Alicia in Underland

Acrylic on Canvas
24" x 36"
May - June 2010

White Rabbit

White Rabbit

One pill makes you larger
And one pill makes you small
And the ones that mother gives you
Don't do anything at all
Go ask Alice
When she's ten feet tall

And if you go chasing rabbits
And you know you're going to fall
Tell 'em a hookah smoking caterpillar
Has given you the call
Call Alice
When she was just small

When men on the chessboard
Get up and tell you where to go
And you've just had some kind of mushroom
And your mind is moving slow
Go ask Alice
I think she'll know

When logic and proportion
Have fallen sloppy dead
And the White Knight is talking backwards
And the Red Queen's "Off With Her Head!"
Remember what the Dormouse said:
"Feed your head
Keep your head"

— lyrics by Grace Slick

— music by Jefferson Airplane

Queen of Hearts Dormouse

Notes on Painting Alicia in Underland

Mon Apr 26th
Alicia in art class tonite liked my Pink-Wink portrait and asked me to do her portrait too. Showed me an interesting photo of herself in a ballet tu-tu.

Alicia in TuTu?

Wed May 12th
Thought that doing a fun painting would keep me painting when stuck on painting the larger star painting restarted last month. Wrote Alicia about a copy of her portrait to see if she were serious enough about her portrait to buy the canvas. She was, but she no longer had the jpeg image, only a printout. She would ask her girlfriend who may still have it on her cell phone. She did.

Thurs May 13th
Alicia emailed the jpeg to me. Emailed it to Chromatics for a slide conversion.

Mon May 17th
Alicia called to say she had time to pick up the canvas. But Chromatics did not have the slide ready. 615-254-0063 Plaza does not have a 24x32 canvas which fit the proportions of the photo. Will 24x36 be too big? No...I can add something interesting in the extra 4 inches at the bottom.

Thurs May 20th
Met Alicia at the BP station on White Bridge. Picked up Alicia's slide at Chromatics: $6.46 At Plaza, she bought a 24x36 canvas, a liter of mars black, and a tube of fluorescent red: $36+ We then collected her paintings from the art room at NSCC.

Fri May 21st
Traced Alicia's portrait from slide onto 24x36 canvas.

Sun May 23rd
Penciled in more details of Alicia's portrait. Attempted to pencil in eyes in Alicia portrait.

Mon May 24th
Drew eyes for Alicia's portrait on canvas. Drawing a portrait like this is no more challenging than drawing a comic book. So make it interesting by using osmosis to paint the skin.

Fri May 28th
Painted Alicia's left arm.

Sat May 29th
Painted Alicia's remaining flesh except for hand.

Sun May 30th
Painted Alicia's hands, face, and chest.

Tues Jun 1st 2010
Painted more on Alicia. Gave her hot red lips. Alicia sent me her Looking Glass photo. Now I can tell the color of her eyes: dark brown.

Wed Jun 2nd
Painted Alicia's nose and stipled her boob.

Thurs Jun 3rd
Painted more on Alicia's face and boob.

Fri Jun 4th
Repainted Alicia's arms and eyes. Realized how to paint the splotches in Alicia's photo: with paper towel.

Sat Jun 5th
Repainted Alicia's arms and breast.

Sun Jun 6th
Adjusted middle finger on smoke hand. Have now painted most of Alicia's flesh areas. Ear needs fixing next. Then eyelashes. Finished skimming The Master and his Emissary. Explains why painting with anxiety is difficult to do. Also that artists are healers. In astrology, the sixth house follows the fifth. Started reading Andrew Wyeth's Autobiography in paint. Some people accept exploring the unknown with enthusiasm. Painting what you know in a way you do not know is adventure and anxiety. Worked on Alicia's ear, but probably got ins and outs backwards. Redrew Alicia's ear with pencil on paper.

Mon Jun 7th
Repainted Alicia's ear with foreshortening. Detailed hands. Started wicker chair. Collaged smoke and White Rabbit onto Alicia in Photoshop to see what they would look like. The movie I am making with Alice and the Caterpillar reciting Rumi gave me some ideas for Alicia's portrait. Printed White Rabbit image.

Tues Jun 8th
Painted yellow stripes in the wicker chair. Downloaded White Rabbit lyrics by Jefferson Airplane. Poured the fire marbling onto glass for the Alicia painting. Found the wet in wet gestures for painting the wicker chair.

Wed Jun 9th
Poured clear on outline of scorpio symbol on glass. Painted wet in wet red and black eyelashes in other eye.

Thurs Jun 10th
Painted back of Alicia's wicker chair with two shades of green. Painted her dress black. Painted scorpio symbol with fluorescent red. Then overpainted with hooker's green.

Fri Jun 11th
Wicker chair still sticky. Poured more black on Alicia's dress. Overpainted scorpio symbol with thick hookers green coating. Streaked more titanium wisps in the 16x16" tempered glass to simulate smoke. Added another digital ground coat on report cover. Sized and printed champagne glass. Fit Dormouse, being dunked by hare and hatter, around glass rim. Attempt to print White Rabbit failed. Paper jammed.

Sat Jun 12th
Glazed wicker chair with pthalo blue. Poured black into upper part above Alicia's head. Filled champagne glass with clear acrylic. Made another digital ground to try printing White Rabbit again. Paper jammed again trying to print the White Rabbit.

Sun Jun 13th
Added more glazes to Alicia.

Mon Jun 14th
Peeled up champagne glass and placed it on portrait. Tinted it with off white. Looks like glass is held between two fingers. Peeled up fire and placed it on portrait. Added shoes to Mad Hatter and March Hare in Photoshop.

Tues Jun 15th
Blotched outside part of left arm on right with paper towel. Then splotched right arm blacker. Painted another layer of black on dress. Added flo red flames to fire. Failed to print on digital ground once again. Copied Dormouse and White Rabbit, and Queen of Hearts. Poured clear over Dormouse and White Rabbit photocopies.

Wed Jun 16th
More detailing on Alicia portrait. Photoshopped an image of the Queen of Hearts.

Thurs Jun 17th
Worked on nostrils more in portrait: very picky about picking Alicia's nose. Played with decoupage on Alice creatures.

Fri Jun 18th
Detailed nostrils and lip of Alicia portrait. Realized later that Alicia was born 4 days before I began my art diary in 1980. Placed scorpio symbol on Alicia painting.

Sat Jun 19th
Repainted groove between nose and lip. Talked to Lynn about her paper on metaphor as I painted the Queen of Hearts on glass.

Sun Jun 20th
Peeled up the Queen of Hearts skin and placed it on Alicia's wicker chair. Yesterday poured a rectangle of clear acrylic 4.5x6". After drying, coated it with 2 layers of Golden's digital ground gloss. Peeled up rectangle yesterday and placed on glass to dry. Today, taped rectangle to center of used sheet of regular paper. Taped on all 4 sides with masking tape. From Photoshop, printed Dormouse and White Rabbit successfully!!!!! However, Dormouse was too big and rabbit faced wrong way! Poured another coat of clear acrylic. Pulled up Queen of Hearts to remove water bubbles. Replaced it. Began cutting out smoke puffs for cigarette. Took pix of myself in mirror at Max's holding Lisa's wine glasses.

Mon Jun 21st
Added smoke to cigarette. Managed to collage wisp fragments into a snake and a bird imbedded in smoke. Visited Yo and Maricel visiting Eva. Took photo of Maricel holding a wine glass between two fingers very clumsily, but it can be done.

Tues Jun 22nd
Removed part of smoke. Smoke now looks like a tyranosaurus about to eat a dodo bird. Trimmed Queen of Hearts skin more finely. Replaced it on canvas. Started White Rabbit painting on glass. Painted more on White Rabbit.

Wed Jun 23rd
Outlined scorpio symbol with hot red. Finished painting White Rabbit. Painted a clear coat over it. Then a thicker coat. Printed Dormouse dunked by Hare and Hatter on clear acrylic with digital ground taped on all 4 sides. Cut out skin of Dormouse dunking and placed it on the champagne glass. Played with placement of White Rabbit. Browsed Taschen's Manet book. Manet worked very long to make his paintings look like quick sketches.

Thurs Jun 24th
Placed the White Rabbit and smeared a little yellow underneath his right foot. Poured clear acrylic around Dormouse dunking on champagne glass. Painted more green outline around champagne hand. About finished with Alicia in Underland.

Fri Jun 25th
Glossed Queen and glazed Alicia's face in portrait. Sent Alicia a photo of her portrait. Poured clear over Queen and around Queen.

Sat Jun 26th
Poured more clear around Queen. Glossed portrait face some more.

Sun Jun 27th
Glossed remaining skin areas of Alicia portrait.

Mon Jun 28th
Wrote lyrics of White Rabbit song on back of Alicia's portrait.

Tues Jun 29th
Cannot tell if White Rabbit's Grace Slick is singing "Keep your head" or "Feed your head".

Wed Jun 30th
On back of Alicia's portrait, changed "Keep your head...Keep your head" to "Feed your head...Keep your head".
An appropriate moral ending to this portrait.

Alicia in Firepit