Monday, March 23, 2009
What's In A Name?
I wanted to call her The Surf Punk because that was how I thought of her as she first began to take shape in my sketchbook. Later, I took a liking to the word 'fierce'. She became The Fierce Surfer for a while but the adjective has become so bloody trendy and self-congratulatory among a generation of young American female celebrities – look at poor Beyoncé sashaying around inside her corporately constructed alter ego, Sasha Fierce – I couldn't live with it for long.When the acrylic on paper study was finished, she looked more savage, less pretty, a really dangerous-looking Career Babe, despite the deliberately ironic palette of girly pinks and caramel creams. I fell in love with her toughness and care-less sexual tension. I took to calling her The Hardcore Surfer – and yes, the double entendre was deliberate.By the time I scanned the image to email to the Sydney collectors who'd commissioned it, the title had been pared down again. It was now just The Surfer. In the end, simplicity said it all best.