Justin Devine and Megan Lynn Kott are a married couple who happen to be two of my favorite artists. Last night was the opening of their group show Moonage Daydream, a tribute to David Bowie. If you didn’t go you missed out, but the show is going to be up for a little while at San Francisco’s Public Works.
I can’t understand why these two aren’t super famous. The culture has shifted hard to pop-geekery obsession and their subjects and styles celebrate all that is great in nerdy fandoms. Justin’s Twin Peaks/Muppets mashup is absolutely glorious.
I own three paintings by Megan from a Dune themed art show and they’re among my favorite things I own. She seems to be most well known for her cat illustrations. I’m no fan of our feline overlords, but I do really like Megan’s cat watercolors. They’re well done and often wry. There’s something queerly satisfying about hand-making the sort of thing you usually see as a meme on the internet.
This alligator painting below is everything I like about Megan’s art. It’s just obscure enough to weed out the muggles, but funny and accessible to the right people. Her color palette is very sweet and balanced with technical precision. Just look at how good the gator’s feet are.
There are pieces of Megan and Justin’s that show how much they seem to influence each other, while others are wildly divergent. Justin’s paintings look very different than his illustrations to my eye. There’s usually some sort of creepy twist that lets you know the dude who made the thing is a wonderful oddball. Check out this creep-tastic detail from the painting above.
Seriously, how can you not appreciate the way Justin captures the soulless, yet strangely cuddly, evil of the spider’s eyes?
Another artist friend, Lindsay McMinn, has a piece in the show. Her art is much more stylized and loose. There’s a bit of a Ralph Steadman quality to her scribbly lines that is positively maniacal. One day she will relent and work on my comic book version of the Goonies done with raccoons instead of humans: The Raccoonies.
I feel pretty lucky to know these people. They’re all really talented and hardworking. Getting to know them and see how they work has been important for me. I like art quite a bit, but I’ve never been any good at it. I tried to “Draw the Marvel Way” for years and I just never got any better. I always relate to that scene in The Royal Tenenbaums where it’s explained that Richie Tenenbaum never advanced as a painter.
My natural talent has always been with story telling (not necessarily writing), so I went with that. Writing is a bit lonely, though. Art is cool because you can have a big party where your friends all come out and see what you’ve done and get wasted. Literary events are never as good.
I’m not sure where I’m going with all this blog writing, but my hope is dedication to a consistent practice will improve my skill and gain some sort of audience. It’s fun to share your outlook and perspective and the best way to do it is by doing it everyday.