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Un-Masking the Mind

September 17th, 2009

I was invited this past week to paint two masks for a charity auction called “Un-Masking the Mind” which will benefit Innovations International Charter School of Nevada. What made these particular masks special is they had been autographed by Matt Lauer and Meredith Vieira, the anchors for NBC’s Today Show. My challenge was to create a design around their autographs that both tied the autograph into the design and somehow represented what they do.

For Matt’s mask I chose to use the Today Show color scheme with the Today Show logo and the NBC Peacock since he has been a major part of the Today Show for many years now. For Meredith’s mask I split the mask into two parts, one representing her work on the Today Show, and the other representing her work as host for the syndicated “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire”. I used a similar color scheme to Matt’s for the top section and included a white NBC peacock. For the bottom section I chose blue, which is a major part of “Millionaire’s” color scheme, and included two abstract shapes similar to those used in the “Millionaire” clues. In both masks I was able to work these designs around their signatures fairly seemlessly, for which I am quite proud.

The auction is now open, so you can see these masks and the others being painted by several other artists and organizations. Who knows, maybe you’ll even want to make a bid…

Matt Lauer & Meredith Vieira Autograph Masks – Completed 9-16-09

I have painted another mask for this event autographed by “Kathy Griffin”. Click on her name to see the finished piece and what I had to say about it.

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18 Comments for 'Un-Masking the Mind'

  1. Kathy Said:

    Very cool! I like your decision to infuse meaning into the design. Well done. How did you get the autographs?

  2. Kathleen Krucoff Said:

    Hi Don,

    I always enjoy when artists like yourself share how they derive their designs. These are awesome by the way and another testament to your creativity.

    I’ll look forward to the posting of the link and checking out everyone’s work.

    Thanks! Kathleen

  3. Don Said:

    Hi Kathy, Thanks. The lady putting this event together, Peggy Copeland, of Image Brokers LV, used to be the Promotions Manager for an NBC affiliate. She used her contacts to have these masks sent to the NBC offices in NYC. Matt and Meredith were given the choice of either painting them and then signing them or signing them with the understanding someone else would then paint them. Peggy and I had originally met in NYC 5 years ago at a convention for TV promotion managers and artists called Promax/BDA and became fast friends. It being a small world, she now lives and works in Vegas and thought of me when she needed these masks painted… Not sure why… 😉 -Don

  4. Don Said:

    Hi Kathleen, Thank you. I’ll have the link posted as soon as it’s available. -Don

  5. Suzanne Berry Said:

    These are both excellent and exciting! Wow! Congrats. I’m sure she thought of you because your gifted. Sorry, i read you post to Kathleen. Beautiful work, I love how you tied it all together. looking forward to the link. great color work as usual.

    thanks so much for your comment on the challenge. hopefully i’ll work more because of it. take good care. great job and very cool! best, suz

  6. Don Said:

    Hi Suz, No apologies necessary. I always like reading the comments, as well. Often I get as much from the comments as from the actual blog. And now I thank you for your great comments. Good luck with your challenges. -Don

  7. deborah Said:

    You just never know what will result from chance encounters…. congrats on this project! The way you incorporated the autographs and connected your painting to Matt and Meredith was very creative – I’m sure they’d be pleased.

  8. Peggy Said:

    Thanks, Don, for your wonderful work! The masks are great and I hope they bring a pretty penny to the school. I’ll be sure to send you the link to the online auction once it’s live. We have masks from other TV personalities as well as musical performers, Las Vegas shows, businesses and politicians.

  9. Don Michael, Jr. Said:

    You’re right, Deborah. The people we meet today could become a major part of who we are and where we’re going tomorrow. Thank you for the great comment. -Don

  10. Don Michael, Jr. Said:

    Hi Peggy, I hope they do great for you guys. Thanks for the opportunity to do this. It was really a fun challenge. As soon as I get your link I’ll get it posted here. -Don

  11. Rachel Said:

    That’s wonderful, Don!! The masks look lovely – it’s a interesting change to see your painting ON masks as opposed to OF them. 🙂 What an honor to participate in that auction… and what a great cause with their auction benefitting education!

  12. Don Michael, Jr. Said:

    Thanks, Rachel…and welcome to the comments section of my blog. I do feel quite honored to be a part of this. It’s the first time I’ve ever painted ON one – much less two – of them. -Don

  13. T.L. Anderson Said:

    Great job Don! Wonderful door of oportunity
    for you! As others have said, I too like the
    way you worked your design around the signatures.
    Best of good fortune to you & Peggy!
    Take care,

  14. Don’s Blog » More Un-Masking the Mind Said:

    […] invited to paint two masks for a charity auction called “Un-Masking the Mind” – one signed by Matt Lauer and the other by Meredith Vieira. Well, this past Friday, my good friend Peggy, who is putting the event together, called in a panic […]

  15. Don Michael, Jr. Said:

    Tom, Thank you so much for your great compliment and your good wishes. -Don

  16. Don’s Blog » Hard to Paint… Said:

    […] the online auction site for “Un-Mask”, for which I painted “3 masks”, is now up and running. Masks are continually being added so be sure to sign up for the email […]

  17. Don’s Blog » Un-Masking the Mind Event Said:

    […] 41 masks on hand for the live auction, and all 41 were sold that night! I’m proud to say that the three I had been invited to paint garnered over $300 for the […]

  18. Don’s Blog » Unmasking Yet Again Said:

    […] Vegas artists. (I wrote about the event here.) I had the honor of painting the masks autographed by Matt Lauer, Meredith Vieira and Kathy Griffin which garnered over $300 for the […]



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