marshall arts


Cas has been one of my most loyal and true characters, having walked into my head way back in '69, when I first saw George Carlin on the Tonight Show. He's mellowed a lot, much as Carlin has, but he's still a hopeless smart-ass. (He acquired his name, gender notwithstanding, from his tendancy to "spin a good yarn.") If there is any possible way to turn your name into a bad joke, he'll do it, and he's far better at it than most. And he has no respect for dignity whatsoever. The instant they met in my mind, Cas took one look at my wizard Bataleur and dubbed him "Batty."

This wouldn't be so bad, except when he turns Attitude on real people. Mercifully, he doesn't tend to speak up unless we're -- I mean I'm -- alone, saving me from having to gnaw on my tongue and fabricate explanations for the tortured look on my face. Very recently, in my ongoing drive for integration, I noticed that he only does this with people who piss me off or otherwise irritate me, like the lady with the loud, shrieking voice and strong, ill-considered opinions that have nothing to do with the current topic of conversation. Fortunately nobody was watching me, so I could enjoy Cas's snide remarks about adenoidal parrots in relative safety.

It seems strange to me that it feels so strange to realize that those opinions are actually mine, and it says a lot that it's taken me so long to start to own them.

Which in a way makes all the stranger that Cas was the first case I had of a character cutting himself loose from his origins and taking on a life of his own. I was rather astonished, for example, when I discovered how terribly insecure he is, under all that razzle-dazzle and bravado. He's kept me company during a lot of rough and lonely times, and he keeps my irreverance safe against the day when I excercise the courage to express it myself.

original: 4"x5.5", Photoshop composit of two ball-point pen originals, 1990

This is another piece for which the stars just seemed to be in alignment, because it just fell beautifully out of my pens not once but twice, together in less than eleven hours. Each version had aspects I liked better than the other, and so this became my first attempt to use Adobe Photoshop--a viciously seductive piece of software--to composit an image.

--23 August 1997

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Last modified: Mon Aug 25 19:34:35 MDT 1997