Harold George #52: President Bush's Game

Today I decided to go back into my archives and talk a little about a painting I did a while back while I was in school.

1. I came up with an idea for class. It was something controversial at the time, and I love stuff like that. I eat it for breakfast. My idea was to create just what a lot of conspiracy theorists were already thinking... that Bush was part of this elaborate cover-up that was responsible for the 9-11 events. I know this is a touchy subject for most of you, but please bare with me as I go on. 
The idea first came in small blotches of comparing Bush to Hitler. Please don't ask me how, it is just the way I was thinking at the time. These ideas sometimes come without any labels or coherency. So, I decided to create some thumbnails, as I often do with everything that will eventually be a painting or a comic book page.

2. After choosing my idea, which happened to be the chess game, I decided to fish for some reference. Who in their right mind knows how to draw Bush without any reference? Well, there may be many of you who do, and I won't judge, but I for once was not part of that crowd. I settled on this picture because it kind of had the same angle as the next picture I chose for the game.

3. I came across this picture at the same time as I did Bush, but I just numbered it second only because it had the angle I wanted. I used Getty Images as a search for images as you can tell by the watermark that they love to put on their $700+ pictures. 

4. Of course, my idea was to have Bin Laden as one of the chess pieces and so here I was again, hunting for more references. With all the hype about him at the time, I was bound to find some, and man, google yet again was my savior. 

5. Once I got all my pieces together, it was time to familiarize myself with the figure by sketching it out as a tighter render than the thumbnails. This process is not necessary but I like to do it because it allows me to experiment with the features before I jump on to the masonite board which I was going to use to draw the image. I chose to do this freehand on the board as opposed to projecting it, just so I can add a little bit of my personality to it. Sometimes projecting a photograph and outlining it can become a bit mechanic.

Final. I tackled this painting in oils using a series of different sized brushes. The painting is 18x24 and it is on masonite board. I chose this color palette because although this was a very dark subject I wanted to convey the ironic feeling of warmth and trust behind the image. Using contrast colors through out, I finished the piece in a about 2 weeks time. You can view the full image by visiting my site here

...and that's the artist truth.


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