April 9th, 2009

andrew potter

In memory of Esther Wyndham

Mary Lutyens, a prolific novelist, biographer, magazine writer and editor whose career spanned more than six decades, passed away April 9, 1999. She was 90. Lutyens, whose father was the well-known architect Sir Edwin Lutyens and whose maternal grandfather, the Earl of Lytton, was viceroy of India from 1876-1880, died in London.

Although she wrote 13 novels and excelled as an editor, she was most acclaimed for her biographies, including writings on her father's work, her parents' unhappy marriage and her grandfather. She also wrote a biographical series on the Indian religious teacher Krishnamurti, who was a spiritual adviser to her mother, and about art critic and social theorist John Ruskin and his wife Effie. One of her best known biographies, "Millais and the Ruskins," explored John and Effie's relationship with Sir John Everett Millais, the father of Pre-Raphaelite painting. It described the impact of Millais' love for Effie on the Ruskin marriage and its eventual collapse.

"You so often have to write the book you want to read," The Daily Telegraph quoted her as having once said.

Her autobiography, "To be Young," was published in 1959. Lutyens was born July 31, 1908 and was educated at Queen's College in London and in Sydney, Australia. She began her career as a fiction writer with the 1933 "Forthcoming Marriages," and wrote several novels before World War II. After the war, she wrote romance novels under the pseudonym Esther Wyndham.

Lutyens was married twice, first to stockbroker Anthony Sewell from 1930-1945, then to royal furrier and art expert J. G. Links in 1945. Links died in 1997.

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andrew potter

Michael Breyette: On the Drawing Board

Michael Breyette is not new on the page of my LiveJournal. I discovered him years ago, probably at the beginning of my experience as reader of M/M romance, he was the cover artist for the Romentics Novels by Scott & Scott. I became a frequent visitor both of his blog (http://michaelbreyette.blogspot.com/) than his website (http://www.breyette.com/news/news.cfm) and I pushed some new authors to submit a story for his 1000 Words Project (but I don't know if someone followed my advice ;-) ). Anyway I was waiting for this anthology combining the wonderful art works by Breyette with dedicated short stories to be released when I found that Michael Breyette is now listed as MLR Press artist, and so I made two plus two: maybe MLR Press was planning to release that anthology? Obviously I'm too much curious to not ask and so I harassed Michael till he didn't give me some answers... (I should think on a career in the police investigation...)

Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Elisa: If it's not a secret, can you say something more about the "1000 Words Project" and your collaboration with MLR Press? Have you already a list of the authors who will take part to the project? or at least some of the images they chose for the stories?

Michael: The working title for the 1000 Words Project book is "Illustrated Men". A short list of stories has been made from all the entries and include new authors as well as some that have been previously published. Some of the stories to be included are ones based on my pieces titled 'Carson', 'Buds', 'Metamorphosis' and 'Red Truck'. The piece MLR has license for the cover of one of their other anthologies is "Don't Ask, Don't Tell", which I expect is a collection of military themed tales.  (Ndr Buds is also the cover of Spare Parts by Scott & Scott, one of the reason why I searched more info on Michael...)

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Elisa: I'm really curious to know what inspires you, since your paintings are already a complete story... you don't paint an abstract beautiful man, you put him in a contest, with a story, and for what I know, you often do that without a commission. So I was wondering if you have a story inside your mind that you represent.

Michael: At one time most of my work was just the celebration of the male physique, and from time to time that is my primary motivation. As my work evolved I began incorporating more of myself into it. My feelings, fantasies, values and just things going on in the world around me are sparks of inspiration. Images of gorgeous men are great but I enjoy expressing more than that and I think by building a setting and creating a moment gives other layers and depth that the viewer can connect with. I have a vague idea of a background story with each work. It actually develops as the piece develops. The art sometimes takes me in another direction than where I intended to go.

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Elisa: Do you use real life models? Since, let me say that your men are really beautiful, but not that "out-of-the-world" beauty, they can be the hunk you pass on the street walking to work every morning...

Michael: No, most of these men are not real, however I do draw inspiration from and reference pics of real guys. I usually compose a figure from an assortment of others then give them my own spin. I do try to keep them looking like someone you might actually meet.


Elisa: How do you work? I follow your blog, so I see your On the Drawing Board posts, but I'm not an artist, so my question is really simple, what media do you use? and technique (pastel, oil, computer graphics...)?

Michael: My medium is pastels. I use my computer as a tool at the beginning to create what I call a blue print. I begin with my idea, then I cut and paste elements together on my computer. I manipulate, alter, and adjust to work out issues of perspective and proportion. Then I make an outline pencil sketch, working out, refining and filling in gaps left in the blueprint. Armed with the pencil sketch and blueprint I start working on what will be the final piece with pastels on paper.

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About Michael: Michael Breyette is a self taught artist who has been drawing for as long as he can remember. But, it wasn't until moving from a conservative family and hometown in rural upstate NY that he felt the freedom to express his true self and his true passions in his artwork.

The resulting illustrations of male nudes and gay themed works rendered in soft pastel are what turned his hobby into a career. In 2000 he found a global audience by posting a few of these pieces on the Internet. Three years later he made the decision to quit his secure day job and be a full time self supporting artist.

Red Truck

One of the major rewards of that decision came in 2007 when renowned gay pictorial publishing house Bruno Gmünder of Germany published Summer Moved On, a collection of Michael's works, followed by calendars in 2008 and 2009. His works also appear in the anthology Stripped and The Greatest Erotic Art of Today Volumes 1 & 2 (for which he won the Viewer's Choice Award in 2008), as well as numerous magazines including Blue, Manner Aktuel, Unzipped, Gaydar, and [2] for which he earned the distinction of having the magazine's first ever illustrated cover. His work has also appeared on several book covers.

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Michael's works can be viewed and purchased at his online gallery, www.breyette.com, where in addition to his originals; he offers prints, postcards, and magnets and copies of his books and calendars. He is also represented by leading male figurative gallery, Lyman-Eyer, of Provincetown MA.

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It's obvious that I post this picture only for the goody, since the calendar is two years old... ;-)

More Artists at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Art

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