Sunday, March 23, 2014

Speed Racer

Click on the image for a larger view.

When I was a kid I couldn’t wait to get home from school to watch some of my favorite shows.  There was Ultraman, Spider-Man and of course Speed Racer. I enjoyed them all but something about Speed Racer makes it my favorite to this day. I’m sure Speed’s souped-up, gadget equipped race car, the Mach 5, was a big factor in the appeal the show had for my young mind. But today the appeal lies in Speed’s idealistic drive (forgive the pun) to always do the right thing, even in the face of great danger and without any super powers of his own. When Speed calmly but determinedly slid on his racing gloves, with that slightly crooked smirk in the corner of his mouth, you just knew the boy meant business. For me, that classic cartoon made in the late 60’s (I watched it in reruns) beats all of the reboots that have come along since.

I used acrylic paints on Crescent illustration board to paint this likeness of Speed. Fittingly, I did this as a speed painting exercise. I completed it in about 2 hours. I then came back to it a few hours later to make some tweaks. All total this is about 4 hours of work. It’s not my speediest example but for me time is not the only point of the exercise. I also strive to push beyond certain tendencies I have, certain stumbling blocks I encounter when painting: the tendency to over-work things; the tendency to get too focused on one particular part of the painting thus losing an overall view; the tendency to work too carefully and not take risks.

Doing speed paintings also helps me to be more prolific than I would otherwise be. I have a lot of ideas for personal painting projects, but with my schedule being what it is I tend to put off doing them because I think about how much time it will take for me to get them over the finish line. If I can block-in a few hours on a Saturday to pound through an idea and also build some speed of execution in the process then that’s a big win (checkered flags all waving) for me.

No comments:

Post a Comment