Sunday, February 18, 2007

Tree People and other things

First I'll address the other things. The Dirty Show 8 wrapped up last night and although I didn't sell my piece it was a worthwhile experience. We had a good time at the opener and I want to thank all of my buddies for coming out on such a cold night. Dinner at the Roma Cafe and a, well, let's say, a very interesting night viewing some art that ranged from the ridiculous to very tasteful. Of course, the people watching was just as fun as viewing the works of art.

Next, I recently found out that at least one of my cartoons was selected for the 16th Euro-Kartoenale in Belgium. Previously, I had said that I got in, but apparently that was just for the judging. Out of 987 cartoonists from 84 countries in which 4000 cartoons were entered, only 250 were selected for the show, which will be held in April.

Now, on to the tree people. For awhile now, I've been tinkering with these rooted figures and have been exploring a theme of just what it means to put down roots, to grow and what does that mean to me. In an age where homes and neighborhoods have become nothing more than investments, just what does the phrase "putting down roots" mean? Neighbors are something different from when I was a kid and I think that people themselves have changed, too. So, what does it mean to grow and just how far can roots grow? They can only grow so far as the branches themselves, but they need nourishment and maybe that's all it's about.


Mike Dutton said...

Bruce, that's very exciting news about the Euro-Kartoenale. Congratulations!

Your concept and thoughts regarding the tree people are very intriguing, and I would love to see this explored further. At first glance and without a read-thru, they may just seem like concept art for a fantasy game, but the context you're putting them in, such as rooting ourselves in a neighborhood and what that means to people today versus yesteryear speaks a much more complex message. Perhaps push that element so that the art speaks the same message. For instance, a tree person having to uproot itself due to troubling circumstances, or a young sapling with barely any roots at all, hopping around from plot to plot, while the ancient trees look on shaking their heads, their roots heavily intertwined with each other. Ah, the possibilities!

David said...

Good Luck on the 16th Euro-Kartoenale in Belgium hopefully your cartoon will do good over there. Now as for the Tree People. hmmm all I could say is interesting and different..

Dayna said...

Different and weird, weird, weird
Uncle Bruce

Ana Banana said...

Hi Bruce,

Congratulations on your cartoon being selected! That's quite impressive to be one of the 250 selected out of 4000.

I really like your sketches, especially the last one. I think the quality of the line, kinda of scratchy and jagged looking, gives a lot of character to these "rooted" people. There's a bizarre quality in their posturing...really nice. I particularly like the idea of expressing the state of the human condition in your art. Art is most interesting, to me, when it explores and delves into ideas. I think you're also right about the community being very different from what it was thirty years ago and there's a lot to be "unearthed" in that area.

Nice work. I look forward to seeing more on this theme.



Ana Banana said...

Oh, I also wanted to say that the rooted person in the first sketch has a very isolated and tightly withdrawn quality in its posturing. This sketch captures a mood that I think you're trying to express. I think you should take this feeling furthur if you continue with this idea. I like the notion of alienation and isolation expressed in this manner.

Anonymous said...

Congrats again, Bruce! What an honor. I can hardly wait to hear more about the show and the results it brings.

The idea of Tree People and the roots which holds them is intriguing at least. It is quite obvious to me, at the advancing age I am at, that "roots" can portray different things to different people making it a controversial topic to explore. In retrospect, the shallow roots I had as a youngster now appear shallower to me than they did then. Does this mean my roots are deeper today? know me and my jabbering away, lets save this for a longer time together, when the topic can be explorered in greater depth.

Unkle Chuck

Bruce said...

Mike: You've given me a lot to think about and you're on the same path that I am with these tree people. I like the young sapling idea and will explore that and all the other tree peeps. I've recently started a painting with the one guy on the left side of the bottom image, so when it's ready I'll post it here.

Dave: Thanks, but it didn't get any awards, but I'm happy to have the exposure and possibly publication in the catalog.

Dayna: Ha, ha,I wouldn't want you to think of me as weird, weird, weird Uncle Bruce, now would I? Stay tuned for more tree people...

Ana: Thanks, Ana, I really don't know just how impressive it is, but I sure do have a lot of fun doing these international cartoon contests; they don't have anything like that here in the states.

I'm glad that you and others get where I am going with the tree/root people. I think that on those last sketches, the posture directly reflects the metal state, as well as the physical. they were a happy accident in capturing the mood that quickly.

And I will be exploring most of these sketches further trying to form these ideas a little better.

Unkle Chuck: Yes, that's the bad part of you moving to N. Carolina, no late night art/movie/music discussions. Are you still coming up next week? Uproot those roots.

Anonymous said...

Well Bruce, with me answering you with this shows you where I am at this moment. I am most impressed with your work and love standing in line to offer my congrats along with all the others who appreciate talent.

Unkle Chuck

Anonymous said...

can i use your drawing for a research art paper? i'll credit you.

@sarbrina (twitter)

Bruce said...

Sure you can, and thank you for your honesty. If I may ask, how does my drawing fit into your research paper?

Anonymous said...

i take art as a subject and i am doing a piece involves people being rooted down by their family and other attachments to their homes and cannot do things they want to. the concept is different from yours, im not going to copy it, i just want to use it as an artist reference as it is necessary for me to do so by finding an artist whose style or idea is similar to the one im planning to use.