Seafood Spaghetti Sunday
“Seafood Spaghetti Sunday ” (digital, 2013. @ 30″ x 40″ at 300 dpi)
“It looks like something a nut-job with indigestion painted in his garage after dropping acid and channeling the ghost of  Van Gogh (drunk on absinthe), or some shit…” 

What the hey is “Seafood Spaghetti Sunday” all about? First, it looks like a painting, but it’s not. Not in the traditional sense, because no paint has been harmed in the making of this image. It was rendered digitally, but each stroke was drawn individually with a drawing tablet, usually over and over again. It’s not a trick, a gimmick, or a filter. It’s a rather convoluted process I developed on my own to imitate the thick impasto paint of artists like Van Gogh. Check out the detail below, at approximate print size.

Head section at approximate print size, showing digital “brush work”

You probably wanna’ take a gander at the spaghetti.

spaghetti at approximate print size [300 dpi].
…and the bottom of the glass is particularly Van Goghian.

bottom of glass of milk.

I work zoomed in closer than print size, and tried to ensure that it looked good even at actual pixels. Below are a few close-ups at screen resolution.





Vincent isn’t the only influence. It started out as an experimental tribute to Francis Bacon (more about that later), and still is to a degree, even if it was branded with other influences and my own unique sensibility. There’s some Picasso in there. It smacks of the Simpsons (ex., Barney Gumble beer-burping).  It’s reminiscent of The Fly. And it brings me back to mind those old trading cards by Ed “Big Daddy” Roth, with monsters driving hot rods.

The influence of Picasso (I didn’t happen to look at ANY Picasso while working on it) – as in the anatomical distortions and suggestions – is fairly apparent in the images below.

Picasso. “Man with a Lollipop” (which also shows the influence of Van Gogh), “An Artist,” & “Portrait of Dora Maar”

The brushwork is conspicuously indebted to that of Van Gogh.

Vincent Van Gogh. “Young Peasant Woman with Straw Hat Sitting in the Wheat,” “Bank of the Oise at Auvers,” & “Portrait of Patience Escalier”

The kind of brushwork that Vincent developed – and which has had a significant impact on my artwork – is nicely reproduced here in this detail:

The rich, buttery oil paint of Van Gogh
The rich, buttery oil paint of Van Gogh in his “Portrait of Patience Escalier”

[Yeah, I can’t stop looking at the painting above. Trying to approximate this style digitally just makes me dig the original source more.]

However much Picasso and Van Gogh’s influence crept into my piece, the artist I set out to do a work in-the-manner-of was Francis Bacon. Can you see some of the overlap in the following images?

Francis Bacon: “Portrait of Frank Auerbach” (1964), “Self Portrait Seated” (1970), and ‘Man and Child’ (1963)

The similarities include the flat plane of color in the background, the swirling of paint over the visage, and the suggestive rather than literal depiction of limbs and appendages.

Bacon, in turn, was heavily influenced by Van Gogh (and Picasso, for that matter), and made several tribute paintings to him, which are among my favorite of his paintings.

4 Tributes to Van Gogh by Francis Bacon
4  Tributes to Van Gogh by Francis Bacon.

I even made a video to help people appreciate my piece. Check it out. It’s cool. And I uploaded it in high resolution so you can select HIGH DEFINITION and full screen mode on your player to see it in maximal beauty! Hang in for the close-ups. Also the music I chose is very appropriate and cool.

13 replies on “Recipe for a “Seafood Spaghetti Sunday”

  1. Hi – Good to see your work. Van Gogh was the first artist to make an impression on me too. I’m in my late sixties now so that was when I was a teenager!


  2. You should always include closeups of your work so everyone can appreciate the hard work you put into every piece! The closeup of the cup is my favorite. Cheers 🙂


      1. Wow! I didn’t think you’d respond haha. What would you like to know? Would you be able to email me?


      2. If it’s just for using it online, and the resolution is high enough, you can just go ahead and take it. You have my permission, since you asked nicely. If it’s actually going to get printed, and you need a higher resolution image, we can figure that out as well. Let me know more about what you need and what your project is.


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