Thursday, February 26, 2015

Old World

This is one of my favourites. I had a lot of fun painting this.

Acrylic 8 x10

This image was inspired by The Burning Hell's tune 'Old World', a catchy piece of music that talks about birth from the perspective of a baby who is born and finds the world outside the womb is not what it is cracked up to be.

The narrator speaks of the easy life he* had as a wee fetus, just hanging out, smiling for ultrasounds and making plans for life after birth.
From the universe I planned out the world I would create,
I'd ride a scooter or a bus
and I would go on dates
And in the evening I'd stay in and concentrate
On drafting plans for my own benevolent state
Our narrator finds his little universe in the womb comfortable, but ultimate kind of boring, and looks forward to getting out, even though he senses there may be some let-down. The baby narrator has no idea until the day comes.
Then I was finally born into the disease of this world
and so were thousands of other little boys and girls.
We shook our little fists at the sky and cried and hurled our insults in our anger
Unfurled our flags and banners and waved them and we said
Take us back to the old world
We don't want this ugly new world
We were much happier back then
We want back in
Take us back to the old world
When I came up for this I wanted to attribute a sort of indignation and sorrow to a crying newborn. The fetal image is supposed to act as a sort of thought-bubble/wordless scream coming from this obviously pissed off baby (who, incidentally I am told, bears a resemblance to Phil Collins).

I used an acrylic wash for the background colour.  I wanted to use colours that were kind of warm and hazy in order to reflect the narrator's descriptions of the womb as a tiny universe, but I also wanted to bring to mind blood and tissue and the human body.

I don't what to call the style, but I wanted for the baby to look like it had been sketched quickly, with a marker or something to that effect (it's actually, you guessed it, black acrylic paint).

My only regret with this piece is not stopping before I added the text above the baby's head.  I feel like the sentiment was already apparent without people over the head with it.  Oh well.

*I don't actually know what gender the narrator is supposed to be.  I just think 'he' because the singer, Matthias Korn, is a dude.

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UPDATE:  I tweeted this to @theburninghell and got a lovely bit of appreciation in return.

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