Rainbow Rising Painting

The story of how I came to re-create the RAINBOW RISING cover...

.....It's just one of those sappy love stories from us women, who can sometimes fall for a guy so hard, that for some reason we feel compelled to adopt something, like their musical tastes, for example, and naively think that this will somehow make him to like us or love us just a little more. Sometimes this method works, but often times it doesn't, I am afraid. I was just 18 and in love (I thought) with this guy (he was 23) ...who liked Rainbow.

RISING was not the first Rainbow album I bought with my hard earned cash; instead I bought BENT OUT OF SHAPE in January 1985. Yet, there was something about that album cover of this hand clutching a rainbow which intrigued me as I flipped through the record store racks. The following month, I was able to buy RISING, along with STRAIGHT BETWEEN THE EYES. The idea of the recreating the album cover on canvas came soon after I knew that I was moving from my native California to Arizona later that year. I wanted to give the guy I cared about something to remember me by - I had hoped.

Now, I do not consider myself one of those artists who can whip up a painting on one's beckon call; I was a little more precise and methodical than that. I really never had any formal experience in art, before or since then, but as I was painting this, I knew this painting was going to be "special".

In general, the hardest part about recreating a cover of an album of this magnitude was the variance of color used in the original rendition and the medium that I used (oil paints) in order to recreate it. The final product was on a 20 x 36 inch canvas. The time it took for that to dry for each part was quite frustrating at times because I was worried the colors would smear into each other and ruin what I had done the night before. I never painted this standing up like a majority of artists paint. I placed the canvas on a flat surface on the floor with enough newspaper under it so I did not ruin the carpet. The Rainbow itself was the only part that was painted in a different medium - acrylic. I realize in the long run that using that medium for the biggest part of the painting made the rainbow look a bit one dimensional, yet it was the other elements of the painting that did not effect the integrity of the final product.

As I painted, I had my headphones on so I would not disturb the sibling or parental units in the house. I not only listened to RISING, but to any one of the other Rainbow LP's that became part of my collection in the months to follow. I had to be so careful not to get paint on them as I was turning the record(s) over on my turntable.

As you could see from the picture I took of this painting in August 1985; I was really quite proud of my work. I unfortunately made my own mother cry as I gave this away to the guy who turned me on to this group in the first place. You know, to this day, I really don't know if he still possesses the painting you see on this website, so having a snapshot of this painting is the only memory I can take with me and share with all of you now.

So as I look back on this today, I feel the 'guy' for whom I cared about really did give me a valuable gift as well; and that was the gift of enabling me to choose to listen to some really awe inspiring music, by one incredible band - Rainbow. RISING the album, CD, what have you, is today still an amazing piece of work, both inside and out. Just so you know, my favorite song on that album is 'A Light in the Black'.

Cheers, my fellow Rainbow Fans - and thank you Frans for posting this story of my painting on your site.

Jules Mills