Another Ying Yang

studioArt Musings


As a means of contrast with the sublime, the grotesque is, in our view, the richest source that nature can offer.

This is a re-creation of an idea that never gelled. The original was drawn at a time I had to travel unexpectedly with a deadline to meet and not enough images to fill it.

The original featured a sea and land turtle looking at one another longingly. Most of my artwork centers around improbable contrasts, so one featuring popularly depicted land and sea animals seemed promising. Since distraction and worry make terrible muses, the results were too generic to appeal to any market. The print took forever to sell and not many people were drawn to it, so the artwork was retired quietly.

Enter a plea from the Florida Wildlife Hospital and Sanctuary: they asked people to stop rescuing sea turtles. As it turns out, the “sea turtles” were actually gopher tortoises. Albeit their forelimbs do have a fin-like appearances, these creatures lack the ability to swim. Given these tortoises look like they can put up quite a fight, I wonder how in the world anyone managed to catch one. And when they did, didn’t they notice the claws at the end of the “fins” or the shape of the back legs?

This is a tentative sketch executed with failing Wacom pen (drops from three or four feet onto hard surfaces do not agree with it’s careful engineering). I haven’t decided whether to draw this one digitally like it’s predecessor or paint it.