March 28, 2010

Spring inspiration

Yellow Holly (b&w)

A day before the official first day of spring, my friend and I sat down on a Coal Harbour bench after a refreshing, sunlit bike ride around the seawall. He pulled out a sketchbook and pen and started sketching out as many sights as possible, as quickly as possible. That strategy, while energizing and capable of branding more visual memories, is not one I frequently employ. In fact, I hadn’t done any kind of artistic sketching for months — not since the fall when my visiting nieces, who are nuts about drawing, inspired participation. So when he tore a sheet from his sketchbook and handed it to me with a pen and a book for my lap, I felt a blushing hesitation, a brief resistance. An unfamiliarity with the drawing tool. Overcome that I was left just with deciding what to draw.

There was a large holly with yellow berries just ahead of me that provided the detail to which I’m addicted. I like to draw subjects as close to their form as possible, so botanical drawings are quite ideal, providing intricate and random shapes. I had forgotten this pleasure, as I had forgotten how much I enjoy capturing light and shadow (as much as I do looking at it). It took me a minute to get back into the swing of it, to have some patience and see it as a relaxing exercise with a tangible outcome. It’s so easy to just take photographs and yet if I remember anything vividly it’s the image of that holly, in full colour, not the pansies and daffodils I photographed two days later. That sure makes one think about the media we use to write memories.

Digital scan converted to greyscale from original blue ink.

July 21, 2008

The Urge to Purge / A History of Drawing

Portrait of a woman

Before writing this post it occurred to me that I may not have the kind of readership that would be interested in a post like this. I’m of course aware that blog readership evolves on a mutual network, but I realised that almost all the blogs I read are on sustainability, climate change, transportation, and green lifestyles. So it became apparent, when I still had the desire to write about it, that I just love to write! While a month’s absence from blogging doesn’t appear to correlate, I think I just needed the equation time + something to get excited about = passion –> creativity. Well, it must have hit a backlog because now I have a couple on a waitlist here waiting to be written! (While I think of it, I should mention that Monday lunch blog posts fizzled in the last few weeks because I haven’t been working.) In this post I anticipate some of you will find issues and feelings to which you can relate. If you’ve grown up, moved out, and even moved back in, you’ll understand!

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