Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Tendrils, tentacles and other twining structures

Apologies all for blog absence. Reasons being: demands of 2 'day-jobs' which, lately have demanded out of hours meetings and other shenanigans. Also, after 6 weeks of sleeplessness and wanton irrepressible energy I got snared by the doc and put back on the zombie pills. Hence, any spare time has been spent face down in floor/sofa/duvet! Whatever! Here's yesterday's 'training day' doodle. It began with the 2 fish - which now I don't like that much. Plant forms come all too easy. I need to practice drawing creatures. I don't tend to colour my line drawings but this one my daughter helped me with. She's 11.
The scan (above) is a bit shabby - consequence of doodling in notepads with other shit showing through the back. Below is a photo.
Did a quick journal entry at the weekend. These pages were lovely before I defaced them with script. I layered paint and tissue paper over gesso. Lots of subtle pinks and mauves until black marker pen came along and rode rough shod over the parchment.

Photo vs scan (pages stitched together in photo-shop. Can't seem to get it so you can click and enlarge) - I'm still not sure which works best...

Took the girls to a 'den-weaving' event Saturday. Lovely afternoon spent cocooning ourselves with plastic bags and shredded curtain!

I promise this blog will properly take-off in a month's time - when I'm down to a 2-workday week and either habituated to or rejected the crappy meds!

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Tuesday = 'Advice worker' training/doodling day

Only managed a couple of sneaky ones under the desk today. Rubbish scan - crappy copy of a crappy copy of a copy of a c...!

Monday, 15 June 2009

Botanicals #2

Lathyrus tuberosa (tuberous pea)

Friday, 12 June 2009

Hey Doll-face!

I didn't sleep for 3 nights on the trot at the dog-end of may. Sunday afternoon was gorgeous and sultry. We sat in the yard, my daughter and I, pasting shreds of the weekend paper into our sketchbooks. Found a drawer full of old car spray-paints and an alphabet stencil from nursery school, expounded on the joy of layering - the thrill of the serendipitous encounter of disparate elements. (She wasn't much interested in theory).

During those thin, febrile pseudo-sleeps I've been having of late, I find myself pursued by masked characters. I discover severed heads and body-parts in the sod - panic - attempt to alert the 'authorities', and then find myself mocked by a snickering crowd and a tribe of blandly smirking manikins.

I'm trying to live a regular life - follow the rules and conventions. But these little fuckers are marching through my brain by night and tapping on the panes by day.

I'd just like to know why.

What do they want?


I picked up this little succulant in my local florist's. It took 6 days to paint (during 'out of work' hours). Some florist-shop workers are overwhelmingly interested when I tell them I'm after something to paint; others just look bored and are clearly waiting for me to stop fingering their blooms and get out the shop. This one was definately of the latter species.

Echeveria peacockii: Native to Mexico, it begins life as a dumpy little rosette, expands, then puts out two long tendrils upon which are borne small, waxy orange-pink flowers. The leaves and stems are covered with a glaucous bloom that rubs at a touch. This characteristic is tricky to paint in watercolour & I had to keep the washes very dilute. It was a nice excuse to use the more 'gay' pigment range - viridian, transparent yellow and opera-rose after a term restricting my students to a traditional, sobre palette.

Just as soon as I'd laid the final brush-stroke, my daughter came in and exclaimed, "Ooh that's pretty", as she reached across and touched the left flower spike. The stem promptly snapped of at the knee! A sure sign that the job was done.

The scan doesn't really do it justice even though I've tweaked the colours and contrast a little but it appears very low-definition compared to the sharpness of th original.

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Friday, 5 June 2009

The Triumph of Pan

Nicolas Poussin 1636

Pablo Picasso 1944

kitchensink 2008