DC's Man of the Match Guitar

*I recently updated my blog app within my website and found some old blog post drafts. This post was originally written in September 2018, two years ago.*

I had the great privilege of painting a guitar for Heineken's "Man of the Match" for the soccer team DC United! I received free tickets to the game(!!!) - plus payment, of course - and I was thrilled to share the experience with Inwook. We had a great time watching the game; we didn't realize how much fun it is to watch soccer live! It's become our favorite sport to attend, for sure.

For the guitar, I wanted to do something that paid homage to the team's eagle mascot, and also the fact that they utilize the DC flag. With those two things in mind, I also tried my best to let my style shine through.

I'll admit! It took 3 tries...I was overly confident the first-go-round, but ended up with a less-than-cool image. I spray-painted over this first attempt and tried again.

For the second image, I was going more for a wrap-around look, and tried to keep it folk-y. Again, this fell flat. Another coat of spray paint to cover my "mistake."

I finally found some decent inspiration and landed on this idea: shaping the eagle to fit the body of the guitar. I was stricter with my color choices, opting for a minty blue, red, yellow, white, and black. I sketched the eagle image onto the guitar and outlined it in black sharpie. I then went into with acrylic paint and filled in.

It turned out so much better than I had hoped - but was such a relief after the third try. I could have been frustrated with the path that led me to this final product, i.e. not a very efficient one, but in the words of Thomas Edison, "I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work."

Thankfully, I didn't need to ruin this guitar 10,000 times to figure out what I wanted to paint, but it's worth mentioning: there's no need to give up because something isn't perfect the first time. A lot of artists believe that this is a wasteful side of creating - specifically wasting materials and time. True! But I'm grateful to have pushed through the find the best result.

P.S. I came across another electric guitar and saved it from the trash. It need new strings, and definitely some of my art - but I plan to keep painting guitars, if I can!

Marni Manning - Artist

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