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Another Watercolor Study


4 1/2" x 9"
watercolor on paper

Kinda riding a wave of creative energy right now. I'd like to get this composition to a large oil canvas very soon. I certainly like the immigrant's vibe and the effect his eyes have on the viewer.

Comments (9)


I know that tape is your thing; however, I imagine this one affixed to the wall with old-fashioned, square flat-cut nails...something he may have worked with.

The nails have torn & creased the corners of the drawing.

Maybe some of the nails weren't driven in far enough, & the weight of the nails has caused them to cut down through the plaster over time, "stretching" the nail holes & pulling away bits of plaster & wallpaper. Maybe one of the nails has turned downward (if not one in the picture, the one holding the frame), another has fallen out...

I can also imagine holes eaten into the paper by termites, ants, or woodworms.

Age, wear, & decay...like the temporal nature of tape.

Just ideas...use them, or don't.

Jonathan Hohensee:

I got a whole bunch of sketches from a comic book convention recently and was lost on how to decorate my room with them, I think I might steal your idea from this painting.


Very interesting nuances to my piece.

Maybe this is how YOU experience art....HOW WOULD I DO IT BETTER?

Yet other art appreciaters are actually interested in the artist's point of view and visual message. Warts and all.

I don't think I could go to a musician I really liked and say, "Hey, you could add more horns in the back and double the baseline. Then I'd like your song better."

I'm sure the musician tried and discarded MANY IDEAS that shaped his final work.


Couldnt help but think this guy had the same eyes as "Ben" in the others group on Lost. Weird.



No, no, no...just ideas...not better, just different.

I like the piece...no "buts"...I was merely offering my impression given your original impression.

The value of your theoretical suggestion to a musician would depend on how well you understand music. It's one thing to suggest simple embellishment (add this, double that), another thing entirely to understand the communicative nuances of art (or a particular discipline) & see where subtle alterations might intensify--perhaps even clarify--an effect that the artist was going for in the first place.

Whether [he] is open to suggestion in the first place--or whether he will use the suggestion...that's up to [him].

If you aren't interested, I don't have to make suggestions. Just say the word. No problem either way.


I find it interesting that the portrait is square to the wall, yet the frame is askew. Is that a comment on how people view others?


I get it. I enjoy your participation. Sometimes I misunderstand.


The frame is an intregal bit of commentary and you nailed part of it. Another bit of explaination involves how immigrants don't quite in their new home's surroundings.

Fascinating symbolism and complexity.

To me, the collar, hair, and the vertical bars also hint at a convict. And yet I also sense depth, intensity, dignity, and perhaps a subtle kindness to his face.


Thanks for the perceptive comment. I'm interested in getting across a particular psychological subconext. In this case, a sense of displacement.


John Cox is a painter, cartoonist, and illustrator for hire. For information about purchasing existing work or commissioning new work, contact him by e-mail at john555cox [at] hotmail.com.

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