It’s no mystery to long-time readers and people who know me that I use art to centre and calm myself. All the things that happen around me flow through my pens to evoke patterns and flows. Sometimes there are creatures and more figurative elements, and sometimes it is a lot more abstract.
A common theme is one of disparate elements flowing into and through each other. There are knots and reflections, sinuous morphology and interlocking pieces. Tension and worry tends to result in spikes, while calmer emotions bring curves and loops.
In a very real sense, a whole page of my sketchpad will reflect the ebbs and flows of my mind and emotions across a period of time.
Some of these pieces get thrown away when done on scrap paper or consigned to collections that rarely see air. Others I’m actually quite happy with, especially if there’s something innovative or new that has emerged in terms of technique or detail. These are details from this week or so’s decompression work
I’m still drawing all the time – it’s what I do to focus and distract with equal fervour and I now have staff who use the sight of my many doodles as sketches to recognise that I’m based at a given location at any time. (People who have worked elsewhere with me over many decades will know that one)
I’m doing a lot of them at the moment, which on the creative side is wonderful, as I’m pushing some new techniques and composition styles that I think are really broadening my confidence.
And yet the perfectionist in me still sees every flaw and I throw most of them away. Furthermore that then darkens my mood – which isn’t great on days like today where I’m drawing as a distraction because my head is not in a fantastic place.
Oh well. Two steps forward, one step back and all that. I am at least filling my sketchbooks with good material and studies for bigger projects down the line – and it’ll soon be Christmas and a chance to get the whole polycule back in one place again
I seem to be doing more iconic than figurative art at this point – perhaps it’s a reaction to the prompts or the speed that I’m taking them. I’m trying not to overthink the pieces, even though there are careful reasons behind most of them.
I could have gone with highly detailed pieces for both of these, but it feels like I would have been drawing from the head rather than the gut, which is where the best (to my eyes) pieces come from.
Day Fifteen had #weak as it’s prompt. It was tempting to do.something dramatic or portentous, but I was in a whimsical mood and so this doodle of someone struggling to move a helium balloon popped up. It’s not the most detailed picture in the world, and the arm positioning is problematic, but I think it embodies the prompt with a bit of a wink, and tongue firmly in cheek.
Day Sixteen gave us #angular. I did think of just doing one of my spiky constructionist pieces consisting purely of random edged pieces, but I overheard someone getting the word angel confused with angle. So I couldn’t resist poking fun and illustrating both at the same time. An angular angel against a background of angles – I may even revisit this at some point, I feel there’s more mischief to be accomplished here.