Well, it’s the end of my month off from the dailies, and I kind of missed them. But I’ve been busy making other art, never fear! I made a ridiculous number of little collages in the past week, which I will share with you here.
The two above are on 9″ x 12″ paper. I love how collage can engage playful intuition. I work on several at the same time, and think that I’m just responding to line and color, but then often find that they have drawn forth a little story or vignette.
This and the ones that follow are all smaller, about 4″ x 5″. They feel like curious little peeks into dreams or half-baked ideas.
I hope you found these enjoyable. I return to daily drawings tomorrow, if all goes as planned! Happy March!
February break continues. I’m not even painting lately, because it’s time for the February collage break. I should be able to post a few of those soon, they’re still in progress.
Meanwhile, here’s another character from the family DnD game. Meet Gertie Sable, a rock gnome with magical abilities. She’s irrepressibly curious and outgoing, and stowed away on the ill-fated voyage with the help of Demanda, who saw her as a potential friend and willing minion.
I really don’t enjoy making art digitally; I already spend too much time sitting at a computer. But for these game tokens, I’ve started filling in the backgrounds with fast and crappy digital brushwork. It’s possible I’ll learn how to use some of these tools just out of convenience!
In the absence of daily drawings, here’s a sample of what I’ve been playing with. These are portraits of characters in my current Dungeons and Dragons campaign. The above, Balance, is a Tiefling mercenary. Below, my character Demanda Cooper, a half orc barbarian, raised by her human mother who was determined that she would be a proper society lady.
There are a lot of people making great renderings of DnD characters, I am rather in awe of the art that’s out there. I present my efforts in the spirit of humble amusement.
It’s actually an update of 13 September 2020, you can go into the archive to see what it looked like when I originally posted it.
I am painting every day still, but it is taking some time to finish things out to my satisfaction. But it’s interesting to me to see what happens when I take the time to push them further. Where is the line between ‘done’ and ‘overworked’? The line between ‘fresh’ and ‘lazy’?
Oh and I’m taking studio time to also do non-painting projects. Maybe I’ll post some of those on the days between finished paintings…stand by!
This will be the last Daily for a while; I’m taking a break so I can focus on finishing other studio projects that have been piling up for months. I will post in February whenever I have something completed, which will hopefully be almost daily! My plan is to resume the Dailies in March, or when I’m caught up, whichever comes first.
February is Collage Party month! This year due to COVID-19 I won’t be having my usual in-studio gathering. Instead, I’ll host a zoom meet-up toward the end of the month, so anybody who wants to join in can show and talk about their work. Send me a message if you’re interested, and I’ll send you an invitation when the time comes!
I started this practice and this blog with intentionality, so if I change the practice I would like it to be equally intentional. So I’ve made a decision to continue making and posting dailies for the rest of January. Starting Feb 1, I will take a break from the dailies to finish that backlog of paintings that have been staring at me waiting to be finished to my satisfaction. I’ll continue to post, daily or nearly so, showing the finished pieces as they come. Once that’s cleared out, I expect to resume making and posting daily drawing/paintings.
Many thanks to everyone who follows me and supports my art, whether materially or with kind or amusing words. I can never properly express how important that has been in helping me pursue what I’ve really wanted to be able to do for most of my life, but didn’t think it was OK to spend all that time and money on it.
For anyone reading this, I hope you too get a chance to follow your dreams, and a web of community that helps and encourages you in doing it.
Sometimes a drawing or painting just won’t work, and I don’t have the patience to pull anything satisfying out of it. So for today. Muddy colors, marks increasing in impatience with each added layer. I would be embarrassed to show this to anyone, but the ‘rules’ of my daily practice say I show whatever I did in my studio time. So let this please be encouragement for you to not get hung up on perfection every time, to sometimes just go ahead and make a mess, and let that be your practice for that day. There will be other days. And who’s to say I didn’t learn anything by letting myself fail?
I keep struggling with the idea that making pictures just for the sheer enjoyment of it is selfish and useless or pointless. I don’t want to compare my art to others on some scale of accomplishment or value; that would just make me stop.
There are so many artists who are tremendously talented and driven, making beautiful and meaningful works. By comparison I am really quite lazy. I do what interests me, and put off doing what seems challenging. I tend to be in my studio at the end of the day, often with a beer in hand, and some stupid tv show playing in the background, and I give myself an hour or three just to play.
I am massively privileged to be able to do this, without having to worry about whether I can earn any money with my art. But I firmly believe that everyone should be able to have time to do art or music or dance, or whatever creative endeavor feeds them, without having to worry about their basic needs getting met.
As I hurried to get this drawing to a state of resolution that satisfied me before I needed to sleep, I realized that I miss working on drawings/paintings for longer than one sitting in one day. I haven’t had that feeling often in the 10+ years of this project, so I paid attention to it.
I have done a number of side projects, mostly 3-D involving sticks and/or string, but very few more ambitious paintings. I don’t want to stop the daily drawings; they hold an important place for me. But maybe it’s time for me to consider ways of making space for daily work on bigger commitments.
That may mean time-limiting the daily drawings, or posting them as sketches, or posting work in progress. I’m not sure yet, but it seems appropriate to be thinking about this in the time of the year for planning gardens, shopping for and starting seeds.
I started posting my daily drawings for the sake of accountability. I post this intention for the same reason; time will tell if it bears fruit.