Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Death's Master

I used to be a big fan of Tanith Lee's books. They were published, in the USA, by DAW Books, which I did some covers for back in the early 80s. Tanith Lee is still alive and writing her baroque, erotic horror-fantasies, but I haven't read anything by her in almost 30 years. When I was just starting as a professional, I hoped that I would be able to do covers for her books so I painted this one as a practice. It's from "Night's Master," which was published in 1978 (with a cover by George Barr). The convoluted storyline involved a hermaphroditic hero, a blue demon named Azhrarn, and Death (here in white, seen from the back).

Again you see my bad figure drawing which has barely improved since I painted this picture in the distant past. There is hope for me though since I have recently acquired a figure drawing course on DVD's for my home study. I never give up hope that I could draw fantasy people figures. I still want to paint things like this, except in digital media. I am really an amateur again, I can't call myself a professional artist right now.

Back then I didn't worry about my "legacy to the world." I just painted illustrations from books I read, hoping to become an Illustrator. Now I want to leave a body of Original Serious Art, not cheesy illustration, for the world to remember me by. The trouble is that I don't have any fun doing Serious Art. Can you do Serious Art in a digital medium? I really like what George Barr says on his site and wouldn't mind having that attitude, but I am too Serious. I've always liked George Barr's art. Maybe I'll re-read some of my dusty old Tanith Lee books.

"Death's Master" is acrylic on Masonite, approximately 11" x 18", February 1981.

1 comment:

Tristan Alexander said...

This is striking but odd (but that seems to fit the story). I love George Barr!