Yep,it’s me, Monstermatt Patterson! Too good to be true, right? Sorry I haven’t been around I’ve been busy,doing something that I have tinkered with in the past, but never truly stayed on the path. What’s great is that Killer Aphrodite will let me share some of the thoughts that bubbled up, while doing said thing. Hopefully, you’re ready. Here we go…
When I was a teenage monster, I was somewhat of a Romeo. Not entirely; just somewhat. In the particular time I’m thinking of I had a few “ghoulfiends” that were constantly on my calendar. Jenny, Kathy, Sue (Kathy’s friend), Lisa, another Jenny and Stacy.
I don’t know what they were attracted to. Maybe ,it was because I was a mutation. I mean, musician! Was it because I was a good listener? A good smoocher? I’ll be damned if I know, but it was what it was. How does this tie into anything? I think it will come into focus for you. If not, go play in traffic. I mean, please hang on…
Grace, is my shortening of the phrase- “Grace under pressure”. This is also the name of an album, by the progressive rock trio, Rush. If you haven’t heard Rush is my all time favorite band. Ever. To me, this album is the pinnacle of their efforts in the 1980′s. With its reggae influenced, syncopated rhythms to a terrific balance and blend of keyboards and guitars. Topping it off is some fantastic science fiction oriented lyrics, that also look at the Cold War, the Holocaust and the loss of a close friend due to an auto accident. Not your typical pop songs, but worth so much more to an admirer of the band’s work. The icing on this cake, is the album art, which is a stunning painting by award winning graphic artist Hugh Syme, who had painted some of Rush’s earlier covers among many other top selling bands.
Looking at the layout of the cold sky, the humanoid in the foreground (an android, perhaps), the rupturing waters on the bottom half, a blood stained jawbone, plus other imagery gives you a sense of some really stormy territory. It reminds me of winter. Not because I received the album as a birthday gift (December 22. Don’t forget!). Not because everything reminds of winter, either. But seriously. It makes me think of winter. The snow drifting sideways on open fields, skies of cold hardened blues and greys. Why am I talking about this album cover and what does it all have to do with girls? Hang on,don’t be so impatient!I’m getting there.
I was in my second year in at the the junior high.We had moved from another township,after merging two families. My father had remarried.
Apparently, I left my former school with a reputation as an artist and musician.My teachers in those classes made it clear to me,that I was excelling above most others in both areas.So,I was expected to keep growing in those studies at the new school.During the first year,of the new school system ,I can say,that I did.I was the new kid,made friends,experienced smooching,but really wanted to commit to the arts.
I had a great time in the art classes that first year.I had a good relationship with my teacher and he felt I had great potential if I could focus. Well, I focused. Focused on girls!
There I was, smooching this one and that one. Oh, a time it was! One of the Jenny’s was enrolled in the art class I was in. I thought that was great, because we were sort of steady, but, I didn’t realize how distracted from the art I would become. Jenny sat next to me and as we were sort of an item,I wanted to impress her at all times. Whether it meant goofing off or whatever I did it. Foolish as it was. It’s tough to really get through to a monster in puppy love, I guess.
I went from being one of the teacher’s favorite students, to least favorite in a short time. Any attempts I made at doing the work, were poor at best, if I made any attempt at all.
What happens when you’re getting a chance to try painting,something you really want to do, but you’re too invested in the girls sitting with you? The Ghoulfriend, her friend and a girl that was pretty and tough as nails. It’s a recipe for disaster.
When “axed” what I wanted to paint, I had an ambitious goal. I wanted to try and reproduce the Grace Under Pressure album cover in watercolors. I think my teacher saw the “potential kid” coming back from the dead! I brought in my copy of Grace Under Pressure to study and paint. The winter winds bringing snow across the field outside of the art class windows. This might be another reason that album is connected to winter,in my mind.
I was ready to impress my Ghoulfriend with my painter’s vision, but I first felt the need to good off and that’s where things took a nosedive! I was drumming out rhythms with pencils on the table. I saw a fluorescent greenish bubblegum bubble, emanating from the tough girl’s face. HubbaBubba? Bubblelicious? I’m not sure, but it caught my eye and my pencil/drumstick caught it! It flipped out of her mouth and went airborne! It landed on…her…blonde…head. Oh crud. It landed in her hair! Bright greenish gum, stuck in her hair! Her face went from laughing to I’m gonna kill you, in .000001 seconds… I was a dead man. She wound up going to the nurse and getting the gum/hair wad cut from her head. I somehow escaped certain death. Somehow, my Ghoulfriend intervened. Let’s just say that the art teacher kind of wrote me off after that.
I tried painting again in the early 1990′s, with some small success. My first was a Ren & Stimpy character, Powedered Toast Man on the side of a barn. That led to a few window paintings at a local comicbook shop. That was it for the paints, until this January. A friend of mine, Mike Scirabassi, prompted me to try painting anything after he bought some of my movie monster drawings. It didn’t matter to him what the painting was. He just wanted to see what I could do. Well, so did I. I painted a version of the Terminator-half Arnold,half Exo-skeleton. Ok, not bad for the first time in 19 years?
That made a few things happen. Mike and author Monique Snyman both commissioned me to paint for them. A Frankenstein for Mike and a book cover for Monique.
Add to that a few more that I’m working on for Mike, some horror actresses and a monster. A Movie maniac for another guy and a superhero for someone else, with more parties getting interested. My dance card is filling up! The funny/weird thing is, that when Mike contacted me to do this, I was listening to Grace Under Pressure on my iPhone, during a wonderful winter day with the snow sweeping across the fields. Strange coincidence, sign or what?!
It’s been many gum/hair free winters, since that one. I’ve listened to Grace Under Pressure many times over. “Of Corpse” I have to make a poor excuse for a pun here .Blondes are supposed to have more fun, not hair gum! Sorry. It’s what I do.
See you next time,Maniacs!
Monstermatt’s Bad Monster Jokes Vol.1
Monsters For Charity