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The Vulture

MAY 15, 2008
This is mostly a drawing and then an airbrush toned oil painting afterward.
For a job last week for Fortune, I was asked to paint a vulture about to swoop down on an unsuspecting Wall Street below. The AD said that they were envisioning a Gotham City version of New York; darker and even distorted. I love jobs like this and I needed it too. I love doing portraits but I think I had done almost 20 in a row. What came to mind was the work of Barry Jackson. I loved his work from the 1980's though I have no hard copies of any of it, but work off of memory. The assignment, "The Vulture" refers to how the private equity firms that will thrive in the year ahead are those that know how to profit from others' misfortunes, swooping down to pick over the bones. Fortune is great to work with.
My thumbnail. I always trust my initial designs. Usually.
A sent sketch
The think that was requested that I had to deal with was the inclusion of a person with a briefcase coming out of the stock exchange. The scale would make that a tough thing to do. I had to shift things and use a LONG shadow to make that tiny figure have more of a presence. Very clever!