La commission

No, that's not a sweatband on the man's head, that's his tonsure. Remember Friar Tuck from Robin Hood? Same haircut.

To be more specific, the monk pictured is Saint Dominic. He's the focal point of this commissioned notebook I've almost finished. The client is going to give it to a good friend for Christmas, as a general memories book.

The gift recipient is from Managua, Nicaragua. From what I understand, she likes Catholic imagery for its aesthetics as well as its meaning. So I looked up some info on Managua and found its patron saint is Santo Domingo de Guzman (St. Dominic). Her family also has a vacation home in a tiny Texas border town that holds a prickly-pear cactus festival each year. And her husband raises reptiles. Three references to the recipient, all in that one bit of photo!

So I finally got to use this cool-as-hell white paper that has a lizard-skin pattern. (See, I'm not hoarding! I'm using the good stuff!) The gift recipient likes green, so I rubbed a bit of green acrylic into the grooves of the "lizard skin." I also chose a notebook with acid-free pages and reinforced the bottom edges of the front and back covers, since it's meant to last for a while.

I was just going to assemble straight photos of cactus around the saint. But then my eye fell on the cheap paper I had left over from LK Ludwig's class, the stuff we used for transfers. So I added cactus transfers to the regular photos for more depth.

These are the bits of plastic rosary I was talking about earlier, the ones I painted to look like copper. I think the one on the left turned out better than the one on the right. In real life, the one on the left looks more orangish-coppery, and it's easier to see the detail of the figure's face. (Sorry I couldn't zoom into it better.) I think, but I'm not sure, that the one I prefer was coated with an orange/black wash that tended more to the orange side. Guess I'll just have to keep noodling with it to find out.

I hope to be done with the whole commission tomorrow. And I have the day off, so maybe I can also catch a movie with The Husband, who's currently working from home.