List: Automotive Artist “The Handle” An Up-And-Comer
By Seyth Miersma
August 19, 2010
“DOWNTOWN TAKEDOWN” — You gotta love astronauts. They're bad. Imagine for a moment that you are an astronaut. You stroll into your local sandwich shop and the guy behind the counter asks you what you do for a living. I tell him I blast off, fool. And when I'm not doing that, I fight crime. In Los Angeles. That's what I'd do in my spare time, anyway if I were an astronaut. Now gimme my sandwich.
“OUT OF ITS ELEMENT” — This Robot is definitely out of its Element. In more ways than one. The Dog, too. They decided to take a ride one day and ended up near a farm. "Hey, where's the cow?"
“LOVE MY CIVIC” — True Story. My friend Terry comes up to me one day and tells me he wants to jump his car off the freeway....through the guardrail, over the median. In his '91 Honda Civic, which sits about 2 inches off the ground. He asked me to join him, but the certainty of death wasn't too enticing that day. So I decided to follow behind him with the coroner on speed dial. Anyway, we got on the freeway. We're up to speed and all of a sudden Terry veers right, hits a dip, launches in the air, spinning up and over the guardrail like a frisbee. I raced down to the next exit about half a mile down the road and turned back to find him. I caught up with him still in his car, all smiles and eating a ham sandwich. He was fine. The car was fine, and I was amazed. I tell you there was a flying car on that day. I saw it with my own two eyes. Crazy Terry!
“CHILLAXIN’ IN SPACE” — Just when I begin to contemplate the hundreds of billions of dollars spent on the space program for a select few who get to call themselves astronauts, who are probably arrogant and justifiably so, just when I begin to think that those funds would best be served padding the Chicago Cubs starting lineup so that they can finally win the 'series, and just when I start to think that we should let the aliens pay the money to find us, NASA releases a photo of a scene like the painting you're looking at. A quiet, peaceful, and proud image of the space shuttle escaping the dreaded busy workweek to chillax in space. And then I realize it was all money well spent. We all need to escape the workweek. I wish I could be chillaxin in space right now.
“MOJAVE OR BUST” — Roy Halibut was a tough guy. Kind-of exactly like Chuck Norris. Anyway, one day while Roy was at work he overheard some of his work mates discussing the mysterious Mojave Phone Booth in the middle of the Mojave Desert. They looked it up on the internet. They talked about calling the number. They even entertained the thought of making a roadtrip, a 4 hour trek, to go and see the phone booth for themselves. All this talk went on for days and weeks. Roy Halibut got sick of hearing about the Mojave phone booth.
“ACURA INTEGRA” — You know it and I know it. We may read magazines, newspapers, or blogs that discuss some of the best cars ever made, which often include expensive, fancy-pants technology-laden fuel-sippin' statement-making overstyled barges that will be forgotten long before their expensive leases are up. But you know it and I know it. If you know this car than you know it. If you've owned one then you are a better man than me 'cause I've never had one. But you know and I know, we don't even have to mention this car's name. You know and I know it's one of the greats.
For those of you who haven’t yet had the pleasure of perusing its digital realm, Etsy.com is digital store that focuses on selling vintage, handmade, and generally interesting examples of stuff. A truly social marketplace, Etsy is made up of individual “stores,” each featuring the wares of a particular artist, craftsman, or collector—we tend to think of it as a kind of indie-eBay.
As our predilections—even in the off-hours when we’re not driving and writing about cars—tend to fall toward automotive themes, we’re often searching through Etsy’s oft-updated listings, looking for cool car items. (At some point we’ll publish a list of all our favorite automotive-skewed artists on Etsy.) It was one such recent spate of searching that led us to discover the artist known as The Handle.
Now, we’re no art critics, but there’s something about The Handle’s cartoonish, whimsical style, bold colors, and tendency to add gratuitous robots/astronauts that we just can’t get enough of. Add to that the artist’s clear appreciation for the form automotive and his hilarious personal descriptions of each piece, and, well, we’ve already picked out a painting for a blank spot on the WR office wall.
Scroll through our list of works by The Handle, complete with descriptions and the stories behind each work as provided by the artist himself. Don’t forget to check out his Etsy shop (www.etsy.com/shop/thehandle), too.