JOKER is awesome. Yeah, I finally got a chance to see it. Better late than never. Right?
I love that iconic dance. I’ve watched the movie three times…so far. The character is damaged, sad…homicidal, the kind of dude that fascinates, but only from a distance…only in fiction. The acting is brilliant. But have you taken a good look at the scenery? Those buildings? The grafitti on the walls? The sky? Even the pavement?
All of it has inspired me. And over the past week, I’ve been painting small flashes of what I’ve observed…and felt…after viewing the show.
The pieces are all abstract, on pieces of 9 x 12 inch paper; ambigious like the film.
Take a look…
During the pandemic, I’ve had a lot of time to work on both fiction and painting. The arts blend together. And I often see or feel scenes and characters when I work.
Back in January, before Covid-19 took over all of our lives, I visited my great-grandfather’s house–actually my cousin Ann Marie’s house right now. It’s a place where I grew up, surrounded by cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents…and even great-grandparents for a while.
There’s a river below the property, an abandoned place, visually stunning. That waterway, along with the old house, inspired a novel–one still in progress. In addition, a novella came to life–a thing that I thought I’d finished, but each time I do a “final edit”, I add to it. Then there’s the prose poems, written in an oddball sort of way. There’s five of them now.
Anyway, some “visual notes” (relating to my writing in progress) are here. The paintings and drawings express the past; partly the wonder of growing up–some dark years later on, too. And these are things, real and imagined–always there. Thing is that you get past childhood and beyond– teens–early twenties. You love and cry (sometimes)…and then you move on. The loves, the laughter, the heartbreak…it all follows you…and your imagination makes it wilder, darker, scarier…and you write…and maybe you paint, get lost in music, dance…you live.
Why do I paint ravens and other blackbirds?
Ravens symbolize wisdom, secrets, freedom, prohecy, death and the magical ways of the universe. All those aspects have consistently appeared within my fiction and poetry over the years.
A long time ago, I visited a tropical bird shop in New York City. There were parrots and other colorful birds there. A poet friend and I wandered from the well-lit area of that store, and into a backroom. There was a raven there–beautiful, feathers shiny black, eyes filled with wisdom. A curious creature that grabbed onto a pair of glasses, that I carried, as I walked by its cage. We got into a playful tug of war over those spectacles.
I remember my feathered friend fondly as I paint these days…that being hidden away, appearing to artists and poets because they’ve wandered off the beaten path. Because they journeyed into a secretive place where the raven waits.
I got to thinking that maybe we’re all in some sort of tug of war with our secrets, our sense of freedom. And don’t most of us deny magic as we strive to make our way in this material world? Don’t most people deny mortality until old age?
Deep thoughts and speculation are a trademark of the creative mind. Maybe those thoughts are silly to the mainstream. No matter…I paint ravens…at least for now…
Sandy DeLuca, May 12, 2020
Thinking of how the sea looks after dark and all the creatures that come out at night.
This is has been a difficult time for most of us. Because of the coronavirus, not leaving my home except for occasional supply runs, has become normal. Time spent in solitude has granted me more time to create. I’ve recently rewritten and expanded my 2011 novella, INTO THE RED. (originally released from Damnation Press). At the time of this post, it is at Crossroad Press awaiting final edits and proofs.
In addition, I am working on a novel inspired by my great grandfather’s house and the surrounding area. AND I’ve decided to expand several short stories–written over a decade ago–into novellas.
Those of you who know my process are familiar with the sketches and paintings that accompany my written work.
I’m posting some of my pandemic paintings here.
As always, thanks for checking out my work.