Sunday, October 4, 2015

Jazz Legends | Dizzy Gillespie

"Legends | Dizzy", 16x20" Acrylic on Canvas

Feels like I've been working on this series forever. I was checking to see how many portraits I've posted so far, and realized this one somehow got missed. It was actually the first one of the series I did, and the one that set me off doing these portraits in the first place. I had intended to post him in between some of the earlier ones I had working photos for, but somehow he got shuffled to the back, and never made it onto the blog. 

Dizzy had so much style... He had a look that wouldn't necessarily be out of place today. In fact, my son has glasses very similar to the ones he wore. It was fun working out this piece. I had a couple photos of him without his cheeks puffed out.... although that is how he is most recognizable, I was pretty sure I would manage to mangle it if I tried to do it that way. I found an old photo with an interesting angle, and drew in the glasses and cap he sometimes wore on stage. The frantic, almost chaotic background that I started with was an attempt to convey some of the energy of the music. I continued on with this type of approach with the other pieces, but somehow I think this one has a unique feel... maybe because his music is different from some of the other performers I've done. 

I've got a couple pieces left in this series, and then that's it. I don't know what's next... I've been working on my little motion abstract pieces that will probably be worked up into a few large pieces, but at some point I know I'll get back to painting people. Maybe I can figure out a way to combine the two. I've got lots of time to figure it out. One piece at a time.