Thursday 18 October 2007
So far I haven't drawn any identical envelopes but obviously, I have definite themes and styles. I know that's unavoidable and I don't object to it. So why do I feel so guilty about my love of ovals and my tendency to return to them again and again?
Perhaps I should listen to Edith Wharton who said: "Another unsettling element in modern art is that common symptom of immaturity, the dread of doing what has been done before." Mind you, she also said, "Beware of monotony; it's the mother of all the deadly sins." How wide or deep you plough your furrow has always been a pressing question for artists - are you exploring something richly and deeply or just in a rut?
Posted: 9.36pm on 3.10.07
There's been a postal strike in the UK recently. I was able to carry on my daily posting but it messed up the return of the envelopes for several weeks - I didn't get any envelopes at all for about a week and then they all came back in the wrong order as the Royal Mail tried to clear that backlog. During this time, I realised that one of my unspoken rules is that I have to wait until they're all in the right order before I can scan and blog the envelopes. This makes me wonder what I'd do if they lost one - how long would I wait before I admitted defeat and continued scanning and blogging the subsequent envelopes?
Posted: 11.03pm on 2.10.07
There's something very bone-like about this form. I've always loved drawing bones: as a teenager, I used to go to the museum in Chamber Street in Edinburgh to draw the stuffed animals and skeletons. I learnt a lot about drawing anatomy there, I drew bones long before I ever did proper life drawing.
Posted: 11.46pm on 30.9.07
Wednesday 10 October 2007
Unlike the last envelope, this drawing is so elegant in its simplicity that it's easy to love. But for me there's a dark side too because it reminds me of childhood walks in waist-high bracken and the attendant fear of getting sheep ticks. Looking back, it's clear that nature frightened me quite a lot as a child - at least the insect part did - so it's quite amusing that I'm so inspired by it now. All those endless childhood nature hikes obviously left their mark.
Posted: 10.23pm on 27.9.07
It's very unusual for me to draw an envelope just in pencil, without any ink at all but I like the pale ghostliness that it gives here. I probably ought to work this way more often - perhaps I should even try ordinary pencil on the envelopes, I've been quite resistant to the idea because I'm afraid it would smudge badly but maybe that's OK. Maybe it's more than that, maybe I'm a little bit intimidated by pencil - it does seem a lot like 'real drawing' and that thought still scares me a little.
Posted: 8.26pm on 25.9.07
Sunday 7 October 2007
My partner suggested I used some yellow on the little ovals. I was a bit dubious, yellow is a colour that I very rarely use but he was right, it does lift the drawing. It reminded me that I still need to be braver about my colour choices.
Posted: 11.40pm on 18.9.07
I was very into the blackness of the ink in this drawing. I drew the centres first but felt they were lacking something so I surrounded them with black ink from the Pentel Colour Brush. That tool is hopeless for fine work but great for laying down big areas of ink - I may have to get a couple of coloured ones.
Posted: 10.16pm on 17.9.07