David Bowie Tribute- Day 13- 30 Paintings in 30 Day Challenge

9"x12" colored pencil, ink, acrylic ink and gesso on toned paper
9″x12″ colored pencil, ink, acrylic ink and gesso on toned paper

The Hearts Filthy Lesson Falls Upon Deaf Ears

  Today’s 30 in 30 painting is a portrait I wish I didn’t have to do under these conditions.  With the passing of David Bowie yesterday, I didn’t really feel up to the challenge of doing artwork based on him.  I’m actually surprised I got it done today.  I am a fan of Bowie and I have been very much into his music since the mid 1990’s.  Like most children of the 80’s, my first recollections of Bowie come from his videos for Let’s Dance, Modern Love, China Girl and of course, his duet with Bing Crosby on Little Drummer Boy.  I really liked those songs of the Let’s Dance album but my first purchase of Bowie’s music was the Labyrinth soundtrack.  I loved and still love that movie.  And that soundtrack is fantastic.  Within You is one of my favorite Bowie songs.  It is haunting and a little creepy.  I hear it and I can close my eyes and see that scene of him singing the song in the movie.

  Your Eyes Can Be So Cruel

Just As I Can Be So Cruel

  And that is where I stopped when it came to his music.  At that point he was off my radar.  It wasn’t until 1995 that Bowie’s music made it back to me.  The Outside album came out that year.  It was like nothing I had ever heard before.  A jazz mixed with industrial musical concept album about a serial killer who is committing murders in the name of art and the detective who is trying to catch him.  This album came out right as Nine Inch Nails was a huge band and Trent Reznor certainly had an influence on this album.  The songs are strange and a bit random and the story is equally strange.  But this album completely works for me.  And I place it right towards the top of my all time favorite albums by any artist.  This was also the time when I was able to see him in concert.  The show was amazing and a great time.

We Had Such Wishful Beginnings

But We Live Unbearable Lives

  This is my favorite era of Bowie’s career.  The music is different and compelling and I thought his look was great.  That’s why I chose to do this portrait of him during that time period.  I feel like everyone thinks of him in the Ziggy Stardust/Aladdin Sane era and that is far from my favorite visual time of Bowie, for me.  This also marks the first time I have done this style of artwork on toned paper.  For some reason it felt like the right thing to do.  But, like Bowie himself, I feel the need to change my style.

  Thank you David for all you have given us.

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