Born With a Tale

Virtually all of the illustration work I do these days is created digitally. Between deadlines and distribution processes it just makes sense. But I also do a lot of fine art work that is painted traditionally, ( Almost all of these non-digital paintings are done with acrylic on a hardboard surface and gravitate toward portrait and figure subjects, although I do paint some landscapes and non figurative studies.

Born With a Tale acrylic on hardboard

While you could make a case that virtually any piece of art could be used to illustrate something, Born With a Tale, is one of those fine art pieces that would seem to fit into an illustration application naturally. Partly it’s because so much of my non-illustration work still has a narrative slant.

Because I don’t want to narrow the viewer’s experience however, I try to leave a final interpretation of the image to the viewer and so don’t explain too much. I did want to cultivate a timeless quality to the painting, so there is feel of old master’s works and renaissance religious iconography. The pallet was designed to promote a warmth of antiquity as well.

The painting may seem a bit of a departure from my other fine art images in that it is more imaginative in nature. The truth is, many of my pieces feature imagined elements, so this is really not as big a stretch as some may think. Technically, the paint application is done in my usual manner, that is, a lot of glazing and implied texture. If the same methods were employed in Photoshop the number of layers in the file would be off the charts. It is very similar in that way to pieces like The Fisherman’s Wife. Unfortunately so much of the depth that glazing imparts is not as easily appreciated when displayed online or in print. But I hope to exhibit the painting in an upcoming show. I’ll post the info when it becomes available.