Sunday, January 31, 2010

The Substitute, a tale of danger and delight

I failed in my attempt to purchase Daniel Danger's "And that's why my hand was shaking. Because this is not a man you go and see, this is a man who summons you.", also known as Jacob's Cabin (which I'll further shorten below to simply JC). By the time I had struggled to the final checkout page the 200ish copies available had sold out. During the course of The Lost Underground Art Project this was my first experience where I had failed in an attempt to buy a poster. It was not a good feeling!

Not long afterward, Mr. Danger made a few of his other works available at his online store. My eye was initially caught by a work titled “has thou slain the jabberwock?”, which had an eerie woodland vibe similar to JC. However, I was a little slow off the mark and found that print sold out before I could purchase it. I then tried for a print called "...please don't worry. when i wake up i'll be something new." The third time was the charm.

"...please don't worry. when i wake up i'll be something new." seems to be a bit of a signature work for Danger. This was actually the 6th edition of the print. Apparently it holds special meaning to DD, and he has stated that he will periodically re-release new editions throughout his career at its original price of $35. It certainly is a beautiful print, delicate and magical. I decided that it would make a lovely Christmas gift for my daughter, who is six and half years old.

Danger has fantastic tree technique, as one can see in the detail view above.

The verbose and grammatically adventurous title is a Danger trademark.

I'm not 100% sure if I have #101 or #161, but my money is on #101.

I spent a few days searching for a frame without much luck, for the most part due to the print's odd size. I decided to bite the bullet and take it to Michael's for a custom frame job. I must say that I'm quite happy with the result.

It is a black metal frame with a beaded, brushed silver edge, along with a black mat. The silver nicely brings out some of the shimmer of the water.

Hanging in my daughter's room.

Several months on, the sting of missing out on Jacob's Cabin is starting to fade. It certainly helps to have another of the supremely talent Daniel Danger's works here to gaze at in wonder and joy.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

More from Tyler Stout's 'LOST'

In an earlier post I covered the main character portraits present in Tyler Stout's LOST. This article will cover the remaining images present on the poster.

An airplane, presumably Oceanic 815, flying over the island -- intact. Possibly a season 6 spoiler?

Hieroglyphics floating in the clouds above the island, the same as those seen on The Swan's 108-minute countdown timer.

A sparkly grey Smokey shows up in multiple places on the poster. Perhaps we'll be seeing a lot more of it in season 6.

The 4-toed statue makes an appearance. The four toes are clearly shown -- Mr. Munn are you taking notes? :-)

A Virgin Mary statue, linking the lives of Charlie Pace and Mr. Eko. One of the many connections to religion/faith on the show.

A distraught Sayid carrying Shannon after Ana Lucia's lethal shot. The Sayid/Shannon romance seemed a little forced to me, but nevertheless a striking image from a moving episode.

Hurley driving the Dharma van he found in the jungle, abandoned after the cold-blooded murder of Roger Linus by his son, Ben. Hurley and Charlie's ride down the hill is one of my favourite Lost scenes.

Either Desmond dragging the lifeless body of Kelvin after his accidental death, or Kelvin dragging Desmond off the beach following the shipwreck of the Elizabeth.

Sawyer, Jin, Michael and Walt on the raft. The raft launch was another great moment on the show.

The mysterious group who "greet" Sawyer and Michael when they wash up on shore after Walt's abduction. First presumed to be Others, later found to be survivors of Oceanic 815's tail section. Above them looks to be an island grave. Perhaps Libby's or Eko's?

Jack amidst Oceanic 815 wreckage.

An island polar bear keeping an eye on the crash site.

Another crash site observer. I believe the consensus is that this is Richard. (Alpert, not Hatch.) The other possibility would be an as-yet-unseen character from season 6.

The infamous hatch. The main mystery lever for the back end of season 1. I watched that season for the first time on DVD during the course of a couple of weeks, so wasn't bothered by the drawn-out hatch reveal. I can see how it might have been frustrating during the initial television run, though.

Dharma patches line the bottom of the poster.

And finally a shout-out to Alvar Hanso, Dharma Initiative benefactor.

I've hung the LOST poster on the wall in front of my desk, and I find my eye constantly returning to the potpurri of characters and scenes captured within. It may not be fine French cuisine, but it is a very satisfying buffet for those hungering for a generous helping of Lost.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Tyler Stout's LOST portraits

Tyler Stout's LOST, the Lost Underground Project's sixteenth and final poster, is filled to the brim with Lost characters and various scenes and symbols from the first three seasons of Lost. This article will take a closer look at each of the main character studies that appear in the print.

Dr. Jack Shephard, looking a little the worse-for-wear. Maybe this is intended to represent Jack during his bout with appendicitis near the end of season 4.

A super-hot Kate Austen. Kate looks fantastic here, though it seems like she may have found a cache of Dharma collagen on the island. Or perhaps received a lip transplant from Ilana.

James "Sawyer" Ford, his roguish charms intact, but do I detect a hint of responsibility in his eyes?

John Locke. I see a bit of MIB in this portrait, alongside a man coming to the realization that he may just be an expendable pawn after all...

Hugo "Hurley" Reyes. Funny, sweet, loyal, honest. What role will he play in the confrontation between light and dark?

Jin and Sun, looking very Season 1. Nice character work here, especially Sun whose growing defiance of her husband is all too clear.

Sayid Jarrah. This is one of the best likenesses on the poster. Especially the chest hair.

Daniel Faraday and Desmond Hume. Their lives intertwined in time and space.

Walt, his father Michael, and his faithful companion Vincent. Nice work on these. Although Michael's work seems to be done, it would be nice to see all three, if only briefly, in season 6.

Ah, Juliet. Stout does a nice job of capturing her quirky beauty here.

Charlie, Claire, and baby Aaron. I can certainly see Charlie & Claire here, though these may be slightly less successful than others in the print. Still, amazing to see how Stout communicates so much with so little.

The classic (only?) Ana-Lucia look.

Ah, Shannon and Boone. Two characters in search of an engaging plotline. Perhaps they will finally find one in season 6.

Benjamin Linus. One of the good guys. Not a bad likeness, though I'm seeing a bit of Brent Spiner's Data here as well.

And finally Mr. Eko. He died too young. RIP.

'LOST' by Tyler Stout

For months the deep red eroteme tantalized followers of the Lost Underground Art Project. The sixteenth poster would be special! Fifteen would be lost, but the sixteenth would be found! What did it all mean? For months, poster #16 remained an enigma wrapped in a mystery.

The long wait ended on December 15th, 2009. As eager fans burst through the doors of Gallery 1988 they were greeted by an overwhelming assortment of Lost art. Among them was a copy of the sixteenth poster, revealed to the public for the first time.

So how is this last poster special? Let us count the ways: First, at 24x36 it is twice as large as most other posters in the series. Second, it features nearly two dozen LOST characters, four times as many as any other DCAAPB poster. (Both The Crash and Rousseau's Transmission featured six.) Third, it was created by renowned artist Tyler Stout. Fourth, in addition to the screen prints sold online, hundreds of free lithographs were given out to Gallery 1988 attendees. Fifth, it is the only poster whose time-of-sale was not known in advance. Sixth, it features two clues for season 6. And finally, the cost of the poster was $70 rather than the $50 charged for all prior sales.

Fans were told that the sixteenth poster would go on sale the 16th of December, but were not told a specific time. Bookmarks and a tote passed out at Gallery 1988 apparently contained information that could be used to calculate the time, but the possibility of a missing bookmark threw some doubt onto the result. Not wanting to miss out, some hardy folks spent the entire day glued to their F5 key, continuously refreshing the site.

Based on information I had seen from various sources, I believed the reveal would be in the evening. I started following in earnest shortly after 7PM eastern. Around 10PM eastern I fueled up with 2 homemade cupcakes and a couple of cups of coffee and hunkered down. Having been denied on 3 of the past 4 reveals, I wasn't too hopeful for my chances on #16, but felt that I had to participate if only for the experience. By midnight eastern we were all getting a little punch drunk but having a great time trying to one-up each others' jokes. One of the more popular theories postulated that the reveal would be at 10:42pm pacific (1:42am eastern) since that was the time at which Oceanic 815 had initially been scheduled to land at LAX. This seemed like sound logic to me so I planned my pee breaks accordingly. As the clock approached 1:42 the beat of my F5 jabs quickened. By 1:41 I was down to two-second intervals. 1:42 -- nada. 1:43 -- no dice. I vowed to give up and go to bed at 2am eastern if nothing had happened by then. My cupcakes were wearing off. Besides, I really didn't have much hope of snagging #16, the holy grail of DCAAPB.

Then suddenly it was show time. First a few seconds of panic as the site seemed to go down, then the "BUY NOW", then a pounding heartbeat, then the fingers (nearly numb from hours of F5ing) trying to attain both speed and accuracy. I sped through the first three checkout screens, quickly entered credit card info, then encountered a database error. Refreshed, got to the next screen, clicked to complete the transaction, waited, waited, heart bursting, wait, wait, pound, wait, error, refresh, SOLD OUT. Silent scream. Sadness. Expletive. Refresh. Refresh. Refresh. Expletive. Resignation. Heart slowing. Congratulate the victors. Time to call it a night.

Then a couple of people on mention that although their transaction didn't seem to complete, they actually received two emails indicating a successful order. So I fire up my email, and although I'm absolutely convinced there will be nothing the darn heart starts pounding again. Then the moment of tentative bliss as two glorious emails appear, the first from Go! Merch and the second from Ronie Midfew Arts. Fortunately these were NOT followed by calls or emails canceling the order due to oversells. I was indeed order #3074. The evening's buzz kept me up until 5am that morning, but a lost night's sleep seemed a small sacrifice.

I like Tyler Stout's LOST. As a whole it is perhaps less a piece of art than some of the other posters, but each of the individual elements within are interesting and well executed. Viewed in its entirety the artwork ably samples the myriad of characters and plotlines that played out during the first 3 seasons of the show. I'll take a closer looks at these elements in subsequent posts.

For this poster I chose a crisp black wood frame with an inlay. There is already a lot happening in the poster and I didn't want the frame to add any more noise.

This time around I lucked out a bit in terms of the poster number. Although I was one of the higher order numbers, I received poster #165 of 300.

As mentioned, I'll follow-up with additional posts which examine each element of the poster in more detail.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

A Serendipitous Hanging

I re-hung a couple of my DCAAPB posters yesterday to make room for Tyler Stout's LOST. At work today I realized I had created Smokey and the Barracks. Coming soon to a theater near you. Starring Josh Holloway as Smokey and Elizabeth Mitchell as "The Barracks". Special appearance by Burt Reynolds as Bandit Prime.

Postscript: Coincidentally, Amy Lynn posted a nearly identical photo of these two prints on earlier today. We're all connected....