from the jazz age to the space age

Monthly Archives: August 2010




from “the snow queen” by hans christian andersen ~ “kay’s destiny”

all grown up, kay finds his destiny lies to the north, in the palace of the snow queen. leaving his novels, his absinthe, & the pallid bust of pallas, the snowflakes spirit him away…









buy a print on etsy
















i think, for the “snow queen” series of paintings, if i had to list all of my influences i would say:
klimt~ obviously, the snow queen herself owes a lot to klimt’s feminine aesthetic. not to mention kay’s painting.
edward burne jones~ the androgynous angels with their copious fabric.
bram stoker’s dracula~ i don’t care how badly this is acted, visually it was my go-to film for years. eiko ishioka is a goddess of fabric manipulation! and don’t get me started on gary oldman. the most gorgeous creature on film! also, kay’s drinking absinthe here. 
edgar allan poe~ there’s a reoccurring raven in the paintings. kay also has a “pallid bust of pallas” above his door. in the initial draft of the story i’d rewritten kay’s name as “allan“. yeah, i know~ which brings me to…
kafka~ hence why kay remained kay. what can i say, this set of painting was done between 18 & 20 & reflects a young person’s obsessions.  
mies van der rohe~ i fell in love with his pavilion (barcelona)chair. a fanciful version exists in this painting. 
john major~ i used to watch “questions with the prime minister & had a total crush on him. i don’t care if he’s conservative, he was terribly witty. kay wears major’s polka dot tie. i swear that man didn’t own a different tie. 
beauty & the beastcogsworth & lumiere are on the mantel (in a way).




the original painting is india ink, watercolor, & oil pastel. it was painted on strathmore bristol smooth 100 lb paper. this, before i found the heavy canson i work on now, was my paper of choice. the smooth paper surface allows excellent application of india ink without snags or feathering. it’s crispness also enables a precise paint application & jewel-like colors. the painting measures 17″ x 14″.


there are actually 20+ paintings in this series as i intended for it to be a book. i never submitted it to anyone & for the most part these painting have been covered in paper for the last 17 years.







“kay leaves the palace of ice” from the “snow queen”.


this scene depicts the moment when kay has solved the snow queen’s puzzle & has become his own master as well as a won a new pair of skates. however, he’s not ready to grow up & leaves the palace of ice with gerda.  

the window is based on the famous rose window in chartres cathedral. 

the snow queen wears a victorian dress & a norwegian headdress.


the original painting is india ink, watercolor & oil pastel, as well as black acrylic paint. acrylic absorbs light rather than reflecting it so i rarely use it. i like my paintings to have the luminosity that watercolors impart. however, i used always used it on the snow queen’s hair. i wanted to her to be devoid of light, like a black hole. i also used it on a few of her interiors. it’s flatness gives the stained glass the illusion of glowing light. the painting measures 14″ x 17″. it was painted on strathmore bristol smooth 100 lb. paper. i wrote about this paper here: you can buy a print of this painting here: etsy prints!   





“the snowflakes vanquished”

the snow queen’s palace is guarded by her snowflake army. unsure of how to reach kay, gerda’s frozen breath becomes angels who subdue the army.





i love drawing armor, especially fantasy armor. this was painted in the midst of my klimt / pre-raphaelite infatuation. or maybe it was love bc i still adore them, they just don’t quite influence my art as much as they did at this time. 



edward burne jones & his androgynous pre-raphaelite people was a huge influence on me. also, the angels don’t have nipples or navels bc they’re not human. that used to matter to me. i’ve since mellowed out on the eschatological details.



the only thing that really bothers about this painting is gerda. i painted her too adult. waaaaaay too adult. i was going for 12 & she looks 21. in my defense, this was one of the first paintings in the series i did & i don’t think i’d mentally settled on their ages yet. i think, a lot, about repainting it, but i doubt i will. eventually you have to just let things go or you’ll lose your mind. the original painting is india ink, watercolor & oil pastel. it was painted on strathmore bristol smooth 100 lb. paper. this, before i found the heavy canson i work on now, was my paper of choice. the smooth paper surface allows excellent application of india ink without snags or feathering. its crispness also enables a precise paint application & jewel-like colors. the painting measures 17″ x 14″.  


print on etsy



from “the snow queen” by hans christian andersen ~ firey haired gerda goes in search of her friend kay, but the river lulls her asleep with dreams of endless summer.




winter is all around her. from the tall pines to the small white sun. she happened upon some flowers daring to brave the cold & a boat willing to take her where she wanted to go…




the original painting is india ink, watercolor, & oil pastel

i don’t know if it’s because my grandpa was a navy man or because my moon’s in scorpio, but i am crazy about sailor suits.


purchase this print on etsy!

“The Snow Queen”

she wears a kokoshnik (russian crown) & a fanciful mail & gauze dress. appearing out of a storm of snowflakes, her midnight black hair whips around her.

growing up in sunny southern california i’ve always romanticized the snow. the first time i saw it i threw myself face first into it, thinking it would be as soft as it looked. but instead it was hard & sharp! that started my love affair with it. it’s definitely not what it appears to be & neither is its queen!
“the snow queen” by hans christian andersen is one of my favorite fairy tales. when he was a child his father died. his mother told him, “the snow queen has taken your father away.” what kind of impact that had on his psyche can only be guessed, but he also wrote a story called, “the ice maiden”. while very similar to the snow queen, it’s meant for an adult audience. it concerns a young man & ends with his death by the queen of ice.
anderson clearly seemed influenced by the norse/germanic goddess, hela. hela was ruler of niflheim, freezing realm of the dead.


renegade sf pretty cool. there were a lot of artists there & it was cool to see their prints in real life. i have some new ideas for packaging as well. it was incredibly hot so karl & I had to take frequent breaks outside. unfortunately, i was too shy to take any photos.  


some of the art/artists i saw~



this print was exquisite in real life
http://www.noraaoyagi.typepad.com/
http://www.etsy.com/shop/noraaoyagi





not only were her prints beautiful, her packaging was top notch!
www.theblackapple.typepad.com
http://www.etsy.com/shop/theblackapple





& this guy’s art was really well done. i love sharks in suits. i wonder if he’s a lawyer?
www.letsshare.typepad.com
http://www.etsy.com/shop/berkleyillustration







karl outside the renegade craft fair


now i have to get back to work. i have 2 commissions from the band “novacriminal”. i have a mountain of past paintings to edit & put up as well. whew!