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Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Another Great Opportunity... Um!

One in a series of sketches to nowhere!

If you know me, as an artist, I always gave it one hundred percent... almost to a fault. I've lost jobs because I was too tight, too colorful, too intense, too concise, too, oh, I dunno... too... too! I always approached every job like this is the one was gonna send me over the top. One that will make me the most important illustrator America has ever witnessed. I had that kind of intensity even when creating art for storyboards and print ads. I sometimes took that foolish approach as a motivating factor. An attitude that got the creative juices flowing and one that would really challenge my ability to visually solve a problem. I sometimes would believe my own advertising pretending that a job was more important than it actually was.

And, this bear sketch is a prime example.

The sketch, which I really like, was done at the LaBrea Tar Pits museum before it became the New George Page Museum. I was hired though a contact at Art Center to create black and white art for the kiosks that informed the patrons which animal was which in the displays and on the wall murals. I somehow talked myself into believing that this job was gonna blossom into a full time archeological illustrative career. I must have created about forty or more studies like this thinking it was for another mural that I was gonna get to paint.

And for this opportunity of a lifetime, I'd be paid $800.00!

I must admit it was very exciting to be with paleontologists and geologists back downstairs amongst all those prehistoric bones and half assembled dire wolves, sloths, saber toothed tigers and wooly mammoths. I was employed there for the amount of time it took me to finish the kiosk drawings, which as of five years ago, was still there illustrating the displays. 

They even let me sign my art and the signature is still there... last time I checked!

Copyright 2013/ Ben Bensen III