December 30, 2022

A Year of Staring At Screens


Yet another year is drawing to an end. I had better not even guess how much of it that was spent sitting like this:
It has some pretty funny details too, the cuneiform (symbolizing, what? Feeling old and worn, perhaps) and the long fingers (as I’ve done this for such a long time?) & so on.
It’s on a par with my other works for this year; I threw together a nice little movie with a selection: Enjoy. You may hear the Straussian love of banjoes in the background.


November 29, 2022

Pengruraffe


This month I drew a Penguraffe.
Outside, the last colours blew away (as shown here in ink and aqua) and everything got dressed in fifty shades of pure tristesse. (I've learned that this is actually a cherry tree, who could've guessed.)
And inside, I went into exile, fleeing into my inner cosmos, where this cute little thing could be found. A digital creation, perfect when the November light is as discouraging as it is. It's possible that I made a pencil doodle a long time ago to keep the idea, but it's a very vague memory now. Such figments resurface when they want to.

October 31, 2022

October, Elephants & Other Things.


This month has seen me doing various little things. Toot.
I can't show you everything that has been brewing.
I decided very early on not to take part in "Inktober", though. So many other things to do.

September 30, 2022

Three Eggs & a Leaf


Credit and merit where merit is due!
Justice as soon as shells burst
If you have hatched and were labeled as “One”
We must assume you were first

If it says “Second” where you first saw the light
--- So says every good referee ---
Second you are and will second remain
No matter how close you might be

We’re ever so sorry, egg number three!
For a life of less corn, full of scorn
But you must have been lazy, a terrible sport
Even before you were born.

One more poem, just for the hell of it? ---

As autumn leaves are falling
I fall away
You are green and healthy;
You are boring! -- you may stay

Gravity now calls me
Away from your healthy lot
I don't think I can stand you
Please let me plunge and rot.

August 28, 2022

A Party for Fellow-Travellers


Now it’s raining, summer has left us and some badly needed rain is soaking this wayward little spot on Earth. I’ve been mostly busy having an exhibition, leaving little headspace for new works, but now I’m on it again. This one I made yesterday. From the description on Insta (where I am @j_ceder) :
"Election time is coming to Sweden, and with it a feature that is called the “Election Hut”; every major party has to have one in every major town square, they stand there a-talking and hand out flyers and false promises from it.

This election is a particularly worrying one, with the “Sweden Democrats” on the rise --- a funny name for a party that has imported German National Socialism and dressed it up to look Swedish and democratic and decent. None of which it is. The special thing about the SD is that it’s a party for fellow travellers. Regardless if you join them for just a short ride with some illusion of personal gain or all the way to “final stop, Auschwitz!” with right arms stretched you’re welcome, as long as you follow them one station closer to power. This means that you don’t need to think that much, and up to one fifth of the voting stock and a number of von Papen-ish parties seem to fall for it. Eerie.”

---***---

Other simple stuff that I made post finissage: This door with eyes becoming my favourite butterflies, the ubiquitous Cabbage Whites.

Let’s have a look at the details! Nothing is ever simple, and the eyes-turned-butterflies of course don’t stop transitioning there.

That’s about all that I have right now, save but for small stuff like this one, it might speak for itself. Decision, decision.

July 28, 2022

A Busy July; Cloves, Apples and Monsters, Oh My!


As Larry of Larry’s Corner has been so kind to extend my exhibition, this being low season and all, I’ve had much to do as a guide among my own creations, telling tales and (hopefully) creating interest. The personal eye-to-eye contact is dead important in all relationships --- including the one between Artist and Collector --- and it is an outright shame that our digital times now kills so much of this. It kills business too. One of my favourite poets wrote:

“Now it’s not far from house to house / But far from heart to heart”

Nils Ferlin was referring to the fast but heartless highways that they were beginning to build in his days, but it goes perfectly well for information highways too. We connect so easily, but it is futile as we do not quite reach each other this way, and in business context this means No Show. As this globe gets overheated, we’ll just sit there with our excellent contacts:

“It’s burning here!”
“Really? Here too!”
“And here!”

And nobody will have the heart put the fire out. Consuming sensibly, staying on the ground and all necessary last-minute implementations become Somebody Else's Problem. How much for communication when caring is gone.

Trying to see beauty in the middle of impending doom, I painted “Cloves” --- digital, saving a failed painting on cardboard.

I also invented The Abdominable Galtan, a parody monster, on the “political maps” that you may see here and there. (Sometimes referred to as “GAL-TAN”.) Galtan, this daft beast, can only think in terms of left vs. right, mild vs. brutal force. But I couldn’t care less if we’re ruled by an elite of idiots or an equally idiosyncratic herd. I am also oblivious to whether this rule is to manipulate you or whip you into submission.

What a cutie. On the lighter side, here’s “Cherries and Windfall”. It’s made in ink and many, many layers of watercolours on a thirsty piece of cardboard.

The odd little WW-beetle is something that I’ve seen two times in my life. The first time when having a dangerously high fever in my teens. The other after staying awake for three days and night, finishing my Bachelors’ thesis. Creepy-crawley. But the other time I was but in my twenties, and we were immortal back then.

June 27, 2022

Purple Squirrels, Ellyphunts and Other Strange Things


Firstly, the Ellyphunt, made outdoors before this month got too scorching. An Ellyphunt, dearies, is what an Elephant would look like if one of the less insightful and therefore more entusiastic souls that I might encounter would describe it to me. And then I would not be paid, qua the result being Ellyphunt instead of Elephant.
As a rule of thumb, thus:
The more you do what such souls think that they want, the less they want it. O santa simplicitas.
During this month I also met with a lot of pink squirrels.
They might belong to the same bestiary. A "Pink Squirrel" --- I was very happy to chance upon this term --- is the job applicant that actually can do the six or sixty impossible things before breakfast that such wishlists often demand. It goes without saying they're part of the great Potemkin village of "meritocracy" that we have today.
Sorry: I'm not in any mood, obviously. I blame the heat. And some sales fatigue as a cherry on the top of that, trying to do business in the great Swedish Sloth Month of June (and July will be worse). But well, please have my business card. I'm here if you want me:

May 30, 2022

Here We Come Going Nuts in May


In order to handle this month, I let spin-offs turn into works in their own right, sailing away with brushes and all…
…or turn into other fruitful stuff when the original ventures grew too heavy. Or “berryful”? I have to check out whether cherries count as berries or fruit.
It’s no wonder that May is a wearisome month. For a start, it's dumb enough to begin with May 1st, the hypocritical hours that call themselves Worker’s Day.
Thus I had to draw this Chess Party.
The feeling of futility also spilled over to this little landscape, with my last little question towering in it. I used a local field, damp and misty; the warped colours might hint a cold and frosty morning.
And so a word from our sponsors... I don’t know where you are, but the place where you should be is saatchionline.com where I’m trying to sell this --- here’s

Cruel Music Box Mechanics.
Go get. We’ll see where I am, if I am, in June.
“Cut!”

April 30, 2022

Art Made to Last, Burn or Crack


May I Come In?

I have already decided for an explanation, why do I draw and next paint on such an ephemeral material? I used to do fine oils (Winsor and Newton's best, Madame!) on carefully selected canvases, much the way that Rembrandt, van Dyck and Artemisia Gentileschi did. I will explain to the dofus that they made paintings meant to last as long as civilisation, in their case a few hundred years ahead. And so do I! I waste fine ink and watercolours and some faux gold even (a few modest strokes for fun, I don't think you see it here) on a recycled piece of cardboard that'll last for many, many months --- as long as our civilisation will.
The latter won't be recycled, obviously.

As a proof of this I point to the

Local Air Biz Dragon.

Speaking of things unsustainable. I had a grass fire near me this month, and the yellow airplane in the background that lifted to pour water on it (I saw it myself) came from the same airport as some of the planes that cause it... So my dragon now bears the colours of our local airline. It transports people who in nine cases out of ten couldv'e taken the train instead.
To make all of this extra funny: Our local flight is sponsored by our taxes. It can't fly by itself any better than a kiwi bird -- or fruit -- can. So this grass fire belongs to the citizens. We own every flame of it, obviously.

Lastly, this is

A Very Well Planned Egg.
I used it for a small rant that I wrote in Swedish, published obscurely. People do not speak or listen to eggs anyhow, no matter what language they use. So now it may squeak for itself until it cracks:
"I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness."

March 30, 2022

War News Overload and Other Dispatches


War News Overload
"All wars are exciting during the first two weeks".
(Unknown.)

As I write this the war in Ukraine has carried on for a round month, and both sides are showing signs of fatigue, and so are the spectators. The length of a war is generally measured from the first shot fired 'til Armistice (or, failing that, cease-fire of varying degrees of stability) but I wish that there was a name for the Fatigue Point, when wise warriors for the umpteenth time in history come to the insight that wars (with a few smashing exceptions) can't be won really.

Battery Newt

But we're fighting a different war with such success: The war on nature. This one I made as a comment on Volvo Cars, which plans to build a fine Electric Car Battery Factory, which sounds grand until ou learn about the -- already inhabited -- wetlands where they plan to build it. You can't make up a better illustration of greenwashing or "Green Growth", no matter how you try. You can't make this up at all.

This is merely

Dr. Giraffe.
This is the kind of image that one produces when one has spent March trying to show important stuff to people. Dr. Giraffe thinks that Humanity needs stronger meds.

February 28, 2022

A Bastard with Traditions


I recently saw Sergei Eisenstein's Ivan the Terrible, a movie that Stalin very much liked, and there are some extremely jingoistic passages in it that the present Bastard in Charge just must have been inspired by. With Ivan Groznyj started the Russian expansion that has never really ceased -- nor the terror against its own people. With Putin's recent war against Ukraine in mind, this merry trio was sketched.
One sad thing about this war -- among so many others -- is how it shadows other concerns. We still have global warming going on. Title: "We're melting!"
And in Sweden we still have a state owned logging company that wreaks havoc inside our last natural forests: This little piece I call Sawrosaurus [Sågosaurus Borealis].
-- The whole work: I usually don't think horisontally so once upon a time I made this blog better fit for vertical imagery and it's a little bit late to change that now. So it goes. On the left you find money growing on trees, a lifeless monoculture of the kind that the saw monster likes. To the right there's a wasteland inspired by Paul Nash's WWI panorama "We Are Making A New World".

January 30, 2022

Ballpointy Remarks


“This is the winter of our discontent…”

I see that I last January (2021) sketched a quite harsh overview of Sweden and its repressive ways – I still stand by it. Historical reasons and guesstimates aside, this Pandemic Anti-Culture Special has been fattened with new restrictions aimed, above all, against culture.

Go to shopping malls, not theatres.
Work, don't hang around in bars.
(Joy can't be taxed.)

So this recent happy little piece (ballpoint pen/Photoshop) originated from that. I saw a lot of that no go tape (whatever it’s called in Real English) the other day.

Another recent piece in the same vein -- I found a good piece of cardboard. More ballpoint, watercolour, no electricity.

Very little electricity in this one too (but I got my ratty cell phone to tint it nicely) – a Two-Faced Whale. Nice face up, of course, the way you’re taught and pruned to do.

If I had told my “deadsoul” that posh me would one day sulk and draw with ballpoint pens, feeling no will to do sticky oils (as it seems now) ever again, former soul would not have believed it. But it owns the directness and freshness (dare I say virginity? In a good non-incel way) of a sketch. I like the baseness, the cheapness that chimes so well with base and cheap times. What next? Petty acrylics? The medium that's yucky, sticky and dries in a few improductive zeptoseconds. -- You may look up zeptoseconds while I am closing the store. Wake me up in February – if, I say, if it’s any better.

December 29, 2021

Fishy Solace and other Good Company.


December harvest: This one I call Suitable Activities for Fish.
It is "based on a true story", as they say; the sign is very real. Somewhere at a hotel or two in this world, scaled company is offered instead of the one denied by featherless bipeds.
You may discuss the Platonian definition of Man, Universal Loneliness or different ways to prepare Sushi. It will, as the sign says, only cost you three and a half € a night and will assuredly be considered vastly more moral and above all cheaper than other hired company.
Despite all this I'm not sure that the fish gets paid, though.

Here's some other good company. The people on Insta says that it must be some kind of Iris or See-weed.

It might not be attached to any Union, either. But I'm sure that it votes green.

November 28, 2021

Frost, Chilly Geometry and Other Eerie Stuff


Half an hour ambling around in the chill totally without a clue. Shooting this and that. This, and 2½ hours worth of Photoshop... et voilà. I have not been too careful, but let the crude lines be. I saw no point in refining them, but preferred to carve away into them as I went on, filling in collage, layering "paint" and distorting in general. It is now available on Saatchi&Saatchi (link).
In an entirely different vein, here's Home for the Geometrically Depressed (also available on Saatchi & Saatchi under that name, you can't miss it).
Last but not least -- obviously i still work with analogue stuff. This is PTSD or You Never Remember Their Faces -- because you never do. Mostly ink and watercolours.
That'll do for November.

November 01, 2021

Abysmal Puddle, A Premonition.


October ended on such a sour note that I never got around to posting anything. This one I called Abysmal Puddle: I was feeling low already.
Then things got worse. A lost cellphone and general mischief.
I'm just waiting for the next blow.

September 30, 2021

Watery Things & Salty Seas


This September I've been a little low at times. As long as it creates art, vale.
"Vale", if I remember my fragments of Latin right, means sort of Well, let it be: Sort of, let go of trying to explain. Or how would you explain this?
The month hasn't been entirely joyless though. There's a Leiann in California who adorns my works with colours, such as this little piece called "Paperwork", for short.
I feel blessed. :)