Thursday, May 31, 2007

"Beach Boys"

I am happy to say the client was very pleased with the finished piece. "I think the painting is fantastic! I am lost for words to express how well you have captured what I was looking for and can't wait to have the finished article on display in my home," he wrote.

I've posted a picture of the scanned version of "Beach Boys" though no changes were made from the photo I took and posted just a few days ago.

Anyone interested in buying a print just visit my website, www.studio1088.com. It will be 20% off during the Day of Issue Sale, until about midnight tonight (May 31, Eastern Daylight Time). I do ship worldwide.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Pastel Evolution Video


I put together a video from some photos of my latest work "Beach Boys". It's short and the quality isn't the greatest. I wish I had included the preliminary drawing in it as well.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Kathy Griffin at Mohegan Sun


Yep, I'm a big Kathy Griffin fan.

I love her no holds barred tales of dysfunctional celebrities, her admitted lack of fondness for children, and her 'gay man' mentality.

Last night we (me, Edward, Mark and Andrea) drove down to Mohegan Sun in Connecticut to see Kathy Griffin. This was our first time seeing her in person. The show was hilarious. As she promised 'we came on a good night' because of her recent guest hosting stints on "The View" she had plenty to talk about. Her comment on Barbara Walters choice of feminine lubricant was disturbingly worth the price of admission (which was quite reasonable at $35). Check for Kathy in your town.

I had heard that she was going to be at Mohegan Sun when she was on "The View" only a week ago. I'd always thought she'd be great to see in person so I quickly checked to see if I could get us tickets.

Looking forward to new episodes of her "My Life on the D-List" coming to Bravo in June.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Listen While I Work: My top 10 for May 25, 2007


"Automatic" - Ultra Naté
Sexy video! Looks like the 2 guys are cybersexing with each other, but I don't know what the Amanda Lepore blow up doll is all about! The guy with the tattoos and beard looks very (porn star?) familiar. Or maybe he just reminds me of Cliff Parker...










  1. "I Could Fall In Love With You" - Erasure
  2. "Who Knew (Bimbo Jones Radio Edit)" - Pink
  3. "All of Your Love (Jimmypop Remix)" - Hellogoodbye
  4. "Just A Girl" - Ian Van Dahl
  5. "La Vie En Rose" - Belinda Carlisle
  6. "Talisman" - Étienne Daho
  7. "Temperantia" - Lisiëm
  8. "Deeper Into You" - Johnny Hazzard
  9. "Experiment Erde" - Peter Schilling
  10. "Automatic" - Ultra Naté

Green denotes new top 10 entry.
Song links will take you to the iTunes listing if you have iTunes on your computer.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Making Changes

I'm taking a break from posting about politics, the war, the state of the world. I am even giving up television news. It all just stresses me out too much. So look for less ranting and more positive posts, more art (more hot men), and more focus on the beautiful aspects of the world.

I am making a few other changes as well. Edward and I have gotten our bikes tuned up, a rack on his car and plan to do a lot of biking this year. I am gonna focus more on fitness and since we plan to be at the beach the end of June, I am putting myself through a month of what I call, 'ready for the beach boot camp'. Wish me luck.

Friday, May 25, 2007

A Room with out a "View"


Rosie O'Donnell won't return to "The View". She has opted not to return for her final 3 weeks.

This comes days after the much talked about confrontation between Rosie and the ever obnoxious Elisabeth Hasselback.

After that episode I cancelled my TiVo season pass for the show, before even knowing that Rosie would not be back, though I was probably not going to watch after she exited in June anyway.

I won't watch "The View" anymore because Elisabeth makes me puke. Elisabeth's performance on that episode was very sickening. I never agreed with her pro-Bush politics and wondered how she could be so blind, but she showed her true colors as a person and a friend on Wednesday's episode. Elisabeth is an class A 'patridiot', she's dispassionate, she stabbed her 'supposed' friend Rosie in the back, and she's as phony as Bush, no wonder she can't get enough of him. She's fake and obnoxious and as patriotic as a puppet. Love her or not, Rosie was loud, real and compassionate, and I look forward to her next endeavor.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

John Edwards


Perhaps the most intelligent, eloquent and accurate view of the war from any politician so far.

NEW YORK (AP) - Democrat John Edwards Wednesday repudiated the notion that there is a “global war on terror,” calling it an ideological doctrine advanced by the Bush administration that has strained American military resources and emboldened terrorists.
In a defense policy speech he planned to deliver at the Council on Foreign Relations, Edwards called the war on terror a “bumper sticker” slogan Bush had used to justify everything from abuses at the Abu Ghraib prison to the invasion of Iraq.

“We need a post-Bush, post-9/11, post-Iraq military that is mission focused on protecting Americans from 21st century threats, not misused for discredited ideological purposes,” Edwards said in remarks prepared for delivery. “By framing this as a war, we have walked right into the trap the terrorists have set—that we are engaged in some kind of clash of civilizations and a war on Islam.”

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

"Moonlight Shadow" - Mike Oldfield


Just because...

On The Drawing Board: Finished?

Normally at this point I would be posting an official finished image of my latest work, but being a commission I still have to run it by the client. I think he'll like it, as he has been happy with it's progress up to this point. Unfortunately he is abroad and won't get back to me until the end of the week.

I still have to think of a name. So I suppose having a few extra days gives me time to think. I will make this available as prints as soon as I can.

"Have f*$#@ng Great Summer" - Big Oil


  1. Gas prices reach record levels during the same period the oil companies report record profits. Hmmm....?
  2. The oil lobbyist are campaigning against a bill to make gasoline price gouging a federal crime. Why would that be an issue for them if they are not price gouging?
  3. The oil companies partly blame their annual 'maintenance' period for price increases. Shouldn't they be paying for maintenance and upgrades with their 'record' profits instead of having consumers foot the bill?
  4. In the run-up to the 2006 election, gasoline prices dropped an unprecedented 82 cents over a four-week period. Perhaps to soften the public's disdain for incumbent "oil industry bedmate" Republicans?
  5. The oil companies also like to 'spin' consumers into blaming environmentalist for limiting where they can drill. Though, for them it's not a big problem since a limited supply apparently results in record profits. See point #1 above.
  6. In the early 1960's JFK vowed to put a man on the moon by the end of the decade, and American ingenuity made it happen. Why then, 34 years after the first gas crisis is gasoline still the only viable and widely used fuel for automobiles? Scientist have created cars and engines that run on hybrid fuels, electricity, even hydrogen.

Monday, May 21, 2007

"In Denial" - Pet Shop Boys & Kylie Minogue


Neil:
In denial, no my life’s a trial
I’m not denying that every
Little bit hurts
It’s a problem that I’m not solving
Don’t mind admitting
I feel like quitting this job
For a while getting away
Before it gets any worse today

Kylie:
You’re in denial, and that is final
You’re not admitting
You should be quitting all these
Queens and fairies
And muscle marys
The rough trade boyfriend
Who in his pathetic own way
Denies he’s gay
Why can’t you see
This is a fantasy world

Neil:
I’m not denying
I could be trying
A little harder
To deal with some of this stuff

Kylie:
Know what I’m thinking
Less drugs and drinking
No cigarettes and you’d feel
A little less rough

Neil:
Is that enough
My life is absurd
I’m living it upside down
Like a vampire
Working at night and
Sleeping all day
A dad with a girl
Who knows he’s gay

Both:
Can you love me anyway

Sunday, May 20, 2007

On The Drawing Board: Last Wave


I am heading into the home stretch! Now I know, I enjoy all the pieces I do, after all that's why I do them. I also know that the current piece I am working on I often think is my 'new favorite' or the one I am most proud of.

That being said, I really love this picture! I am so happy with how it is turning out, and oddly it's a commission. But like I mentioned before, it is soooo like something I would do on my own. I think what I really enjoy is the fun, sunny setting as I love the beach and being near the ocean. The colors of the sky, the sea, the tanned guys in their vibrant Speedo's, all give it a dramatic pop. This is why I enjoy working in color so much.

New Postage Rates (& Rules) = Headache

The United States Postal Service raised their rates this past Monday. I was aware of that and planned to adjust my shipping and handling charges on my website to reflect that. What I was not aware of, was that they also revamped and redefined the various classes of mail, domestic and international.

I first discovered this when I went to mail a single print to the United Kingdom by Global Priority Mail. I've done this numerous times and it's typically about $10-$12. Friday I was told that it was going to be $20! That is a ridiculous increase. No longer is postage determined by weight and distance alone, they have added 'shape' as a factor as well. Global Priority is gone, replaced by First Class International and Priority International. As typical the clerk was not very helpful. I even asked "how much would it be for regular airmail?" She seemed confused by the question and just kept saying that they rates went up Monday. So as a former Postal Service employee myself I went home and read about all the confusing changes online.

I have spent much of the last several days (instead of working on my latest drawing) devising a new rate chart for my shipping and handling fees, trying to keep costs as low, as uniform and as simplified for my customers as possible. I don't like gouging people on shipping like some folks (most noticeably on eBay) tend to do. I had to keep in mind the various products and combinations that can be ordered and which packaging would fit best and which class of mail the package would qualify for.

I think I have come up with a good formula. In some (not many) cases, s&h will be cheaper and I can also offer insurance on certain International orders. I am looking forward to implementing the changes at my online gallery/shop and seeing if any adjustment need to be made.

Listen While I Work - My Top 10 for May 18, 2007

  1. "Who Knew (Bimbo Jones Radio Edit)" - Pink
  2. "I Could Fall In Love With You" - Erasure
  3. "All of Your Love (Jimmypop Remix)" - Hellogoodbye
  4. "Just A Girl" - Ian Van Dahl
  5. "Talisman" - Étienne Daho
  6. "She's Madonna" - Robbie Williams & Pet Shop Boys
  7. "La Vie En Rose" - Belinda Carlisle
  8. "I've Got You Memorized" - Ivy
  9. "Deeper Into You" - Johnny Hazzard
  10. "Save a Place on the Dancefloor for Me" - Dawn Tallman

Green denotes new entry.
Song links will take you to the iTunes listing if you have iTunes on your computer.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

"Ugly Betty" - Season Finale


Yes, this is one of my favorite shows. Betty is the everyday girl, charming and real who works in a world where everyone is so preoccupied with being too cool for school, perfect, popular, stylish, and superior (i.e. fake). A true reflection on society? I think so. I guess I see a little of myself in Betty, honestly don't we all? Yes, I have even walked into a glass door at a restaurant and I giggle when my feet are massaged.

The season finale airs tonight on ABC.

On The Drawing Board: Hitting the Beach

Here is what I got done yesterday, a very productive day. At this rate I think I may finish this weekend.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

A song for today...


"Dear God" - Midge Ure (1989)
Unfortunately I could only find a partial video.

Lyrics

Dear God, is there somebody out there?
Is there someone to hear my prayer?
I'm a simple man with simple words to say
Is there some point in asking?
Asking for more only got us where we are today
Lost and alone and afraid

(video begins here)
Give me, love for the lonely
Give me, food for the hungry
Give me, peace in a restless world
Give me, hope for the children
Give me, a worldwide religion
Give me, peace in a restless world

Dear God, can you hear me crying?
A whole world crying
Looking for something to say
We had it all and we threw it all away
Is there somebody watching
Somebody watching over the mess that we've made
We're lost and alone and afraid

Give me, love for the lonely
Give me, food for the hungry
Give me, peace in a restless world
Give me, hope for the children
Give me, a worldwide religion
Give me, peace in a restless world

And we need to know there's something good
Though all our years of solitude go on and on and on...

Give me, love for the lonely
Give me, food for the hungry
Give me, peace in a restless world
Give me, hope for the children
Give me, a worldwide religion
Give me, peace in a restless world

Dear god, is there somebody out there,
Is there someone to hear my prayer

On The Drawing Board: Beach Bodies

Now that the weather has finally treated us to some nice days, here in New England, thoughts of the beach are on my mind. Working on this piece is really making me anxious for my trips to Provincetown at the end of June and Ogunquit at the end of July.

Despite the faces being rather small on the paper, they have come out well and come along quickly.

Monday, May 14, 2007

On The Drawing Board: Beach Fun


Though I have been working on the layouts of the commissioned works I have taken on, it's been too long since I've put pastel to paper. The first client in my queue usually takes a few days to get back to me, which is fine, he should take the time he needs. But it pushes everything else back while I wait, and as a self supporting artist time is money and money is food and rent. Since the person who is second in line is at the point where I can start the actual piece I've gone ahead and begun. Even though his deposit has not arrived in the mail yet I am okay with beginning it because the piece is so like something I would do for myself anyway; sexy guys at the beach in Speedos!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Listen While I Work: My top 10 for May 11, 2007


  1. "Who Knew (Bimbo Jones Radio Edit)" - Pink
  2. "I Could Fall In Love With You" - Erasure
  3. "She's Madonna" - Robbie Williams & Pet Shop Boys
  4. "All of Your Love (Jimmypop Remix)" - Hellogoodbye
  5. "Just A Girl" - Ian Van Dahl (video)
  6. "Talisman" - Étienne Daho
  7. "La Vie En Rose" - Belinda Carlisle
  8. "All Out of Love" - Jenna Drey
  9. "Downtown (Dance Mix)" - Cast of "Shout!"
  10. "I've Got You Memorized" - Ivy

Green denotes new entry.
Song links will take you to the iTunes listing if you have iTunes on your computer.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Art of the Month: "Herring Cove"

For May I am featuring "Herring Cove" as my Art of The Month. Since May ends with Memorial Day here in the US, which is the unofficial start of our summer holiday season, heading back to the beach seemed the appropriate choice. For those of you who have been to this seaside destination, you are familiar with the long trek through the hot sandy dunes to reach the isolated, sun kissed oasis for boys in (and often out of) bikinis.

As the Art of The Month the magnet and all prints of "Herring Cove", including the 8.5" x 11", 13" x 19", and the 18" x 24" full size reproductions, are 15% off at Studio1088.

Keep Feeling Human League

Human League


"All I Ever Wanted" - 2001


"Tell Me When" - 1995


"One Man in My Heart" - 1995


"Soundtrack to a Generation" - 1990

Friday, May 11, 2007

Hosting company EMC offline, affects Studio1088

What I hope will be a brief temporary outage at EMC Webhosting, has made my website and no doubt countless others, inaccessible. It's 10:45 pm and it looks like the last email I was able to receive came in at 9:45 pm Eastern Daylight Time (NYC).

So if you've been having trouble getting to www.studio1088.com just keep trying. It will return as soon as EMC fixes whatever is wrong.

UPDATE 11:29 PM: Studio1088.com is back online!!! Yipee

Work on Commissions

I know...I am overdue to post pics of my next work in progress. "Strength" came out April 26th, and typically I would have at least started something new by now. Well I have been working. The thing is, I have had numerous requests for commissioned works and I have been communicating back and forth with the clients to transform their ideas into a sketch. Once I get their approval on the layout then I can begin. So the beginning process takes a bit longer as we go back and forth, often a partner has to be consulted as well, so it gets slowed down. That's one of the drawback with commissions.

One of the things I like about them is taking someone else's concept and putting my own take on it. I don't accept every commission that comes along. The ideas still have to be something that sparks my interest.

Pictured above are the last four works that were commissioned. The sketch of "Ace" is what the client saw and approved for me to commence with.

The new projects I have taken on include, a couple getting ready for a special night out, a couple having fun at the beach, and yet another couple in a first night encounter.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

"The Worlds Greatest Erotic Art of Today" Book

The new book by Erotic Signature is available for pre-purchase. Last year they held a juried competition for artists to be part of the book. Two of my works, "Lathered Up" and "Franco" made it in. Since the book represents all flavors of erotica, be aware that this is not primarily homo-erotica. Proceeds from the sale of the book go to the Elton John Aids Foundation.

"The World's Greatest Erotic Art of Today" book will be a beautifully produced coffee table style publication printed in full color throughout, using the highest quality art papers, and bound using a French style cover.

Book Measurements:
Page size: 8.5 x 11 inches (21.6 x 27.9 centimeters)
Number of pages: 256

The book is being printed on first-rate, premium quality paper with a "12pts c/2/s" cover and "4 over 4" color printing process on 100 lbs stock; the best offered in the industry.


Saturday, May 05, 2007

Listen While I Work - My Top 10 for May 4, 2007

  1. "She's Madonna" - Robbie Williams & Pet Shop Boys
  2. "Who Knew (Bimbo Jones Radio Edit)" - Pink
  3. "I Could Fall In Love With You - Erasure (video)
  4. "Downtown (Dance Mix)" - Cast of 'Shout!'
  5. "You Know I'm No Good" - Amy Winehouse
  6. "All Out of Love" - Jenna Drey
  7. "Talisman" - Étienne Daho
  8. "Breathe" - Madison Park
  9. "Just A Girl" - Ian Van Dahl
  10. "La Vie En Rose" - Belinda Carlisle
Green denotes new entry.
Song links will take you to the iTunes listing if you have iTunes on your computer.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Phoebe

It was beautiful and mild here in Massachusetts today and as I was puttering around the home/office/studio I grabbed my camera and took a few pics of Phoebe. She found herself a nice sunny spot. I don't get a lot of sun in my place, just a few hours in the afternoon before it's blocked by the building next door.

I got Phoebe just a few months ago. She was a stray brought into the animal hospital where my boyfriend works. From this pic it's hard to tell that she is quite the wild thing.
If you missed the post on my gallery site, www.studio1088.com, the latest issue of [2] Magazine is out. Check your local news stand or bookstore.

The May/June issue features my pastel painting "Buds" on the cover with more images and an interview on the inside. I'm really proud of the fact that this is the magazines first illustrated cover ever.

For those that have followed my work for a while, you'll know that "Buds" is also the cover of the "Romentics" novel, Spare Parts.