Wednesday, October 26, 2011

texaco garage crew

Here's a new t-shirt design featuring a watercolor I did in 2008. It was based on an old photograph that a Beacon local had dug up for me after seeing another of my paintings, one that had been inspired by an old photo of a Main St gas station I'd found at the Beacon Historical Society. The faded black-and-white he presented me with portrayed this group of workmen posed in front of a Texaco truck. There used to be a Texaco research center in nearby Glenham.. and that's all I know about the image. It is one of my rare paintings with people in it. Naturally I liked the truck but I was also drawn to the men's expressions, their stances and their clothes.
I exhibited and sold the painting in a show that spring. I had a good-quality scan, and made one or two prints, but it seemed to have a rather specific appeal. Recently I was enthusiastically advised that it could be a strong image for my second t-shirt, the first being my Beacon dummy light shirt from a couple years ago. That icon had its own local and historical appeal and turned out to be a successful venture. I am not very politically-minded in my work, but I agreed that this image of blue-collar men and who/what they may represent- even though I don't know their story- is a subtle and affecting visual statement... at any rate, that is the idea. So I will start with an initial run, and see. The sample is sepia ink on an American-made ecru t-shirt.

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