Saturday, May 29, 2010

Joining the Fastback and Convertible, New Notchback Mustang Offers Hybrid Model

Mustang EcoBoost4 Hybrid notchback coupe for 2011. In my world anyway. Click image to see larger.

I just made a minor change to the C pillar, it's a bit more angular and symmetrical now, more old-school Ford notchback. I think I like this one better.

C H O P — Yes, I create a lot of Mustang notchback coupes, lol. I can't help it. Every time I see a new photo of Mustang fastback, I know it would look better as a classic notchback. This photo was a "regular" Shelby GT500, but I used most of its specific body parts for this EcoBoost4 Hybrid notchback. This would be the first notchback and the first 4 cylinder Mustang since the Mustangs of the late '70s and early '80s. Using Ford's new high-tech EcoBoost technology, it would also use components from the award-winning Fusion/Milan/MKZ hybrid drivetrain. Total horsepower would be close to the 305 of the new V6, with nearly 400 ft/lbs of torque at full charge, and would offer gas mileage in the high 30s/low 40s, amazing for a ponycar capable of 0-60 in less than 7 seconds.

B T W : 
Original photo for comparison. Yes, I flopped it for my chop, so it would face the other side. I removed any badges that would have appeared 'backwards' and I added a hint of a steering wheel to the 'other' side to make the car read correctly. I removed the gas cap door, as it doesn't appear on the passenger side of this series of Mustang. Besides the obvious change to the roof, I lightened the wheels, added dark band of rocker panel trim tying the side lights together, and slightly changed the contours around the front airdam and front wheels. I took away the off-center Shelby snake in the grille and added a centered Mustang horse emblem, as this would no longer be the performance model in the lineup. Flowers in the background, from my garden of course, add the artandcolour into this photo, which I found in Autoblog's wallpaper/desktop galleries.

Friday, May 28, 2010


Much prettier than the name "Spiderworts" might imply, this is a perennial also known as Tradescantia. Looking much like a day lily as it grows, the flowers sprout from the joining of two leaves instead of on stalks. Each blossom only lasts a day. I've also just been given an annual variety called Purple Hearts which has a very dark purple foliage. I'll post pics when they grow and blossom. 

For more on Tradescantias on Wikipedia, click here.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Tunnel Bar, NYC East Village, 1991, 4 am

Favorite haunt, late '80s early '90s. Four in the morning, Lou Reed blaring from the Town Car's stereo cassette player and open-to-the sidewalk doors, Korean Deli's surreal exterior vegetable displays. Sketching and schmoozing, speeding and slacking, and spanking each day into life after a rough fucking night's labor. Click on image to see the scrawling and sprawling scribbles and roughed-in crayon and pastel lighting in greater detail.

B T W :
Vintage Polaroids of Lincoln Town Car mentioned above, at the dealership the day I bought it. 'Twas a great car that didn't lead the pampered life it probably was expecting... : )

Being 20, Shore Leave—Rome, 1946

This piece, St Peter's Square, 1946, is from the same series of images as below. I'll be working with these more and more in my new work.

B T W :  
Aboard ship, having fun when they could, these young sailors mug for the cameraman, my father. Remember, much of the time, war is fought by the brave and the young, the very young.


Setting: Stuttgart Army Base, Germany, play area. Time: 1958-59. Dialogue: "Faster, Faster, Higher, Higher!" Click to see the thrills up close.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Pastoral Photo of the Day

A friend of the family meeting the pet sheep and her offspring, ca 1946. Click the image to see the cuteness! I like the ancient outbuilding in the left of the background; I'd love to work with those old boards today. 

Welcome to the World

"Peaches," a very pale pink Iris with darker, almost salmon-colored fuzzy beards. This bloom is almost 6 inches from top-to-bottom, and the flowerstem is slightly more than 4 feet tall! The giant Tiger lily continues its skyward aspirations beside it, lol. Click to better see these large flowers.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


Bud of a peach-colored hybrid Iris. This stem is a bit more than 4 ft tall! The spiky plants behind the Iris are giant Tiger lilies! Those two are more than double the size of the other Tiger lilies in the garden. I wonder if they'll have more flowers than standard Tigers?
The small greenish-white buds of the Feverfew. In this photo, I have this herb nestled in between day lilies and rose campion. I have it in several other places in my gardens too. I love the long-lasting daisy-like flowers, and the smell of the leaves and stems when you pick them.
The yellow and gold bud of a bearded Iris, just about to unfurl. I love the specked bottom portion of this variety's buds. This variety also tends to have multiple flowers per stem; I've had as many as eight flowers per stem. 

G A R D E N I N G — I've mentioned before that perennial gardeners spend a lot of time waiting for flowers to appear. Anticipating the size, shape, color and variety of blooms is as fascinating to me as the actual blossoms are, lol. I walk around my gardens every day, often several times a day, and watch the buds appear and develop before they blossom. Shown here are two large Iris buds and the small clusters of greenish buds of Feverfew, which will develop into surprisingly long-lasting white daisy-like flowers. Click on all photos to enlarge.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Youngest Collector Stops By

My youngest collector, Deja, stopped by Sunday and picked up her newest piece, Pretty as a Picture. Deja also owns a commissioned piece of mine, a paint and upholstery treatment on her family's heirloom child's rocking chair, Fit for a Princess.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sunday Night Around the Radio

World War I-era Thorola Super-Heterodyne Radio, mfr'd 1916. The circular speaker is sitting on top of the closed radio; replacement vacuum tubes in their original striped boxes sit atop the open radio. Schematic inside details how to hook up to batteries and electricity for power and reception. Can you imagine the news that has been broadcast by this early twentieth century walnut-cased radio? WW1 news of the frontlines, the Roaring 20s Charlestons, Black Friday, Lindy's flight, the classic radio shows of the '30s, maybe even FDR's Fireside Chats...  Retired in silence... Click to see this almost 100-year old antique in greater detail.

U P D A T E — I found this link while searching for the first US President to use the radio for communication. Warren Harding had the first radio installed in the White House in 1923. My ancestors had a radio in their home seven years before the White House did!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Moving Mercury onto that Green Brick Road

Monterery, Luxury Hybrid 5 door
Capri, Sport Hybrid 5 door
Marquesa, Luxury Hybrid 4 door

C H O P S — Three examples of an up-to-date Mercury family sedan, all with hybrid drivetrains and high-tech connectivity systems. I'll keep working on new Mercurys and Lincolns until Ford does as well.

The Color Purple

Shades of purple reign right now Chez Casey. Flox, Columbine, and Siberian Iris all contribute a royal appearance to my full-sun perennial garden this week. Click images to see in greater detail.

Happy Eighty-Ninth

Today would have been my dad's 89th birthday. He died twenty-five years ago, so it's hard for me to imagine him at 89. This photo is dated 1945 and shows him in the engine room aboard his Navy destroyer, the USS Goodrich. Click on the image for his Errol Flynn-like handsomeness, lol.

Friday, May 21, 2010

It's a Brand New Day. Old-School Town Car Replacement Keeps Name, Length, Position

Though slated to be dropped instead of updated, I'd love to see the Lincoln Town Car granted a brand new platform and new lease on life. I've used cues from the new MKT to create this decidedly upscale rear-wheel drive American luxury car. C'mon Ford, the Town Car is an American icon! Click to see all of its innate goodness!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Fewer Doors, Part 2 Today. Regal GS coupe

The new German-built Buick Regal GS could be made into an attractive coupe with very few new pieces. I'd love to see a more aggressive coupe with its own styling and tighter platform, and might try my hand at one, but this one utilizes as many of the original pieces as possible for economy of production. Click to see larger.

C H O P — At first I didn't care for the 'swoosh' on the front door of the new Opel/Buick sport sedans, seemingly random as it was, but it has really grown on me the more I look at it. It evokes the fender graphic of the classic period, without being retro in any way. With front overhang length seemingly stuck at huge meeting all of today's pedestrian safety regulations and bumper standards, that indented panel creates the illusion of a longer wheelbase. It visually pushes the front wheels forward by moving one's eye backwards into the door, much as the flowing fenders of the 1930s did. It's a deft touch, worthy of Harley Earl and Bill Mitchell—which current GM VP of design Ed Welburn proves fully capable of producing with each new car introduced under his aegis. Who knows what we have in store for us with Ed Welburn's leadership and design staff? The best just might be still to come. Welburn's the real fucking deal, excuse my French, lol!

There's Got to be a Morning After . . .

The morning after the Hurricane of '38 in Stony Creek, Connecticut. The storm hit late afternoon, and raged for hours into the evening of September 21st, a Wednesday to be exact. You can almost smell the humidity steaming up from the wet landscape as the bright morning sun streams down from the east. The people out surveying the damage, walking their dog, just look so real to me—they almost start moving the longer you stare at it, the people on the right moving towards the camera, the guy in the middle walking away. . . Click to see larger.

Cherokee 2 door Offers Easier Access, Luxury

Two door SUVs/Crossovers provide larger doors. Combined with the traditional step-in height these longer doors offer unparalleled access to the front seats. Full sized two door utility vehicles have been missing from their respective lineups for generations now. Click to see a full 1000 pixels wide.

C H O P — This chop based on the as-yet-unreleased 2011 Grand Cherokee, shows a 2 door version I've simply named the Cherokee. I've included a restyled carbon fiber rear hatch, partly to offset the added weight of the opulent leather interior with full state-of-the-art connectivity. While supremely capable off-road, as all Trail-rated Jeeps, this new model would offer the most luxurious and electronic interior ever offered on a Jeep product.

This chop is for my friend Barry in Michigan. He's a big man, loves his big collection of cars, and has often complained about the smaller doors of most four door SUVs. I've added some of his 'toys' in the background, a '67 Lincoln Continental limousine, and his GM motorhome/trailer combo. While Jeeps aren't his style, I think he'd love the interior I have in mind for it. This could suffice for a summer home's garage! 

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Chopping Vintage Ads-The 4-door Sedan Coupe Fifty Years Ahead of its Time

I enjoy reworking older cars as much as I do creating new cars. There is something about trying to get into the heads of those fantastic designers, in this case, Raymond Loewy, and creating something new. As gorgeous as this generation of Studebaker's coupe was, the sedan was shorter, taller and frumpier from every angle. In these two renderings, I've based the sedan on the longer, lower coupe body, and I think it's all the better for it!

C H O P — I like photo-editing, or chopping, vintage cars as much as I enjoy creating future cars. These two new examples show what could have been one of the first 'four door coupes' on the market, a mythical 1954 Studebaker Sedan Coupe. I've illustrated both pillared and pillarless styles, the Starlight and Starliner respectively. I made the Commander Starlight an ohv V8 model, and the Champion Starliner a flathead 6 cylinder. 

Besides basing my new sedan's body on the coupe, as opposed to the shorter, taller chassis Studebaker actually used for its sedans, I've rearranged, and added, some trim, including the chrome rocker panel spear. I used the coupe's 5 place interior, instead of the sedan's 6 seats, and I've made the door panels a bit 'ritzier' as well. I changed all the relevant 'small type' in the captions to suit my new bodystyle. I also added the chromed rocker panel spears and detail trim, with the 6 cylinder version different than the V8's side trim.

U p d  a t e :  I shortened the roof of the red Starliner hardtop coupe sedan. It had a bit of a dachshund look to it before. This corresponds with the Coupe a bit more accurately. Thursday 5pm

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


Or was I botted? Earlier tonight, apparently, my mac and my Yahoo Contact List was grabbed, and a mass emailing was sent out using my addy. I think it was a link for Viagra, lol. It was NOT from me! I deleted my contacts, changed my password and contacted Yahoo. Never had this happen to me in just about 20 years of Yahoo email! And now I'm pissed because it just hit me that I deleted all my contacts!!! This is going to be a beeyotch.

Your Grandfather's Galaxie—and Starliner Coupe

These two chops were done in 2006-07, base photo was the current Crown Victoria sedan. The pale gold sedan is a revived Galaxie, the full-sized rear wheel drive replacement for the CV. Shown in silver gray, the new Starliner pillarless coupe bodystyle, a first for Ford in several generations, takes its cues from the now-classic '60 and '61 bubbletop coupes. Details include the 3 starburst trim pieces on the thin C pillars. The split taillamps of the Starliner Coupe are especially evocative of the '60 Fords, while the Galaxie Sedan's full-round rear lights are more in line with what Ford fielded for 1961.
       These chops are fairly crude, now that I look back at them, lol. Well, I always say that each fake car is a very real practice session for Photoshop, much like practicing the piano keeps your fingers, and mind, nimble in its own way. Click to see their relative crudeness in more detail!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Buds Appear on Solomon Seals, lol!

The recently discovered old-stock Solomon Seals are progressing nicely! The buds are beginning to emerge from each leaf along the stem, fascinating to watch develop. Twelve stems of this perennial plant emerged this spring in the newly-cleared, and bulldozed, back yard. Who knows how long they were just surviving, sight-unseen, under the deep thicket of wild rose bushes, bamboo and sumac that comprised the back yard? It was overgrown like that for at least the last fifty years.

Hoohoo and Me

From Polaroid print, Me and Hoohoo, 1967. Click to see its period details!

Seen Around the House

The Alps and a Cactus
Six Pearl Buttons
Lindsey Lohan, the Dionne Quintuplets, and my pink flamingos

D I G I T A L   P H O T O G R A P H Y — Just a few scenes from around the house this afternoon. The top image shows an oil painting of the German Alps. My parents bought about a dozen of them in various sizes during the fifties while they lived in Stuttgart. The plant in front of it is now my oldest Christmas cactus, approaching it's 92nd birthday. The middle photo shows a part of one of my first pieces, Six Pearl Buttons, and some vintage posters and a Japanese farming hat. The bottom image shows a variety of my collectibles, including a three-dimensional paper "Herbie the Love Bug" with Lindsey Lohan driving it, lol, a Dionne Quintuplet pocketbook and ID card, and two original pink flamingos from the sixties. Click all images to see larger.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Seen in Town

Seeing a Jaguar E-Type is a rare event these days, especially an early version in perfect condition. This gorgeous specimen was seen in my town yesterday; it stopped me in my tracks—well on my wheels—I was riding my bike as usual. Glass-covered headlights signaled this convertible as a pre-1968 model—I'm going to guess that it's a '66 or '67. The anthracite exterior coordinated perfectly with the dark russet/henna interior, a lovely not-quite-red leather. Parked behind our excellent private bookstore, R.J. Julia, this E-Type—also known as the XK-E—was sporting-out-of-state license tags. Coincidentally, Kathy Lee Gifford was about to give a talk at the bookstore. Maybe this was her car, lol? Click each photo to see this rarity in much greater detail.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

The Photographer Photographed

The woman behind the lens of many of the vintage photographs I use in my work, my grandmother, 1922.

C O L L E C T I O N — Meet my grandmother, the woman behind the lens of many of my pieces of art. This photograph of her was taken at the Indian Point House Hotel in Stony Creek, in the early 1920s, the setting of several of the portraits she shot. I find it interesting that I have this image of HER, taken with someone else's camera, but I have yet to discover the similar photograph that my grandmother was shooting at the time. I have no idea who took this photo, but I continue to search for clues. I also have only found this print, whereas I have my grandmother's negatives. As much as I enjoy working on art, I also am endlessly fascinated with the stories behind these images. As they were taken so many years ago, and none of the subjects (or my grandmother) are alive, I'm not sure I'll ever really know the full truth. I plan on writing about all that I've uncovered at some point though.