The Worst Thing I've Ever Done?

I almost feel pain when I look at this. It's taken me a while to confront this one, and writing about it has been very difficult. It's a traumatic experience I don't want to think about. But it's all about getting back on that horse, isn't it? So, here I go.

Sometimes you take a swing at something, like a fastball, and miss. Stee-rike. That's alright. Dig in, get ready for the next pitch.

Sometimes you swing at something -- like a pinata -- and you miss. Worse, you stagger when you swing, and flail three or four times amidst the screaming congregation. (Is that screaming or cheering? You can't tell. Keep swinging!) The pinata seems kind of soft when you club it. When you are finally knocked down and the blindfold is torn away by those who have subdued you, you do not see the cheerful sight you were anticipating. Instead there are bruises and welts and blood everywhere. Party over. No candy.

For this illustration I feel like I sorta clubbed the writer. What a crummy illo.

I work hard to make all of my work "good enough." I'm not saying that I strive for mediocrity, but there are times when things don't come together well. Maybe the concept isn't well-thought out, maybe the application of the idea isn't clear, maybe the subject doesn't inspire, maybe it's an off-day for drawing; an art slump. Still, the professional has to fight through those negatives and try to deliver a piece that is strong enough to stand on its own. At the very least you must try to hit close enough to the mark that nobody will be outraged. Well, I'm a little outraged by this one.

This was for a story about the resurgence of Betty White. All the elements that should buttress the story are there, aren't they? The crowd beneath, holding up the laptop, symbolizing the on-line campaign to persuade the producers of Saturday Night Live to have Betty White appear as host; the lotus flower, growing out of the laptop's screen, symbolizing re-birth of Betty White's popularity. Gag me. An awkward couple of concepts topped with a crummy caricature.

Does it even look like Betty White? At one point it did, but I think I managed to obliterate the resemblance as I went along.

As time was running out before deadline, I thought: "Geez, this looks lousy. I hope I can pull this thing together." I don't think I did. In desperation I pumped up the saturation of colors before I sent it; at least it would be colorful!

The End.

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