Categories
art drawing

words and drawings

Today trying out words and drawings together.

I’m quite hopeful about this, these are three test pieces that I made with some small drawings that were lying on the workbench – I’ve written them with moveable-type letterpress letters that I’ve borrowed.

You can see the metal moveable-type in the picture. You probably have seen these – they are little metal blocks with a reversed letter on one end which used to be used for printing books and magazines, by setting them out into blocks (trays) and then inking and passing through a printing press.

I printed from the blocks directly and by hand, by coating them first with oil-based relief printing ink. Just the smell of print-making ink makes it a good day for me.

Categories
artists books painting

night desk

Just spending a moment tonight looking through what I have made earier today, and wondering where to start next tomorrow. (Answer – one thing at a time, one day at a time, start with colour mixing.)

Aims for tomorrow and the week:

To explore. To step outside of comfortable. To not be precious. To not hold on to things. To step towards my audience. To begin. To carry through. To immerse myself in the work. To enjoy the process.

Categories
artists books drawing

drawing with card

Drawing doesn’t have to be on paper, it can be with paper – or today with card and objects.

I don’t have a clear idea where I am going, but I’m wanting to experiment with some artist-book forms, and so I feel like I need to play with shapes, and to bypass my mind and think some things through with directly with my hands. I’m just making a beginning by playing with offcuts of card on my workbench.

Categories
light photography

more small framing experiments

a few more small experiments this evening
gusty wind, light rain and a strange glow over the sea

Categories
drawing painting

acorns

drawing my pile of acorns today, before I plant them…

Categories
art drawing

more drawing

Doing some work on my large drawing today, the one based on ripples in water.

I’ve added egg tempera paint, made with egg yolk, pigment and water – a most magical substance with a beautiful surface and shine. Just mixing it is such a pleasure!

Categories
art drawing

on drawing

I’ve been sitting at my desk for a lot of today, finding words about hope, and continuing with the reading that I am doing about the work of Joseph Beuys.

Sitting at my desk with my back to the large drawing I’ve started and not giving it any thought. It is behind me because I had nailed the paper to the only possible wall, right behind my desk. Charcoal dust all over the floor and the soles of my feet, all over the dog and the piles of books. Its not lovely‚Ķ

And, turning around, it has to be said that overall this drawing is not pleasing to me. I am speaking about this here, in order to be honest with myself, and to express to myself, in front of you, that sometimes things look very difficult and messy, and there is no certainty at all that they will mean or be anything useful. And this is difficult. One becomes invested in a work, in a certain outcome. Or worse, having embarked on something without being able to see a way clear, one starts to lose faith that there is a way clear, or that the journey is justified at all.

I have no idea where I am going with this drawing. There are some things that are good about it, an energy and a rhythm in places. I am starting to imagine ways that it will become material that I can turn into a book, or perhaps the inside of a box. But I also feel certain that it will need more work first. More attention. And the possibility remains that it might never be useful at all.

Which reminds me that in the course of my research today, I did read Joseph Beuys in conversation on the process of creating, saying something that I found interesting about quality, and mistakes:

“So the criteria for something …. as to its quality, can again really only be discussed in direct relation to something, by circling around it a thousand times, looking at it and trying different things out. Above all, it becomes interesting when you’ve completed something and think it’s perfect; and then suddenly see that in fact it’s the stupidest thing you’ve ever done. And then you have to rework it, in other words, correct it, and that’s particularly difficult. But it also has the enormous advantage that only now can you draw something out of it which never occurred to you as a possibility before, because it wasn’t at all visible. The mistake one makes in the first attempt can turn out to be an extraordinary gift as far as the work is concerned….. One learns an enormous amount from mistakes in particular, as long as one doesn’t tire too easily and say: Oh no, it’s no good – I’ll leave it and start something new. If one says: This mistake is something that I’m not just going to leave as it is, but I’ll make something of this mistake, which is much better than I originally envisaged…”

(From the book ‘What is Art’, Conversation with Joseph Beuys. Edited with essays by Volker Harlan, 2004).

Categories
art painting

painting a pumpkin

Painting a pumpkin today with the lovely Gwendraeth Arts Lab on-line group.

Categories
art painting

scroll forms, watercolour

Making maquettes of scroll forms in watercolour this evening – working from memories of making the short film yesterday.

Categories
art

three small joys