Saturday, March 29, 2008

Illustration Friday: Homage...

This week's theme for Illustration Friday is homage. I thought of doing all sorts of works for it, but in the end, I decided to revisit some of my older pieces. In particular, I wanted to pull up the Marilyn Undone series.

Above: Photograph of Marilyn Monroe by Arnold Newman taken during the last days of her life.

I must admit that I've never been overtly an enthusiastic admirer of Marilyn Monroe. Sure, I think she was great and did a lot of things that made her into an icon, but hey... I've never been one of those people who jump up and down at just the mention of her name. Believe me, there are people like that. But I was drawn to this image taken by Arnold Newman. It struck me hard. I want to say that it felt genuine and without the pretense of glamour. I wanted to pay homage to the humanity of Marilyn Monroe.

I then de-constructed the photo by doing three drawings of it and then collaging them together in one piece. These three (merged into one) were apart of the first generation of the series.

With the next generation, I did several different things. One of them was to do drawings and paintings from the first generation collage. The next thing was to re-incorporate the original photograph into the collage, as can be seen above.

Although I liked the black and white aesthetic, I wanted to introduce more color into the work. I did a series of gouache paintings based on the original photograph and then wove those in with color copies of the original generations.

As the deconstruction process progressed, the images became more abstracted and more form oriented. Snippets could be found of the original generations and source material, but eventually everything was absorbed into collage. I did HUNDREDS of pieces based on this series. Here are a few of the them. Even though the later generation images don't include Marilyn directly, they pay homage to her humanity... to my humanity.


Isabel said...

I enjoyed reading the process!

All the collages look great.

Anonymous said...

would any of them happen to be for sale?

(nudge nudge)

Andrew Thornton said...

Hey Heather Wynn!

I've sold most of them from before. Even though there were hundreds. Some of them I've saved just for me. But if you want one, I'll make you one or dig through my horde to find one just for you.

steve said...

Wow, great experimentation going on here--nice!