The freelance life is one of constant impending ends. One project ends, another begins. Many of my ends are the beginnings of someone else's work. Or the end of a larger project; the completion of a magazine, or the launch of a clothing line, etc, etc. . .
The ENDS I speak of are in the industry called deadlines. Sometimes I work on many projects at once, and budget where the deadlines hit, with the time the human body needs to sleep, and the time I physically need to finish all of the projects. I love to test the limits of this and manage to keep up on the deadlines. Deadlines are just as they sound. They are the absolute end, last finish date of a project (w/ sometimes time for revision and other times not)
Recently I've been really busy, and I can't complain (many ends to meet). I love art, this is what I live for. And commercial art / pop art is a real trip. I have so much I want to tell you in this update, but I think I'll break it up over the next few weeks. I have recently gotten on a list in AOL's mainframe which allows me to send bulk e-mail of my updates, but I have to send them out about once a week or I'm off the list. So next week you will be hearing about one of my biggest fans, who contacted me recently. It's bizarre to find that there are art groupies of this magnitude, but for this week I'll leave you with an example of an end, which happened last week.
So as I have mentioned before, I'm involved with this LIFEbeat THE MUSIC INDUSTRY FIGHTS AIDS, celebrity charity auction "The Sound of Art", and am working on the show stopper painting for the event. Like I said in prior updates, I am making a giant series of portraits on canvas all to be grouped into one big square and auctioned off at the big event (TRYING FOR 16). The portraits are all of rappers, and will all be signed by the rapper pictured. I have a great group of rappers and PR people whom are working with me on this project.
Well, last week the VMA's (Mtv Video Music Awards) were in town, and that meant a lot of rappers would also be in town. So Def Jam called me up and told me if I delivered the paintings to them by Monday of last week, they could get 7 of them signed by the rappers that would be in town for the event- that's a quick turn around. This call was on a Friday morning. That gave me that afternoon & night of Friday, all of Saturday , and Sunday to get these paintings finished. Otherwise I might miss the opportunity to some of the Def Jam rappers signatures 3 all nighters and a few cat naps later I finished the last of the paintings at 2:30 P.M. on Monday. I had the paintings drying when I went to check the train schedule. 3:10 was the next train to Manhattan, and the next one after that wouldn't arrive in Manhattan till after 5. So I had to catch this train. I showered and had the paintings under the fan dried by 2:45, I had them bubble wrapped and was out the door at 2:50.
Now, normally, without 8 paintings ( I was also delivering Lil' Kim's painting elsewhere in the city) I could probably make it to the train station in 20- 25 minutes walking (remember I just moved here and haven't even had to take a cab to the station yet so I didn't have their phone number- which would have taken 5 minutes). And this for some reason had to be a scorcher of a summer day. Having worked all night in air conditioning I was wearing jeans..speed walking with this giant cumbersome pearl paint bag of paintings and no sleep = no fun.
So I speed walked, and jogged, and sprinted, and walked again, every time I ran my shoes started to fall off, because they were winter shoes that were meant to be worn with thicker socks so I was constantly on the verge of loosing them. I did this till I got maybe a quarter mile away from the station. The time was now 3:04. If you've ever been out to Long Island, it's flat out here. Which kills me more because I can see the train station in the distance. Then it dawned on me, there was no chance In hell I was going to make it there on foot by the time that train left.
I started trying to flag down cars. First I started approaching people parked at a red light pointed the opposite direction. One man said he didn't know where the train station was and was in a hurry, As I pointed I said "for further reference, it's right over there, the thing with all the parked cars, and the idling train."
Finally a man was pulling out of his driveway, I ran up on his drivers side window, like a sweat soaked, exhausted car jacker. I offered him five bucks if he could give me a lift to the train station. He reluctantly said "hop in." He was old and had a brand new truck. Come to think of it, I should have jacked his ass! HAH
Well he said, you don't have to pay me anything, and we took the minute trip to the station, I thanked him profusely and told him I was an artist and was delivering these paintings and they absolutely have to be in Manhattan by 5 and how greatful I was.
I dropped the word sir into every sentence. I don't think he bought the artist story, even though it was true. I was thinking I should have lied and made it sound more urgent. I'm a organ transporter, my vehicle broke down, and I have to get this kidney to Manhattan by five or Little Billy will die!"
He just drove and paid me no mind. It was uncomfortable, so I just kept talking, mostly just thanking him, hoping to garner a courtesy response, to see if he bought it. I wasn't acting, but I felt like I had to convince him I wasn't lying or something.
He left me empty, with no response, he didn't even look as I said my goodbyes, closed the door and clumsily (with shoes falling off) sprinted for the train. I got on board at 3:10.
I think in my mindless sleep deprived babbling of thanks I might have said something retarded to the man, like "You did you good deed for today sir, do I have to pay it forward now?"
A good deed, from a weird man.
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