“From the Oil Fields of Ploesti to the Pillars of Creation”
A highlight of the ASAA 2013 regional meeting is the featured show-and tell. This year’s luncheon speaker was ASAA Artist Member Norm Siegel. He discussed his most recent work depicting the late USAF General Jacob Edward Smart,
“From the Oil Fields of Ploesti to the Pillars of Creation” (reproduced in the Fall 2012 issue of the Aero Brush).
Some key thoughts Norm left us with are:
1) You never know where the inspiration of an idea will come from. Norm’s inspiration came from a visit to the Smart Center on Andrews AFB. Norm was researching the General and found himself in the building that was named for General Smart.
2) The computer and computer graphics are wonderful tools for laying out the elements of a complex painting. The preliminary layout at right is a layered Photoshop that was the blueprint for this painting. The black and white composite comprises a variety of images downloaded from the Internet showing General Smart, B-24 bombers, the Ploesti oil field, a mission route map, the Hubble telescope, and iconic telescope imagery. This allowed him to quickly work out the compositional details of a very complex montage and resolve visual conflicts, all without placing any paint on canvas.
3) “Smoke hides all things.” In summary, Norm reminds us that the Devil might be in the Details. Sometimes the Details can be covered with smoke, but sometimes they just can’t.