Dead Or Alive
click on image for a closer look
Every picture tells a story, don’t it?
Another self portrait taken from the family archives.
I’ve been making “album covers” for cd mixes I post over at my music blog, Now That’s What I Call Bullshit, so when this composition had room for words at the top it just seemed natural to add them.
Of course that changes everything, and the painting takes on other functions. Is it an album cover? poster? magazine illustration?
Whichever words I chose were going to be interpreted in as many ways as there are viewers. Since I’m not always going to be there to explain, I’m willing to let go of that right now. However, here are some clues.
I picked “Dead Or Alive” largely to go with the western theme. I’m sleeping with a toy Winchester, the gun that tamed the west.
I used gold lettering for the same reason. I considered “Wanted”, but chose to avoid the implication of “Loved”.
There is nothing in the picture to make it time specific. The furniture is colonial style, but manufactured in the ’50′s, and the red Hudson’s Bay blanket has been available since the 18th century.
The photo I worked from was taken in innocence, as was my sleeping with my rifle like a good little cowboy. Or was it? On the other hand I’m about the same age as the kids gunned down in New Town, and with that, “Dead Or Alive” takes on a different meaning.
There are many ways to look at this. The painting asks a lot of questions but reveals few answers. Or too many.
From here you are on your own.