Thursday, February 7, 2008

The Future of Art Enforcement

was one of those quintessential childhood movies (now THERE'S something to make parents everywhere squirm). It came out in 1987, so I was 13 years old. It had all kinds of things in it that are perfect for a 13 year old boy to see: guns, action, robots, and breasts. Or at least hookers, and they had breasts, so that was close. It was the first R-rated movie my mom let me and my friends watch (then, as now, violence was okay, but not nudity). What a great movie! I loved it- it was like a big comic-book brought to life. And as far as I know, other than leaving me with a tendency to say "I'd buy that for a dollar!" and randomly ask "Can you fly, Bobby?", it's had no long-term negative effect on me. Your results may vary.

Cut to 20 years later. It's been ages since I've seen it on TV, and I never picked it up on DVD. Whatever company currently owns the rights decided to release a twentieth-anniversary edition of it. I found a pretty cheap copy online, and figured I'd give it a go, even though I've been burned by trying to relive the past by watching TV I loved as a child (I'm sorry, there were no good episodes of "A-Team" or "Knight Rider". We all had terrible taste in television in the '80's.). So, for the 2nd annual New Year's Day watchathon, I queued up Robocop and crossed my fingers.

You know what? It's still pretty good. The effects are a little dated, but the story itself is solid. The jokes are still funny, the lines good, but now there's a bit more to take in than the first time around. It's a lot easier to sympathize with Murphy, forcibly taken from his family and made to give up the life he knew (well, he was dead, so it's to be expected). It's certainly easy to imagine the big corporations taking over more and more of our lives as the government fails all around us. Though it'll probably be Microsoft who takes control of everything. Anyway, still a good movie, and worth a watch.

Okay, finally, the picture. I pretty much cranked this out shortly after watching the movie. I started with a soft-leaded pencil for dark, heavy marks- I didn't want to finesse the picture. I wanted it angular and solid. I was really pretty pleased with it- other than the gun (I've GOT to learn how to place my drawings better), I really liked it.

Then I dropped it into photoshop. This was originally to be posted when the Batman picture was, but as I started messing with the picture, I realized I wanted to try something specific with it. So I switched to the Batman, and then came back to this last night (which is unusual; i almost always work on the coloring the night before a post is due). Anyway, what you see is mostly what I wanted to do. Basically, a layer of a few shades of gray, with lots and lots of 'brush'strokes of different shades of gray. I REALLY like how it turned out (again, except for the gun). It's a 'painterly' style I'm really looking forward to trying some more. In fact, I think I have another picture this will work well with...

But we'll see.

Anyway, thanks for stopping by. Hope to see you again soon. Have a great weekend!

Music: "Acrobat" - U2

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