CADILLAC BLUES Medium: Acrylic on Wood Panel
Size: 15″ x30″
There are not many North American automobiles that share the status of a Cadillac. Even when falling apart and covered in rust they still command our attention. This painting captures a 1950 Cadillac hidden away behind some outbuildings on a rural property. I spent time as a kid playing in old vehicles like this on my grandparents’ farm in Manitoba and get quite nostalgic every time I paint a scene like this. It always brings back the smell of the musty interiors, the feel of the weathered plastic steering wheels and the cracked vinyl seats that would always cut your legs as you slid in and out in shorts.The post-war 1950 Cadillac reached all-time high end car status and boasted luxury, speed, and overall great looks. Designed and inspired by wartime aircraft, the 1950 Cadillac featured large tailfins, as well as clad all-over chrome, that set it apart from other cars of the era. Cadillac’s other distinctive styling attribute was its front-bumper. What had started out after the war as a pair of artillery shell-shaped bumper guards moved higher in the front-end design as the 1950s wore on. Becoming known as Dagmar Bumpers for their similarity to the buxom 1950s television personality, they were toned down in 1958 and gone the next year. I find that the character of a vehicle is typically found in the front grille and composing a crop of the vehicle like I’ve done in this painting showcase’s that effect. It brings us up close and personal with the subject as opposed to standing a distance away and looking upon the vehicle in its entirety. I really enjoy painting old and rusty vehicles like this Cadillac as there is so much opportunity to capture all the various textures that begin to take over what was once a polished and perfect vehicle. Every bit of damage is evidence of a story that could be told and shows the results of a life lived.
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