Scorch

Ok, so I want to tell you a story…

I don’t want to give to much away before the night but seeing as I now have permission, I want to share.

So back in late 1993, back when I had to walk half an hour to the Beenleigh train station, sit on the train for an hour, go to the big scary record store called Rocking Horse and buy my one cassette that I’d spent weeks saving for, off the intimidating store clerks… I one day found this zine (I think you could call it that, it’s actually pretty fancy for a zine):

Scorch Cover

Anyway, I remember, reading the damn thing front to back and then back to front again and it changed my life in the same way hearing your first punk record changes your life. I read an article on Vivisection (I had never heard of the practice before) and go so head up I went and dumped all the meat products out of my fridge/freezer, into the bin (17 years later I still haven’t though about eating meat). I read about bands I’d never heard of before, bands like Bolt Thrower, Dreamkillers, Babes In Toyland, Acid World, D.O.A., No Means No and more. I saw ads for things called Livid and Market day and a few weeks later went to my first festivals. I first heard about a station called ZZZ etc etc… you get the idea.

So I got this crazy idea in my head to try to make, for my final project in grade 12 art class a clay sculpture of the image on the front cover of the zine. As you can see it’s a pretty out there human face, all chopped up and such. So some weeks later I had gotten to the point where this clay sculpture was not working (mainly due to gravity, “damn you” *shakes fist*). The whole thing fell apart, my art teacher, failed me, told me to stop trying art and go do something else with my time. I did…

But, I felt resentment in the back of my mind that I’d been told not to try and for some reason, it was that project that I attached that resentment to. So now let’s fast forward 17 years…

I decided about two months ago that with my now meager skills in woodblock carving, I wondered if I could have a second attempt at the Scorch image. I was too nervous to ask the artist who first illustrated the cover image if he would let me try a woodblock cause even if he said no, I knew I would have to attempt it regardless. I owed it to the kid who failed art class to prove it to his teacher that he could re-make this mangled face into something cool (even though i always thought it looked awesome from the start).

So blah blah blah, this story’s getting long. It took me about five weeks to carve out the woodblock and it’s the biggest block I’ve attempted yet. The zine image was 22cm high while the woodblock I’ve made is 68cm high. I made one or two adjustments to the image cause I know my limitations and I really wanted it to work but I still feel as though I have kept the essence of the image and put all the important factors into my block. Yesterday I sheepishly asked the artist if I could put the woodblock into my art show as a collaborative piece. He said “sure, but it’s not the best thing I’ve drawn”.

I’m stoked that I get to show people. I really feel like I accomplished something with this one.

Scorch 2
my hands in it so you get some idea of scale.

Scorch 1

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    • john mercer
    • July 5th, 2009

    dude!!!! thats awesome. is paul the artist?

      • alexandeverything
      • July 5th, 2009

      Yeah, it’s Paul’s

    • john mercer
    • July 6th, 2009

    it looks almost like a dreamkillers cover

    • Amber Kennedy
    • July 20th, 2009

    This artwork reminds me of what all the ads from years ago that Paul C was doing for gigs etc. I always thought his art was pretty amazing so I probably even have some scorches myself still at home… I know I def kept a few of the crazy ads I liked. This is a great story Alex, and a common one in that so many people are discouraged when they are young and give up on things that they love. But how wonderful that you revisited that challenge and done an amazing job with it. Fantastic! Amber x

  1. August 18th, 2013

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