The Obedient One (surreal painting)
He ventures onward,
Invading darkness with a crimson creed.
Though madness beckons with the songs of slain,
His feet are forward, and his heart is true.
So blaze a trail, and blaze it well,
With fire stronger than flames of hell.
Your sacrifices were not in vain,
But I have called you to a different plane.
My strong protection is stronger still
You couldn’t lose it and you never will.
For I am with you, though you stand alone
Below the kingdom that was your own,
Where you shall linger, and you shall stand
Until I send you the special one.
Well done, my good and faithful servant.
About The Obedient One
The Obedient One is a large surreal painting that was first displayed as part of the collection Lest More Navigate. Now it’s part of my personal collection. I use it to make sure anyone who breaks into my house immediately knows they are in a bad place, and they should leave.
I mentioned that I used charcoal in The Obedient One. What I didn’t mention is that I only used it for about 15 minutes of the entire process, which was at the very beginning.
While getting the idea down on the canvas (an idea involving principle #7 in my list of tips for getting surreal art ideas), I discovered that you can pretty effectively sketch on canvas with compressed charcoal and water. The water turns the black dust into more of a paint-like material that makes it easy to swipe in large areas that you intend to make dark later. But without the hassle of squirting out any paint onto a palette or mixing colors. Your art teacher might not recommend the approach but I find it quite effective and think you should give it a shot. ;)
The painting is on a four-foot-wide canvas. You’ll notice I maintained a lot of the dripping paint and rough brushstrokes for a very non-polished feel. I really prefer a style of painting that leaves a lot of the evidence of the process that went into the work still available to the viewer.
This is also a painting style I use in the following pieces:
… to name a few.
Here’s a shot of the charcoal and water base layer after 15 minutes of sketching.
And here’s a photo of The Obedient One hanging in a Colorado Springs coffee shop.