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Robert Johnson's Crossroads by PlaidTidings Robert Johnson's Crossroads by PlaidTidings
Project: Blues and All That Jazz


"Robert Johnson, feels the moonlight bearing down on his head and the back of his neck as the moon seems to be growing bigger and bigger and brighter and brighter. He feels it like the heat of the noonday sun bearing down, and the howling and moaning of the dog in the ditch penetrates his soul, coming up through his feet and the tips of his fingers through his legs and arms, settling in that big empty place beneath his breastbone causing him to shake and shudder like a man with the palsy. Robert Johnson says, 'That dog gone mad.'

The man laughs. 'That hound belong to me. He ain't mad, he's got the Blues. I got his soul in my hand.' "

Taken from a vision ([link]) by fellow bluesman Henry Goodman, of the fateful night when Robert Johnson met the Devil-man at the crossroads outside Rosedale Mississippi, and sold his soul to become one of the greatest Delta blues guitarists of his time.



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Woo! It's done! :dance: Lovin' the way it turned out, especially the Devil Man, and Johnson, and the moon...


Also, you gotta download it to get the full size.

Also also, my tablet is my new best friend. Sooo fracking shiny, omigod
Add a Comment:
 
:iconufotestpilot:
UFOtestpilot Featured By Owner Dec 19, 2012
awesome painting ? not sure how you did it , doesn't matter , its terrific
Commander Zephyr
keep an eye on the sky , it might be me
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Dec 20, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
I made a line drawing by hand, then scanned it in and did everything else in photoshop. :)
Reply
:iconufotestpilot:
UFOtestpilot Featured By Owner Dec 19, 2012
nice , I have read where he used to go to house party's and most of the time "Sun House" another legend of the real blues , was playing and most people thought Robert Johnson was terrable and would play other peoples songs, they say he was a lousy farmer and a worse musician . Sun house didn't like Johnson to play because he was so bad and dressed ragged. Johnson disapares for maybe 2 weeks , then shows up at one of the house partys , nice new suit ,new shoes , all cleaned and polished , Sun house says not him again , Johnson starts playing all new blues stuff no one heard before and all where amaized at how great he was . how could he have gotten so good where did he get the money all new cloths new guitar in such a short time
and thats how the legend was born, born in the deep darkness of a hot Mississippi night with the devil and his hell hound
they say when he died I think @ 27 he was howeling at the moon and crawling on all fours. He was poisoned by a jealous husband . so the howeling and the crawling helped the legend of him being the devils slave one of my favorite blues men
Commander Zephyr
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:iconmissvampyzdesigns:
missvampyzdesigns Featured By Owner May 9, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
awesome, love the crossroads scene!! reminds me of supernatural, the shading and the line work is ace, this is brill, love the dog:D i am almost fainting
Reply
:iconmihi-cura-futuri:
Mihi-Cura-Futuri Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2011  Student
Very nice!
Reply
:iconexcalibur-t005:
Excalibur-T005 Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2010
What's really funny about this is the connections that can be drawn with the novel Crime & Punishment, mainly the scene where Raskolnikov goes to the crossroads to confess publicly to the murder.

Then, of course, there's Eric Clapton's famous song referencing this very same story, which I happen to be listening to right now.
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2010  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks for looking, and thanks for the +fav! :D

I've never read Crime and Punishment, but what a coincidence that you should be listening to a song about Johnson and the Devil just when you found this picture!
Reply
:icongorsyn:
Gorsyn Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2009
Very nice. Johnson's turned-up sleeves and his defiant stance add a lot of character to him. Your traditional portrayal of the Devil would look foolish in most other drawings, but in this situation it fits perfectly. The hound's howling and flattened ears convey its dread well.

The only thing I don't necessarily like is the somewhat manga-ish shape of Johnson and the Devil, but that is a minor cavil that doesn't detract from the overall quality. Very nice, indeed.
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks for the comments! I agree about the style, it didn't go in the direction I wanted at all (which was more of a highly stylized folk-art look rather than cartoony), and even though it came out looking just fine in the end, I still wish I'd been able to get what I originally wanted.
Reply
:iconblinkers:
blinkers Featured By Owner Nov 22, 2008
love the style.
someone mentioned O Brother Where Art Thou...they filmed a scene with a man called Tommy Johnson at the crossroads, and the idea for that was pretty obviously lifted from here. great stuff.
Reply
:iconufotestpilot:
UFOtestpilot Featured By Owner Dec 19, 2012
yes , what a great flick , love it
Commander Zephyr planet ╤ Zephenon ╤
keep an eye on the sky , it might be me
Reply
:iconwoodstarling:
woodstarling Featured By Owner May 14, 2008
This is AWESOME.
Reply
:iconninereeds-da:
ninereeds-DA Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2008
I love this. The dog howling is a great touch.

I have featured this deviation in my journal [link]
If you prefer I can remove it at your request.
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2008  Professional Digital Artist
Always grateful for a feature! :D

Thanks!
Reply
:iconninereeds-da:
ninereeds-DA Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2008
Always a pleasure to do them :)
Reply
:iconcavscoutkid:
CavScoutKid Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2008
ohh! that brings me back to the original crossroads movie with joe satriani
Reply
:iconmakinmagic:
MakinMagic Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2008  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Cool.
Reply
:iconpeifon:
peifon Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2007
pretty cool.
Really like the moon in the back of the devil-man.

Nice work
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2007  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks :) The devil-man's my favorite, but the moon makes a close second for that position, too.

Thanks for looking!
Reply
:iconblizzardcomics:
BlizzardComics Featured By Owner Oct 21, 2007
Pretty shading and sky.
Reply
:icontraitortotherules:
TraitorToTheRules Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2007
I really love the shapes of the moon and clouds in this, they have a "drifty" texture and the moon jsut looks amazing looming like that :D it's like it's trying to sneak up on them :XD:
Reply
:iconarielmanx:
ArielManx Featured By Owner May 15, 2007
Very, very cool. I love everything about it!
Reply
:iconinterfaceleader:
InterfaceLeader Featured By Owner May 12, 2007
The more I look at this, the more I like it :) The poses are great, there's so much life and character to them. And I adore the way you did the clouds.

Great picture! Kudos!
Reply
:iconjoge23:
JoGe23 Featured By Owner May 7, 2007
wow!!!!!! i really love this one!! amazing draw! i like ur style!
Reply
:icontrenton9:
Trenton9 Featured By Owner May 1, 2007  Professional Digital Artist
Nicely stylized. It reminds me of some of the old African American Paintings from way back in 30s and 40s.
Reply
:iconcelestialwriter:
celestialwriter Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2007  Student General Artist
Nice!
Reply
:iconhexaditidom:
Hexaditidom Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2007  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I like this idea. The first thing I saw was the roadsign, which contrasts well with the moon. (You could play with the colors of the moon and sign a bit more to exaggerate that) The placement of the figures on the left side make a good composition, all are posed well. Maybe the guitar's shadow is a little high, but otherwise the shadows are working.

If I were to cover up the top half of the picture, I would think it was daytime. The ground is shaded enough, but adding a little glow further out on the hills will add some depth and contrast. The devil looks fine; the guitarist's shirt could be darker in the back, and some highlights on him will make him stand out. And this might be just a matter of style, but the clouds might look better if they got darker as they got closer to the moon.

Interesting little story behind it, and overall very stylish work, keep it up! :)
Reply
:icononedramamom:
onedramamom Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2007
You have out done yourself this time and brought tears to my eyes! Congratulations!

I love it and I'm glad you got the tablet.

Good luck with your review.
Reply
:iconsefenite:
sefenite Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2007
that's lovely.

the signpost is missing writing though (or is that intentional?) and I think the clouds could do with a tad more contrast given the proximity of the moon...but really, it's beautiful :D
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2007  Professional Digital Artist
I originally had a city name written on the one sign facing the viewer, but it just looked hokey and contrived so I left it out
Reply
:iconsefenite:
sefenite Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2007
I think it looks better left out, it suits the 'wtf' factor of the photo (before you read the story, that is)
Reply
:iconanoya:
Anoya Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2007   Photographer
This looks pretty good. I love the moon and the clouds. Shadows look good and I love the silhouettes.

Well done! :thumbsup:
Reply
:iconwickedjulie:
WickedJulie Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2007
Hmm.. feels like its missing signs on the arrows
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2007  Professional Digital Artist
by signs do you mean writing?
Reply
:iconwickedjulie:
WickedJulie Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2007
yes.
Reply
:iconnortagem:
nortagem Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2007
Interesting concept and characterization. At first I thought this was some modern-day version of "Bonjour Monsieur Courbet", if you're familiar with his work.
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2007  Professional Digital Artist
not familiar with that, I'll have to look it up sometime
Reply
:iconthe-dude257:
the-dude257 Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007   Filmographer
i like this one, ive always been a fan of crossroad seanes with big moons.
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007  Professional Digital Artist
can't say as I knew big moons and crossroads were a big theme... glad you like it, though
Reply
:icongummiente07:
Gummiente07 Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007  Hobbyist Photographer
I don't know why but it reminds me ghost rider
Reply
:iconhunter1828:
hunter1828 Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007  Hobbyist Photographer
In the new Ghost Rider movie, the scene where the adult Johnny Blaze meets Mephisto takes place at a crossroads. The idea for the scene was lifted directly from the influence of the Robert Johnson story.

RWT
Reply
:iconstarduskmoon:
starduskmoon Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007  Hobbyist General Artist
There is a book called Ghost Road Blues by Jonathon Maeberry. It's about a blues guy who killed the devil and then he himself was killed. When the devil came back, he was brought back as well.
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007  Professional Digital Artist
Sounds like a classic blues folk story :)
Reply
:iconhunter1828:
hunter1828 Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007  Hobbyist Photographer
Really nice. I really like the devil, too. The red lines for him are a really nice touch. I also like his hat. Is it horns, or just a funky fedora? Nicely done! I also like the way the moon actually seems to glow. That's a wonderful touch.

Makes me want to sing... "Goin' down to Rosedale, take my rider by my side..."

RWT
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007  Professional Digital Artist
I could tell you how to interpret bits of this but really now... where's the fun in doing that? Is it a hat or the Devil Man's horns? You tell me ;)
Reply
:iconhunter1828:
hunter1828 Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007  Hobbyist Photographer
My question was rhetorical. :D

I am on a quest now to compile all things that are influenced by or reference Robert Johnson's crossroads story. Damn you! :rofl:

RWT
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007  Professional Digital Artist
I have inspired! Muahahaha!
Reply
:iconhunter1828:
hunter1828 Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007  Hobbyist Photographer
Sure, you're so proud of yourself... :p

RWT
Reply
:iconplaidtidings:
PlaidTidings Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007  Professional Digital Artist
'course! It's my life's greatest pursuit to inspire others. Well, one of them at any rate :P
Reply
:icontudogg:
Tudogg Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2007
reminds me to the movie "o brother, where art thou?". nice work =)
Reply
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Submitted on
April 29, 2007
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