Welcome To The Kingdom Of Fife



Hello, with this new blog, I hope to showcase my artwork and my portfolio.

Malcolm M. Fife


Even More Self-Portraits

I do not think that I have drawn many self-portraits in hats. That is something I hope to remedy with these two portraits here: one in a homburg and one in a pancake cap.


Black and white charcoal on toned paper. 9 in. x 12 in. 2019.


Black and white charcoal on toned paper. 9 in. x 12 in. 2019.

Some Poetry

In addition to drawing, I also write verse to pass the time. So far people have liked the poems that I have showed them, so now I will share some of them (the poems I mean) with you. I hope you will enjoy them.


The Burden of the Dead and Obsolete

Designed more than one hundred years ago,
A steady drip of water to make gas
To help the blackened miners down below.
A rusty relic now, its time is passed.
I have three carbide lamps upon my desk.
Three brothers of a long forgotten breed,
Who aided men who worked in mines or caves
And gave them safety on their darkest days.
I feel that it is an important task
To preserve the things we once did need,
Though people now use new electric light.
Each region of the night is brightly lit.
Though burning brightly now, yes very bright,
Has anyone considered it may quit?

I have not come up with a title for this one yet.

My mother, my father, and I
Used to pass time by
When stuck at a light that was red
Make words from the car just ahead.

“RBL,” the licence plate said,
“Rebel,” said Todd before scratching his head.
“Wait,” said I, “I was going to say
That that word ought to be Rabelais!”

“GJW,” the licence plate read,
“George John Washington,” my mother said.
“Washington, really? You’re goofy,” said I,
“Wait just a minute and let me just try.”

I pondered and pondered, and just could not think
Of anything…
…and I still can’t think!

A Lament Upon the Neckwear of the Age

The noble necktie first appeared
To cover that which men most feared;
It was scandal for someone who
Appeared abroad, shirtfront in view.

Who could guess that some neckties would
For a short time be wrought of wood?
Horace Walpole, for a lark,
Had his necktie made out of bark!

1900 had the fashion
For which I have an adoring passion!
Long and thin or short and wide.
That was all, and none pre-tied!

The neckties now are fairly botched,
For they accentuate the wearer’s crotch!
To-day’s fashion is a dump,
As is shown by Donald Trump!

The Cricket

I heard a cricket through the storm.
Its chirping, to me, seemed quite plain,
Through the crashing of the thunder
And also splashing of the rain.

Quite dry and safe inside was I,
Reclining comfortably in bed.
While in the cold the cricket stayed,
On cushions I reclined my head.



Here are a few of my self-portraits I have done in the past year or two. As you can see, I am using my art to transport myself back into the time periods that I adore. It is a form of wish fulfillment, I guess.


Self-portrait in the style of Egon Schiele (Colored pencil and watercolor on paper. 2015.)


Folk art self-portrait (Oil on canvas board. 2016.)


Self-Portrait in the 1840’s (study for “Surrealist Self-Portrait.” India ink over graphite on paper. 2016.)



Self-Portrait in cloth cap (1920’s) (Graphite on paper. 2017.)


Self-portrait, June 3rd, 1817 (Graphite on paper. 2017.)


Self-Portrait, June 7th, 1917 (Graphite on paper. 2017.)



My Surrealist Art


I enjoy Surrealism.

I might even say that it is my favorite artistic movement. Surrealism has influenced many of my drawings and paintings and even my outlook on life.

Here are some of my best Surrealist paintings.



Satan Has Given Up Building Bridges (2016) Acrylic on paper.

So far this is my only abstract painting. It was inspired by the works of the Surrealist painter Yves Tanguy and the poem A Cooking Egg by T. S. Eliot. (My painting was originally titled The Red-Eyed Scavengers are Creeping after a line from the poem. You can see the red eye at the top center of the paining.)

IMG_5073A fragment from the painting The Was that Never Man (2016) Acrylic on paper.

This work was heavily influenced by the Italian Metaphysical-painter Giorgio de Chirico. The title comes from an episode of The Goon Show, a 1950’s BBC radio comedy show which was very surreal. The episode was “The Man that never Was,” however, once during the show it was referred to as The Was that Never Man. The statue that appears in the painting is a representation, from memory, of the statue of Henry Hardin Cherry on the campus of Western Kentucky University in front of Cherry Hall.





Pardon Me While I Fly the Grand Piano (No More Scones) (2017) Watercolor.

This Surrealist self-portrait was inspired by my love for the 19th century. The landscape in the background comes from a dream I had.