MOTHBALL was inspired by a photograph I saw at a gallery show in Roundrock, Texas. My apologies for not citing the photographer’s name for this piece (I simply didn’t note his name at the time), but I did include the original photo for reference and if I can figure out his name I will update accordingly. Regardless, what grabbed my attention from the photo was that it was from the perspective of the moth, like a pilot landing a plane.
My goal with MOTHBALL initially was to simply emulate the photo as a painting, but about halfway through I got it in my head to steer towards the whimsical, which I did by taking the moth’s perspective via a few beers and a dram of whiskey. To achieve this goal, I incorporated 2 key design decisions. First, an assumption that the vision of a moth is very different from ours. Granted, I have no idea how a moth sees the world, but it’s safe to assume the focus is the flower and everything else is Mothvision noise… and probably green. Secondly, and most importantly, I wanted to get in the head of the moth and emulate how she saw the flower – this is where I shifted from beers to whiskey. What I came up with was something that screamed “YUMMY DELICIOUSNESS!”, essentially a rich, vibrant, active flower with pollen roiling on top like the surface of the sun.
The time lapse video below starts at the point I decided to go full Mothvision. If you pay close attention you can see the changes and deletions made along the way to make things work better.
Overall I’m very happy with MOTHBALL, although I recognize it’s a niche audience who might be drawn to such a concept. Hopefully the explanation provided here can at least drive some appreciation for the intention of the art.
Thanks for reading!
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Way to go, Bern! Nice next step along the whimsical path from your “wish” painting. Very creative. And on YouTube?!