Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Watts Happening!

scott waterman ink watercolor gouache paper 

Streets so steep you pray your brakes (or your knees), won’t fail but most of Los Angeles is a big flat basin. This makes for a big sky. Famously we have all sorts of palm trees, ridiculous enough in and of themselves but in fact there are endless whimsical and absurd forms to see silhouetted against our technicolor sunsets. When I first moved here I was so taken with shapes against the sky that this became the subject of my painting for years. 

scott waterman ink watercolor gouache paper

scott waterman ink watercolor gouache paper

scott waterman ink watercolor gouache paper

scott waterman ink watercolor gouache paper

scott waterman ink watercolor gouache paper

scott waterman ink watercolor gouache paper

After visiting numerous times then living in L.A. for close to fourteen years I finally made it to Watts Towers the last day of 2016. If I was disappointed it was only because to visit inside the walled complex you must take a guided tour of about an hour’s duration and that was just not enough time for me. This crazy fabrication is fantastic even against a grey wintery sky. 

Want more?

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Book Report 2

Amelia Handegan Rooms, arrived in a gift box.

It has recently come to my attention that I am published, again.  Look, it’s a selection of my painted commissions for your perusal in not one but two more Rizzoli publications. I say two more because I was first published by Rizzoli in the late 80s. However, this is now and Windsor Smith and Amelia Handegan both got book deals for 2016 and I am there and you are here and we are all together. So let’s take a look shall we?

The cover shows her own place.

The chapter heading for Birdsong reproduces my sketch.

This is my sketched, reversed and off color in the book,

A spread from Rooms showing  a part of my mural.

Birdsong, the house and its hallway covered in my mural.

Also seen in Rooms this painting I copied from an anonymous 19th c work.

I’ve probably done enough work for Amelia since 1988 to warrant a book unto itself but Amelia Handegan Rooms is about her work, beautiful work. I’ve done a number of large scale murals for her interiors and it’s always kind of thrill just to be able to make a painting so large, forty feet wide for instance and that was just one panel out of four. In "Rooms" you see glimpses of that mural project, (for a house called Birdsong);  a sliver of painted panels I did for Amelia’s own foyer; and a copy I made of a 19th c. hand painted wallpaper for one of her clients .

The cover of Windsor's book hints at my silver leaf painting inside.

The top photo is from the book, the other two are mine.
Clearly the colors change significantly based on what the silver reflects.

Fyi the drawing for the wall painting seen above.

Another page from Windsor's book, same room, opposite end.

The Windsor Smith book, Windsor Smith Homefront Design for Modern Living, came out earlier in the year. There’s just one project of mine in the book, I’ve only done one project for Windsor but it’s a doozy and it ended up in Architectural Digest. It’s another unique opportunity for me, painting on silver, and painting an entire room in Chinoiserie. Oh and there’s a perverse thrill in hanging with a Picasso, rather a Picasso hangs on top of my painting.

What’s next? Tell me.

That's me standing before a stretched canvas for my current project.


Do you want to see my other book report? Follow this link- My first book report.

Friday, October 7, 2016


Those blog posts, Pinterest accounts, Tumblr sites, and the like that present a random selection of images without credit, caption, or context they’re a bit of bĂȘte noire for me. I like to know what I’m looking at and especially if I like it where I can find more and more about it. So is that what I’m doing? Not quite. All the images are mine; seen with my own eyes in cities and places I’ve recently traveled to including Baltimore, Philadelphia, New York, and the eastern shore of Maryland. Enjoy the images and know that I’ll be happy to tell where they came from and anything else that might help. Just ask.

In the meantime I’m working on something big, relatively big, rather big actually so stay close.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Song For A Future Generation

Song For A Future Generation

That is a song sung 95 generations ago which sits atop a hill in Brentwood under a tent at the Getty Center. If you think of the Mogao cave paintings as songs that’s a better way of interpreting them than dull prose and you slip easily under their spell, bizarre, fantastic, and wonderful. The ideas behind these murals are stories from Buddhism when Buddhism entered present day China from India through the Silk Road. The Silk Road, the internet of its day, spread not just silk and goods and people but ideas across the globe. And consider this: the day of the Silk Road lasted at least a thousand years.

What’s sobering is that the stories these paintings tell are the issues of today like sympathy and understanding over ignorance. So here we are in present day Los Angeles, so privileged to be able to experience these marvelous works, recreated to scale, exactly as they appear in Dunhuang. And summer nights, Friday and Saturday at the Getty Center are the best: no crowds, live music, and the cool of the night. Failing that here’s a taste, some images, links to videos, and the Getty site itself. I hope you will enjoy.

In China this is what the exterior of the caves looks like.

Also in China near the caves this charming and hokey stage recreation of the paintings.

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