Saturday, April 5, 2014

Popeye's Flying Boat

Popeye's flying boat (more flying boat than seaplane) from the Fleisher Studios color 2 reeler "Popeye The Sailor Meets Ali Baba's  Forty Thieves" (1937)

Popeye's Flying Boat in the water (with Olive Oyl on the pier and Wimpy at the radio)

Popeye's Flying Boat lifting off from the water

Popeye's Flying Boat in flight (no seat belts)

Sunday, March 16, 2014

hummus vs humus

Before ordering or eating hummus one should always be sure that it is hummus and not humus. Spelling matters.

The first time I came across hummus on a menu I wasn't familiar with it although I was familiar with the term humus and I thought they were the same thing (at the time I also wasn't aware that they are pronounced differently).

hummus (noun)
a paste of pureed chickpeas usually mixed with sesame oil or sesame paste and eaten as a dip or sandwich spread

humus (noun)
Nonliving, finely divided organic matter in soil, derived from microbial decomposition of plant and animal substances. Ranging in colour from brown to black, it consists primarily of carbon but also contains nitrogen and smaller amounts of phosphorus and sulfur. As it decomposes, its components are changed into forms usable by plants. Humus is classified according to how well it is incorporated into the mineral soil, the types of organisms involved in its decomposition, and the vegetation from which it is derived. It is valued by farmers and gardeners because it provides nutrients essential for plant growth, increases the soil's water absorption, and improves soil workability.

Monday, March 10, 2014


Explosion of the Spanish flagship during the Battle of Gibraltar, 25 April 1607 by Cornelis Claesz van Wieringen, c1621

The explosion isn't in Industrial Light and Magic style but it is interesting that the flames are in Spanish red and yellow. Note the sails of each ship are blown to the left while the Spanish ship's sails are all blown away from the center of the explosion

detail #1 (from near the top of the painting)
a brush for cleaning a cannon bore and 2.5 people

detail #2
a drum, 2 men and, likely, the other half of the guy seen in detail #1 (that must be one tight fitting hat). The guy at the bottom left appears to wear a bandolier of cartridges for his rifle or arquebus

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Word of the Day : pandiculate

painting by and of Joseph Ducreux : Self-Portrait, Yawning,  before 1783. Oil on canvas, 45 x 35 in.
Self-Portrait, Yawning, Joseph Ducreux, before 1783. Oil on canvas, 45 x 35 in. 
pandiculate : To fully stretch the torso and upper limbs, typically accompanied by yawning.

Thursday, February 27, 2014


This might help those who can't remember the difference between verso and recto.

Kneeling Nun, verso, by Martin van Meytens, c1731
click to embiggen
Kneeling Nun, verso, by Martin van Meytens, c1731

a notable detail of the painting revealed below

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Chuck Close at work

photo of Chuck Close working on his painted portrait of Eric, 1990

Chuck Close at work. From Graphis Magazine #313 (no date printed but I think it is from around 1998) It is an interesting insight to how he works.  It looks like a two inch square grid at a 45ยบ angle, he starts at the top blocking color in several rows, and then each grid tile is given a "dot."

 At first it might appear to be that he fills in a band of the grid from the top down but compared to the finished piece and there were changes made in the corners. Aside from the background there is a little use of line that extends outside of an individual grid box. For example, part of his glasses and part of the shirt collar.

The lift he uses to raise himself to paint higher portions of the painting appears to be a Big Joe Lift In-Between Handling Manual Stacker IBH1018 or a very similar model.

Another photo in the article shows Close working in a different workspace where the painting can be lowered down into a hole in the floor. When he moved studios he retired his Big Joe lift and started moving the painting. 

Below is the finished painting.