Memory of a Cosmic Heart

Sketch for the album cover.

What is “Memory of a Cosmic Heart?”

MCH represents a ten year effort to expand the definition of New Age music with an album that harkens back to the roots of the original movement and expanding its potential. Myself, Rob Jacobs and a team of incredibly gifted song writers, musicians, and opera class vocalists have created a classical, operatic, electronic musical fusion that is designed to calm the mind and open peace in your heart, without sounding like elevator music. It also gets you dancing too.⠀

heart2Sketch for the album cover.

The music is close to being finished and the grand plan for this multi-media project. I am launching a crowd funding campaign on Earth Day, April 22. This is an auspicious day as  the story of the music reflects themes of interstellar and planetary influence.

Sketch for the album cover.

There will be an illustrated book to accompany the music which will be in Vinyl, CD and digital download formats. Stay tuned for more details.

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Sketch for the album cover.

 

 

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Music of the Spheres

Concept Setches for the record cover…

I have music in my blood and it likes to pump to the surface through melodies in my head.

Michelle Barnes and I created The Visions of Vespertina album years ago and this new project has been slowly percolating out of me ever since.  I started a conversation with my friend Rob Jacobs who is a meditator like myself, an artist and kirtan player about collaborating. Together we wrote a series of songs. From the beginning, these songs reflected our desire to pierce the veils of reality and touch the dimension of spirit.

Bill Brendle (plays for Sergio Mendez) helped us take the music further. As the project evolved, James Raymond (Crosby, Stills and Nash) came on board as a Producer. The songs transformed into Gold.

As we refined the instrumentation with James in the studio, the muses revealed their power inside these compositions. We could hear the  music of the spheres, as the score morphed into classical, and operatic overtones.

Truth is, our record has been years in the making. When James went on tour with Crosby, Stills & Nash it was put on hold.

Then Rob suffered a stroke. I felt an urgency to finish this project, when the universe pushed open a door expanding the concept further…

Jose Montana is a DJ, and Producer. He loved our songs. remixed compositions into Ambient, Dance Electronica, transforming them again! Our album evolved into a classical, operatic, electronica fusion.

Then more magic happened… additional stellar talent joined the project. Next post I will divulge the awesome vocalists (opera singers, Grammy nominated), and award winning musicians who are gracing the record, as well as the title of this project.

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Model Pageantry Overview

I have been honored and blessed to create art with loving, talented people in the service of the art spirit. I thank all of the beautiful souls who have helped me bring more beauty and grace to our world. Onward and upward!

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Model Pageantry VIII

Model- Ashley Hackett for, “Chakra Goddess” (detail).

From the moment I met her it was clear Ashley would make a great model. Conceptually, I wanted to explore some eastern indian sculptural qualities I felt she would be perfect for. “Chakra Goddess” manifested from this collaboration. There is a strength and serenity that emerges from this image. It is one of my most popular prints with women.

Model- Ashley Hackett for, “Divine Repose II”

“Divine Repose” was also produced from this photoshoot. I created some variations of this image which was inspired by the model’s relaxed and elegant pose. The violet, pink color washing over the the interior of this sacred space created a nice contrast and reflected Ashley’s fun and beautiful art spirit.

Reference shot for, “Chakra Goddess.” We explored different poses for this image and some of them were beautiful unto themselves.

Model- Melissa Schwarz, reference for, “Living Stone.”

Melissa Schwarz is a new addition to my family of models. Melissa is a very talented actress and enjoys playing different roles in theater, but also in front of the camera. She has transformed herself into the seductress, the classical muse, a forest faerie, and the lover wondering about the future.

The sunlight was just magical on her with this picture.

The seductress in cyanotype form.

A splash of fantasy.

Reference for a series on the windows of love.

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Model Pageantry VII

Model- Isabelle Howell for Roxana Illuminated Perfume.

I designed a photoshoot around Isabelle Howell and Kellie Bryant (both Waldorf Highland Hall graduates) for Mona Wells plant dyed fashions, as well as Roxana Illuminated Perfume. These two young women melded perfectly with a feel of wholesome elegance.

Mona Lewis exploring handwork, plant dye, education and art that feeds the soul.

Isabelle Howell as a classical nature nymph. I was attempting to capture a Pictorialist quality to this series of photos.


Kellie Bryant in a turn of the century Pictorialist image.

There is almost tintype quality to some of these photos. I love the timeless essence that these images evoke.

Nature and romanticism.

The above image was taken for Sofia Bernardez, another Highland Hall high school student and talented fashion designer who was looking for a scholarship to El Istituto Europeo di Design in Barcelona. The model was her friend who’s name escapes me.

Photoshoot for Mala Apothecary. Model- Kamilla Peters. In this instance the focus was on the beautiful, flawless skin to reflect the product line of Mala Apothecary. However, Kamilla’s clear blue eyes pull you back again and again.

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Model Pageantry VI

Blue Savanah, Model Savanah Paige Kerwin, for Roxana Illuminated Perfume

I had one photoshoot with Savanah but the amount of inspiration I have been able to glean from that one session has been amazing. She was a receptionist at my local gym and I asked her if she would be interested in posing for Roxana Illuminated Perfume. She had no modeling experience but it was obvious within a few moments of taking pictures she was a natural.

Most of these are reference shots for Roxana Illuminated Perfume, however I explored different Photoshop and cyanotype processes for some of my personal pieces of art.

Cyanotype influence with drawing elements intertwined.

This photoshoot was held at the Agoura Antique Market. Backgrounds were ready made in some instances or we moved different objects around to create interesting compositions.

Savanah relaxes in the sunset through the magic of Photoshop.

More Cyanotype influence with drawing elements intertwined.

This gives you an example of how Savanah was used in a promotion for, “Impromptu” botanical perfume. See the Lookbook here.

Reference for, “Impromptu.”

Final art for, “Impromptu.”

Savanah is like an exotic landscape, full of intrigue and awe inspiring beauty. I am grateful we had the opportunity to produce some wonderful imagery together,

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Model Pageantry V

v5Queen I,  Model- Sophie Fletcher

This post continues my celebration of people that have modeled for me throughout my art career. Click on the images to see them larger.

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Sophie Fletcher has a sweet natural demeanor which translates into exotic realism. Elegant and beautiful.

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soficlock

queensmart

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sofiecrown

 

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Model Pageantry IV

Michaelmas Mastery– Showcased in Spectrum 24, The Best of Contemporary Fantastic Art. Model- Stevie Morley

This post continues my celebration of people that have modeled for me throughout my art career. Click on the images to see them larger.

Raw reference shot for Michaelmas Mastery.

Stevie Morley is a serious evolutionary biologist, make up artist and costume maker. She is known also as Dirt Faery Morley because of the costumes she designs that can reflect a dark almost troll like nature. When I photograph her as a model for my art projects or for Roxana Illuminated Perfume assignments she brings an elegance to the lens.

Fleurish for Roxana Illuminated Perfume.

Stevie has the spirit of an actress and the sophistication of a Goddess.

There is a beautiful archival print of this image.

Venus, for the Roxana Illuminated Perfume event, Love Yourself

The inspiration for Venus was 1800’s Parisian postcards.


Raw reference shot for Venus
Floral Bliss
Raw reference for Floral Bliss photoshoot
Melifera, for Roxana Illuminated Perfume

The painter William-Adolphe Bouguereau would have loved her as his model too.

 

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Model Pageantry III

Noir, Model- Jessica Lough

This post continues my celebration of people that have modeled for me throughout my art career. Click on the images to see them larger.

“Nefertiti’s Dream” is inspired by the Noir art. Nefertiti means “the beautiful one has come.” Divine consciousness blossoms. 35″x48” inks, acrylic, oil, metallic paint, varnish, canvas on wood.

Jessica Lough is a model who brings a strength to all of her characters. She can be dark and gothic or sensitive and sensual. Being a belly dance and performer she knows how to bring drama and elegance to any concept that needs to be communicated.

Noir Woods, for Roxana Illuminated Perfume

Working with a model is like a dance. It is both of us swirling around ideas when creating an image together. When the energy is right and we fuse our minds and talents. Then we can create a synergy. There is always a confident and playful quality with Jessica which makes our photoshoots delightful, creative collaborations.

To Bee, for Roxana Illuminated Perfume

“Goddess Muscle.” In solidarity with women’s rights and the Women’s Marches around the world. The Goddess is Rising.

Blue Queen, Archival Print

Blue Queen II

Mystic Current, Archival Print

Midsummer’s Night Dream

Photo inspiration for the Queen series

Snow Queen

Snow Queen Redux

Sometimes I create variations on a theme to see if the image wants to transform. I enjoy these explorations. I can’t go wrong with just about anything Jessica is the inspiration for.

Snow Queen Redux II

 

Sensual Dark Beauty

I know when the photoshoot is finished when I see this face. Ha! Thank you for all the inspiration Jessica!

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Model Pageantry ll

Roxana Villa.

This post continues my celebration of people that have modeled for me throughout my art career. Click on the images to see them larger.

Roxana Villa for the “Blue Mage”

When I needed reference for specific illustrations, I would ask someone to pose for me. Generally, the search would be for a person who I felt reflected the spirit of the art to be produced , but who I also had easy access to. Hence, many times family, friends, or someone who lived close by usually ended up being the one.

In the following images we see Roxana Villa (my wife), and her daughter, Eve as well as Gwen Cunningham and others who helped with many reference shots for some wonderful projects.

Blue Mage was created for the special edition of, The Art of Greg Spalenka book.

Roxana posed for the “Lotus Faeries” poster (below). Here are two sketches of her.

“Lotus Faeries” poster. Roxana is morphed throughout, and stretched into faerie mode.

Roxana as Susannah for the CU opera poster of this production. “Susannah,” is an adaptation of the biblical story of Susannah and the elders set in the 1950s in rural Tennessee.

Posing for, “I am the Sun” painting.

“I am the Sun,” 47″x54″ acrylic, oil, varnish, gold leaf, silver leaf, on canvas/gator board.


Eve Villa Neuhart, SX70 Polaroid, early 2000’s.

Eve has posed for many illustrations over the years. It is fun seeing her grow up through these photos and artworks.

You can see Eve’s influence in this poster. I made her look a little older from the earlier reference. The pictures are always a starting point for the art and generally change as the image evolves.

As Tanisa in, “The Eyes of the Unicorn” children’s book.

Tanisa slumbers while a magical visitor arrives… “The Eyes of the Unicorn” children’s book, written by Teresa Bateman, published by Holiday House.

Love this photo. This was taken as an inspiration or the Chester College poster.

The final Chester College art has a different feel over the photo reference, it is less earthy, but this is where the illustration evolved to. I see now that it would have been stronger to pull out the stops on the headdress and make it more outrageous.

Another poster for Laguna College of Art and Design. Eve was pushed into a more fantastical image here but you can still feel her presence.


Eve’s friends were also employed as we see here with Hanna Edelson for another Chester College poster, (below).

The final Chester College poster. Anthony Padilla hired me to produce these images for the school. Jeff Burne was the designer on both Chester College and the Laguna College of Art and Design posters. We have worked closely for decades on a myriad of projects with much success.


Gwen Cunningham synchronistically came on the scene when I was looking at models for Roxana Illuminated Perfume. Roxana creates pure botanical perfumes with essential oils, infusions, etc. without any synthetic chemicals. Gwen fit this elegant, wholesome quality perfectly.

Gwen inspired the image created for Roxana Illuminated Perfume’s new edition of Blossom, and then I produce a short video too.

I experimented with cyanotype photographic processes with Gwen as the focus. Expect more of this exploration from me in the near future.

Lastly, there are moments when several friends/models come together and create a synergy. This image for Roxana Illuminated Perfume, includes Eve, Gwen, Kyle and Walker.

*Stay tuned for more posts that honor the people that have modeled for me, inspired me and helped me bring more beauty into the world.

 

 

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