David Norcross

Nasty by Nature

It’s the end of June and I have been fighting the Summertime Blues. With the longer days and the scorching heat, all I want to do is chill out in the AC with my two girls by the time night rolls around. Who doesn’t love the Wheel of Fortune? I do, but I have been really good the past few weeks and I’ve managed to crank out a couple of new paintings.

Both paintings came together over time and rather organically. Both were also heavily influenced by my girls. I wanted to paint another buck head and one night while sketching, I remembered a necklace I had bought my wife years ago. Its got a pendant of a buck head gazing upward with its tongue out. I have always loved that necklace. It’s like the animal is tasting the air or has been stopped dead in its tracks, either way its one of my all time favorites from Pretty Pretty in Staunton, VA.


I am really happy with the way this painting came out because it showcases a lot of the painting techniques I have been concentrating on the past few years and the color palette is slightly different from the past animals I have done.

While working on the buck, I also finished a new book cover. I have been sketching a lot of rabbits lately and if you knew anything about my soon-to-be four year-old, you would know that bunnies are a big deal in my house. This painting of a rabbit with a lightning bolt across its face feels like it’s in the same family as the buck. I couldn’t have found a cooler background; the silver book cover is so strong, it makes the rabbit that much more badass. I tried to choose some new color combinations with this piece as well.


In both of these pieces the theme of nature is clearly present. But instead of carefully representing the beauty of nature in a traditional manner, I want to convey my own interpretation of wildlife. To me, nature has always been mystical, unpredictable, dark and a little scary.

In other news, I have been searching the inner-webs for new outlets for my work. As I apply to shows and exhibits, the questions of why I paint and the significance of my work keep haunting me. Answering these questions and writing my artist statement is tough and I am struggling. For the past few years, I have been writing this blog and it has helped me tremendously in talking about my work, but writing about why I make art and what it signifies to me, without sounding like an ass, feels impossible. Words do not come to me half as easy as images do. They do not fuel my fire when I am exhausted like painting does. Still, I am working on it and kicking it around in my head everyday. Hopefully I will be able to commit it to paper soon enough, but not today. Today, I’m gonna take two weeks, gonna have a vacation.


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