095:365 Memory of an African Violet

095:365 Memory of an African Violet

“Tears, idle tears, I know not what they mean,
Tears from the depths of some devine despair
Rise in the heart, and gather to the eyes,
In looking on the happy autumn fields,
And thinking of the days that are no more.”
― Alfred Tennyson

Today nostalgia washes over me, both happiness and sadness. The double edged sword of being in the place one grew up is that there are so many people and places that one knows intimately. One knows how to get around but one also knows what has been around.

This is a memory of a drawing I used to do as a child. A one liner of muscle memory and imagination that nobody but me remembers. Today felt like that somehow.

094:365 Emergence

094:365 Emergence

Sleep has been evasive this week so far, so what started out as an effort at a freestyle crocus (with the intention of it looking realistic but invented) turned into this wild sprouting dance.

Not sure what it means yet. I’ll have to look again tomorrow, but there are miles to go before I sleep.

093:365 Sunset

093:365 Sunset

Today a colorful motif that might make part of a neat textile pattern. Maybe tomorrow I’ll have time to go do some more Spoonflower designs!

This is just playing with color and lines.

Too tired right now for more writing. Though I do better at doing these in the morning, with more effort and better results devoted to them, there is something nice about finishing the day with a few focused thoughts while Gracie sits next to me and purrs.

090:365 White & Purple Crocus

090:365 White & Purple Crocus

When I was a kid, I loved oil pastels. I’d draw bright flowers, beautiful hillsides, and starry nights. There were drawings I’d do over and over, never exactly the same, but following the same formal constraints. Hill just so, sun or moon with these pastel-marks.

As a grown artist, I look back on those drawings with both fondness and chagrin.

Inspiration White & Purple Crocus

On the one hand, they were familiar forms that helped me perfect my technique. Drafts, as it were, that developed into skill with mark-making, composition, and iconography.

On the other, they like banal over-studied forms that stopped investigating new meaning.

We artists must constantly balance the need to investigate new horizons with the desire to connect with our audience. Many of the wild drawings I did in Madrid, which to me are emotional investigative storms on A3 paper, seem like decorative art to the viewer, while my repeated drawings of Gracie, with different techniques and stories, seem like developed work to the viewer.

It is necessary to repeat. It is necessary to connect. It is necessary to delve.

These necessities are why there are multiple strains of work that show up as I continue through this project.

None of this is really about the crocus drawing above. It represents another investigation into macro perspective beauty through the medium of paper and pastel instead of camera and pixels. It is not the end of developing technique.

One reason I like doing macro-photography is because it satisfies my need to delve and look at abstract form while still remaining approachable to the viewer, and it is fun to repeat the technique and change the angle to fit in with my body of work because it involves looking so close that there are always new things to see.

Spring flowers are so pretty. Took a bunch of photos today of what’s sprouting in the yard. Expect more flowers, banal though they may be.