Bob's ART du Jour

Hi, I'm Bob Eggleton and this is my painting and "life in general blog" but mostly paintings. Usually they're for sale. Anyway, if you like something contact me at and ENJOY!!

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Location: New England, United States

I am a Hugo award-winning fantasy/SF artist who works on both publishing projects and film concept work(such as Jimmy Neutron and most recently, The Ant Bully) but I have a passion for landscape work, small paintings and exploring the properties of paint. This blog will mostly showcase my "painting-for-the-day" as kind of a personal voyage. I'll also be inserting sketches,photos and ideas of projects I am working on, that I can, when I can, so look for those every so often(usually as paint is drying!)

Monday, October 06, 2008

Reality Quake...

Has anyone felt uneasy lately? I mean, in a way that hasn't been in awhile. I'm terribly nostalgic for "the good ol' days" whatever they were even going so far as to email and communicate with a Boston radio DJ named Dale Dorman who I grew up with, via TV in the 1970's when he hosted afternoon TV shows on Channel 56, like Lost In Space, The Flintstones, Speed Racer and such. He's a good guy and we all called him "Uncle Dale" despite not one of us kids really knew him personally. A "TV uncle" that raised so many kids. He's still in action, on Boston station WODS FM-Oldies 103 ( which plays, largely, 70's music. He has a Saturday morning slot and, frankly it's like a comfort zone-I even had a flashback listening to him, that took me to his show on the old WRKO AM-when AM stations played music in the 1970's.

Why is it those days seemed so "easy"? I'm not sure what is happening but it's affecting me very deftly these days. Not sure what is next. Every end of the year I keep thinking this is my last ever year of being successful. That, it's truly all downhill from here.Of course, I have been saying that for almost 20 years. We're coming to the end of the 2000's in one more year. This decade was really a bad one in so many ways-economics, politics, corporatism, terrorism...all of it changed...and it changed the world. Even the music more or less sucked. The 2000's I hope to never be nostalgic for. It will always be the 70's and 80's for me. They won't come again and, it saddens me I didn't remember all of what I wanted to remember from that time.

I keep thinking "Is this the year coming I should dig in and use a computer for art?" At least some of it. I still like painting. That's kind of the issue. I see work disappear more than materialize.

It's as if I am in some kind of strange place, and reality has shifted. Occasionally I am sure this happens. We get Reality Quakes, I call them. When you get up and your "intuition" tells you something is different...a, maybe. It scares the hell out of me, frankly. It's sort of like listening to Supertramp's "Logical Song" which I am sure everyone has heard.

I may be a little "off" in posts until this settles down and I hope it settles down soon. I know people who look forward to the future. I don't. It scares me because of the awful times we live in.
I'm not much good at anything besides art and even then I doubt myself on that. My fear is being obsolete, because that way, lies death.

Anyway, just some random thoughts into cyberspace....

I trudge on.


Blogger Chris Jouan said...

Hey, Bob. Tough times come and tough times go. What you do is unique and in demand as far as I can see from my limited point of view. This time of year gets to a lot of people too. I've been really nostalgic for old sci-fi and "Level 42".

I also joke that if the whole world suddenly went back to the dark ages I would be one of the first eaten. (Literally no transferable skills!) "Pens being mightier" doesn't help when you're being chased by barbarians!

10:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know how you feel, and to compound it I just had a scare-possible heart attack- I think I am too young for that!
I hope traditional illustrators can always keep at it- maybe you should venture into workshops and seminars, to train the new wave, or maybe specialize in scifi and fantasy original fine art? Perhaps a venture into landscape fine art? All I know is that the dino original I bought from you on this site means alot and if I could I would single handedly keep you financially secure. Back in art school the writing was on the walls for me so I ditched illustration and studied fine art. Now, I am in school admin. but I just did not want the computer side of art. Best of luck on your decision and hears hoping ou keep at it!

2:57 PM  
Blogger Jack said...

Amen, Bob.

While I have been "successful" in my 11 year "muggle" job working for a mega-conglomerate, I have been feeling the tug of what you and I KNOW I SHOULD BE doing with my talents. We have touched on this many times over the years and that feeling never goes away. You took the bite out of the apple right from the start; my query is whether or not it is possible to still take that bite this late in the game?

4:48 PM  
Blogger Bob Eggleton (Zillabob) said...

Chris-Level 42-yeah, great songs!! One hit wonders but really a good bit of music. I mean, I don't have any functional trade. But, trying to reframe thing day by day, maybe that's how to get by.

7:10 PM  
Blogger Bob Eggleton (Zillabob) said...

JR-wow. Yeah the health stuff is a worry always. I thought I was having a heart attack-my brother died of one at 39 out of the blue- and it was anxiety.

Yeah. I have the other options open with things. I am a lousy teacher and, I have no degree nor do I intend to get one. Fine art is always my calling but that's the issue, it can be as political and annoying as commercial art. I have followed what I thought were two good leads that wound up at dead ends in that regard. It was all big talk, biiiig talk and then...nothing. I have had the two most successful(dollar wise) months in a long time which is cool but, I'm totally fried from it. I still have more work to do and a dragon book to write. It's a feeling of being on a treadmill in fact.

7:14 PM  
Blogger Bob Eggleton (Zillabob) said...

JACK! Hey. Yeah. It's never too late for some things. But I know what you mean, it's that rut we get into and it just gets us in that way of thinking and being. The result is that age catches up with us, and we get into this routine. And then, even when I think I'm "ahead", it turns out I'm not, I'm being shoved to the sidelines. The whole Dale Dorman thing is case in point. Here's a RADIO LEGEND(the next up is the late Wolfman Jack) and people in the industry have walked all over him. I always thought that as you aged, you got respect, but sometimes it is not the case. Some prefer you out of "their" way.

7:18 PM  
Blogger Annalisa said...

Oh my gosh, I was lying awake thinking about this JUST LAST NIGHT. It's been a recurring thought for me lately, how the world really does NOT seem to be going in my direction, how so much of the developments lately have been grim, how the threats are closing in. I am 24 years old and have finally shaken off the doubts I had while in art school, determined now to be a fantasy illustrator, of book covers specifically.

Only... how long will the book publishing business even be producing paper books? I keep reading on agents' blogs (I also want to be an author) how Kindles and Sony e-readers are so great, how they're going to take over soon, how they're NOT going to take over soon and there will always be a place for the physical book... the uncertainty scares me. And the feeling of becoming redundant and unwanted is even scarier. I realized when I was a child and then re-realized it last week that the thing I love most about painting is the feel of paint-laden brush on my surface. I love the process of creating (though I do stand back and admire my work when it pleases me). I spend many hours in front of the computer browsing the Internet and that's all well and good, but I really don't relish the idea of creating artwork on here. And yet, I've heard that digital artists are more in demand than ever because the turnaround on an assignment is so much quicker. I'm sure it would be appealing for digital books to already have an image calibrated for display on a screen. Plus, do e-books really need covers at all?

So now I'm thinking, "Well, I guess I can just sell my paintings at art fairs in the summer and the rest of the year be a teacher." I enjoy teaching (I do it at an artsy-fartsy summer camp every year) but man, I've wanted to be an author and illustrator since I was FIVE. College all but killed that desire and now that I've recovered it, I have to scale back for reality?

Sorry about this long, ranting post, but I really feel I can relate to your uneasy feeling (except I HAVE no career yet). Oh, and guess what my astrological sign is.

3:39 PM  
Blogger Neutronman said...

Well, you know, I certainly relate to being nostalgic for those "days of youth" when the world was simpler and there was a sense of wonder and mystery. But you know what? That's true with EVERY generation. And you know what else? Despite all the crap and rsponsibilities of being grown-up, life is still pretty dang magical.

Unfortunately, it seems that it is human nature to remember only the "bad stuff" in the present, while remembering mostly the "good stuff" from the past. Hey, I'm guilty. And I mean you gotta admit Bob, the last 10 years have been sweet for you -- married a lovely lady, many Hugos, worked in movies, trips to Japan, great career, lots of friends, etc. Don't let the few "bad times" take away all the good!

Okay, that was my rant. I speak as much to myself as I do to you pal :)

One final thought regarding working in the arts... media will always change, but art is always about ideas. And there will always be a need for images that convey those ideas. I do not think painting and illustrating will ever go away. How can it? The medium my change, but not the demand for visual ideas and those that can provide them.

Rock-on art people!

10:43 AM  
Blogger Bob Eggleton (Zillabob) said...

Annalisa-thanks again for stopping by. No it isn't just you. However, I did just come back from Washington DC and Baltimore and saw so many cool paintings in museums that I am totally rezzed. Reality is shifted but, painting remains the same!!! AH, a Virgo...haha...

10:09 PM  
Blogger Bob Eggleton (Zillabob) said...

JOhn-that's what I try and keep in mind every single day that we do live in some cool times...or at least some cool things happen now and again!!!

10:10 PM  

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