Hooray! The Tree of Life...or the version the kids made anyways, is all done. Feels good. Sent them home with a small version of tree of life (mixed media), a Klimt-style self portrait, modeling clay 'stamps' and an embellished box. Not too shabby for four days, only one hour of contact time per day, eh?
As for my own hands drawing a tree...no time today. My 'art' for today will have to be getting everything to fit in my suitcase....which is pretty hard to do.
Next post…should be either en route to or from California…and you can bet there is going to be some serious sketching on the plane!
I admit it. I abandoned my trees. Well, kind of. I did take a break from the 18x24 trees last night working on two TOP SECRET watercolors (sounds so much more important when you put it in all caps)…and today, another day of somewhat tree-abandon. I moved my big ol’ sketch pad aside in favor of a nifty 12x12 sketchpad…10 sheets, how could I resist? And I am a sucker for a square format, but I digress. So I drew 10 quick trees, spent about an hour and a half. I also put down the Sharpie in favor of a black Faber Castell PITT artist Pen (didn’t do all caps for a special reason, that is just how it is written on the pen.) I love this pen. It really glides on the paper, almost felt like I was painting without the pesky re-wetting of the brush. Not sure what will become of these 12x12 trees…maybe some collage work. It was nice to take a break from my series for some quick drawings on a smaller scale.
Speaking of collage, the ‘Tree of Life’ is really coming along. The kids started to add their leftover pattern scraps (we can’t let a good pattern go to waste now can we?) and once we used all that up I started to fill in the extra space with some gold acrylic…I can’t wait to see what happens tomorrow when we start stamping it with modeling clay stamps and adding some sparkle. So sad that I am leaving the ‘Masters of Motif’ week one day early but…’California Waiting’…excuse me, now I have to go and listen to that song…
Ummmm….before I go…30 trees before we leave for the west coast?! I don’t know…might have to finish them when I get back…to be continued.
...workin' on some top secret 'commissions'... will update tomorrow with more progress on the trees...
…so this week is ‘Masters of Motif’ week at art camp…looks I will focus on Klimt, which is awesome because it is a great warm-up for me each day to come home and work on my tree(s). And I am working half days...so that is great because I have more time, more daylight, to draw. Looks like it will be a good week.
I took some pictures today showing the large group project; the kids will be filling in the swirly tree with different patterns and designs and then adding embellishments. I was fortunate to find a REALLY BIG piece of paper to do the drawing on…good find. Will post the final picture later in the week.
When I came home today I started working on the next tree, number seventeen. Still working with the ‘macaroni hair’ and figurative elements. Two ladies showed up in this drawing. After looking at it, I see where it could be viewed as two images of the same figure. I keep thinking about how trees and natural forms are so easy to intertwine with the female form. The lines, the shapes…they just go together for me. Not sure if this will be the only tree for today or if I will come back to the table tonight and draw some more…
Notes on Image: (Left)) Me, drawing the large-scale tree, (Middle) Kilmt, Tree of Life, (Right) Channeling my inner Rosie(Bottom) Meet tree #17
…and it is South Florida, so am I surprised that it is raining? No. Summer is just getting in full swing, I know about the 4:00 rain showers…but this is different. Big ol’ rainstorm, complete with lightening and such. Looks like it is parked right over us…perfect time to...you guessed it- draw. When I look at tree number sixteen I can see the connections to my reading material yesterday…trying to emulate Mucha’s ‘macaroni hair’. This is the first of the series where I deviated from the format; I actually did some drawing in pencil, and then went on top of it with the Sharpie. I think that the face in this drawing works a little better; it is more a part of the tree and the background than the faces that show up in the previous drawings, so I feel like I am on to something there. Still working on that stylized hair, Mr. Mucha is a hard act to follow indeed. I would like to try and move the face away from the center…what if it was actually in the background? What if there was more than one…what if….
So that is the tree for today. Number sixteen. Guess I might need to spend the rest of the night doing more mundane things, like laundry and such. Tomorrow and the rest of the week…more trees…hidden faces…intertwined sinuous lines….
...Fifteen trees. I surpassed my original goal of ten and now I am half way to my new goal of fifteen. (see slideshow, above) I photographed what I have so far, I can see where some days I focused my attention on the tree, sometimes on the background…just depending on my mood and perhaps what I was listening to on my IPod. This is just preliminary drawing on all of these; I will go back into each one later and add more details, color, etc. For now, just enjoying making black marks on a brand new piece of paper. It is daunting (and exciting) to see that expanse of white and make that first mark.
Besides completing the fifteenth tree today, I also took some time to open a book on Mucha and just sit and read. To pour over the pictures, to try and expand my knowledge base. Klimt and Mucha are two artists that I admire, but how much do I really know about them? I know a little, I need to know more. So…I just sat and read, looked. I have all of these art books, I get so excited and I buy them. Sometimes I look at them all the way; sometimes I just shelve them, like some treasure waiting for a time to be explored. And I don’t always take the time to do just that. So this summer, this fabulous summer, I am going to read every book that I own related to Art Nouveau, Gustav Klimt and Alphonse Mucha. When I am done reading them I am going to go through them again and sketch and make notes. I am going to increase my vocabulary and knowledge of these artists and their work, and figure out the connections to my own art.
Tomorrow, tree number sixteen awaits. Tree number sixteen, now just a thought, to be put on paper tomorrow, marks to be made.
Special thanks to my husband for picking the music for the in-progress slideshow. (Cat Stevens, The Wind)
...by my calculations... twelve. You can get twelve 18x24 drawings from a single Sharpie. Now, it is by no means used up. I could probably put the lid on, forget this marker in some place where forgotten markers go... and maybe I will. Maybe it has some marks left to make. But in my mind I keep hearing a crit from many years back...a fellow student had some drawings up on 'the wall'' (ECU art folks, I know you feel me on this)...anyways, the drawings were pretty good...but the marker was running out. And it was hard to really appreciate the drawings due to this defect. My professor put it simply...'why didn't you just get another marker?' Wow. What a simple solution. So in my mind I am thinking, if it is worth putting on paper, which it feels like it is... might as well give the marker a rest and find a fresh one.
As for the fate of this marker...it may live to draw another day. Think I will take a rest for a few hours, twelve trees feels pretty good. I may put them together in a time-release style slide show to share, I see that some shapes are constant, patterns are coming and going...I even had a figurative element pop up. I wonder where that came from, heehee...
So twelve for now. I hope for fifteen tomorrow and then just keep drawing til I run out of paper. It is a pretty simple plan, really. What isn't so simple...trying to figure out what to do with all my trees...paint? collage? Those are thoughts for another day. Certainly not today. Today is for taking a moment of silence for this beloved marker. Thank you marker, you helped me a great deal and I hope to work with you again on a future drawing. (moment of silence...pause....)
....so, five drawings into this undertaking...Klimt's trees...my trees...my obsession with curvilinear line and spiral motif...not sure what to call it but it has been fun. Two days, five drawings. (...has it been only two days?) Seeing what patterns get repeated, which ones fall to the wayside...what happens with the background...
On my lunch break at my art camp today i was drawing and a little girl came and sat beside me and was really interested in what I was doing. Man, I tell you- explaining yourself to a seven year old is right up there with a proper art critique...I explain, she asks why...I give an explanation, she asks why...and repeat. (Ray Elmore would be proud) She asked if she could color a tree and I said no, and then thought about it...maybe? Why should my trees be so precious that I can't share them with a seven year old? So that gave me an idea...will wait to elaborate on that.
For now, I have five 18x24 marker drawings full of whimsy. A seven year old likes them. I like them. No color yet, but I will worry about that later...gotta get this drawing out of my hands and onto some paper... I might just keep drawing til the pad of paper is empty. We'll see. Better get to work...got a seven year old art critic to answer to tomorrow, and she wants to see some progress...
...decided today would be a good day to try out the 'new' table. Per usual, not sure where I am going...think I am just going to look at Klimt's trees (which I love) and just doodle...see what happens. I am going to commit to ten 18x24 drawings....what happens next? Not sure. Will update with this series as I get more finished...
So one of my goals has been to create a dedicated space for work. I had an easel set up in the kitchen, tons of light, space to move around...but nothing for drawing or beading. To tell you the truth I haven't really worked on a drawing in a while, besides my sketches...and drawing in my sketchbook is just...different. There is something unique to the experience of sitting down with a large piece of white paper and just...drawing. Well, now I think I have got a good area set up. I moved the easel over by the sliding glass doors, still plenty of light. And I moved the table I was using for my computer work area in front of the kitchen window, got another table to replace that one. I wasn't sure what John would think of it...he was sleeping on Sunday when I made the trip to Target for the replacement table and then came back and started rearranging. Lucky for me he understands my need for space to create. Now...just gotta start something...gulp....