path. Just to see how others have done it. Google, it seems, is telling me that this particular bit of skullfuckery hasn’t been done quite yet. Yeah!
As it is wont to do, teh internetz led me on a side path. Or maybe it’s modern wanderlust? Okay, okay, we’re not going there. Let’s on with it.
I found this guy in Romania with a blog called “remarks in a minor key,” which I suppose was related to my Google search, “born in the USA” + “minor key.” This guy starts out with an apology for not having updated his blog – which I can related to but really couldn’t give a fuck about – and as I scrolled to the second page of ramblings about shit, I found a link to a guy named Mark Ryden. An artist. An artist whose style I don’t particularly enjoy, though the Romanian guy seemed to enjoy the style (aside: didn’t know Romania had a coastline on the Black Sea).
I’d seen Mark Ryden’s stuff before. It’s not bad, just not my style. I can appreciate it for what it is and what it is supposed to be. I mean, he has fucking paintings of fucking cartoonish 3-year-old boys in pink Nazi uniforms on tricycles. I’m not kidding, either. Sorry, Mr. Ryden (can I call you Mark?), but I just don’t like it. But this isn’t about you. It’s about me. Because I’m fucking awesome wrapped up in lazy wrapped up in too-busy-living-to-live.
The POINT, I may interject here, is that this guy found a style HE liked and went with it. He has a whole body of work around this style and, for all appearances, is making a decent living at it. And for having the balls to do that, I applaud him. And the lesson here, in case you need it fucking hammered into that oatmeal between your ears, is that YOU need to find a style that’s yours and go with it. Stick with it. PUSH it. I’ve found some glimmers, some hints, some bits that I can massage into my style in many of my paintings. I just need to do it. That’s always the fucking kicker, isn’t it?
One thing I like to do is incorporate random thoughts that come to me as I’m in the zone while I’m painting. My wife says I shouldn’t put them in, but I’ve had other people tell me they like that about my art. Whenever I paint, I get these thoughts stuck in my head, so I go with them. I listen. I make them mine. I pluck them out of my skull and rub them on my crotch and grind them up in to bologna, which I then feed to my dog. He eats anything, though.
So to the teeming masses of nobody out there, go forth and find your style. Even if it’s toddler Nazi-boys on tricycles.