Magical Thinking

The Baseball Player Who Was a Fish  7" x 9" pen & ink,  1979
My pen & ink drawings were always a bit magical, but at the beginning in 1974, the works were also large and very time consuming to execute. Most contained many characters as well as a good many accessories such as cars, bicycles, paintings, signs, memorabilia and buildings.

In 1979, I started to work on smaller concepts with fewer characters, but lots of detail. The Baseball Player Who Was a Fish was my second drawing of this kind, containing just a “slugger” about to run to first base after hitting a ball to the outfield. In the sky, or “outfield”, there is a fish . There also is no ball field. The player is alone in a lightly wooded area on a partly cloudy day, and that is all I felt was needed for the scene.

During this period I also illustrated flying turtles, a cowgirl riding a carousel animal over Washington, D.C.,  two old women and a monkey in front of a blackboard filled with geometric equations, and a song and dance man under the marquee of an evil theater.

One of the most complex drawings created in this period was titled Fear, a drawing filled with eggs of all kinds, with nearly everything in it threatening, including a tiger, a dangerous looking man, and a woman who is looking directly at me as I draw her. The illustration was executed the year of my first daughter’s birth, which probably affected my viewpoint during the course of the project.
Fear  20" x 24" pen & ink, 1979.
Click image for larger view

I am sure that many thoughts and feelings influenced these early works, and only a few remain to remind me of that period, allowing me to better understand myself as a young man striving to succeed in the dark world looming ahead of me.

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