Thursday, September 9, 2010

MOBY-DICK, Page 370

Title: ...a continuous chain of whale-jets were up-playing and sparkling in the noon-day air.

8 inches by 7 inches
ink and marker on found paper
September 7, 2010


  1. Thank you Titus. I keep noodling around with these whale spouts, trying different techniques and media. I am still not completely happy with any of them, but something about this trio did please me.

  2. Anja, yours was one of the most astounding comments I have yet received. That is certainly not at all what I had intended. Or, at least, not what I thought I intended. But after reading your comment, looking at this image in that way, and then thinking back to this illustration for page 335 and Rudy's comment about the overwhelming maleness of the novel, I am starting to agree. Which is, in some ways, hilarious and I am in no way ashamed of the ribald nature of some of these illustrations.

    Thank you very much for this. It really brightened my morning!

  3. I have been checking in every day or so and am really loving this as a series, as a homage to one of the greatest novels ever written but also as a work of determination, focus and art. I am truly impressed and inspired. This site is now on my bookmark bar so I can visit everyday...
    I also caught the ejaculatory and phallic nature of the piece but that runs throughout Moby Dick, doesn't it? As well as man-love and other spiritual energies. Very Whitmanesque.
    Really great work. Thanks
    Kathryn in Boston

  4. Kathryn, it makes me very happy when I read that people are visiting frequently. I try to post a new illustration every single day, seven days a week, and in some ways knowing people visit regularly is a kind of accountability that keeps my nose to the grindstone.

    I would agree that there is a prominent masculine and at times homoerotic theme running through "Moby-Dick," so in retrospect I am not so surprised that this has at times surfaced in my illustrations. Each illustration I make is a very intuitive, immediate and subconscious reaction to the text. I don't spend a lot of time planning the illustration, I simply start working almost reflexively, so it's (in a strange way) heartening that some of those elements are showing now.

    The Whitman comparison is especially apt, and something I have been thinking about lately. This project was in some ways inspired by a remark from an old college friend of mine who also loved this novel. He and I were great admirers of Whitman (he actually used to have vivid dreams about him) so many of our undergrad conversations about Melville were tightly interwoven with thoughts of Whitman as well. So strange this is all coming together in this project, years later!


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