Tackling another feline. This one is much bigger with more fur. As usual I have no plan of attack. I’ll probably stare at this base drawing for a couple of days just visualizing how I would like for it to look before I get brave enough to lay a drop of ink on it. I’ve been doing pointillism for years yet I still and will probably always get nervous whenever I start inking a new drawing.
It’s been a while since the last time I tackled a drawing of this majestic creature. I think elephants translate well into pen and ink drawings as far as subject matter goes. I particularly like the challenge of trying to get that realistic look with all the wrinkles and folds presented in this beautiful creature’s skin. But even at the size of a baseball card, an unimaginable amount of dots have already gone into this. It has taken 12 hours spread over three days just to fill in the background. Still though, I always enjoy the outcome of a good pen and ink piece of elephants. Hoping this turns out the way I imagine it.
Some quick bunny sketches. I’m still grappling with my apprehension but I’m feeling much better about rabbits now. Thank you Val for suggesting that I take a look at baby rabbits. They’re so much more adorable and less creepy looking to me. With that said bunnies seem to be a good subject for the first day of Spring. 😊
Sometimes I forget that I’m a manifestation of Nature, that Earth is my mother and I am bound to her for subsistence. I get caught up in this digital universe called the Internet, living vicariously far too much through digital imagery on machines coded in symbols, letters and numbers that I can neither touch, eat nor breath. I feel my spirit being drawn more towards depicting more animals, flowers and landscapes in my work as a way to reconnect and remind myself that the world does not exist in machines. I feel less focused on human forms and more interested in the rest of the living things that inhabit this planet.
I’ve never stippled fur before so I decided to dip my pen in it with my current ACEO that’s in progress, “Panda”. At first I wanted to do some adorable kittens but I found that to be a bit overwhelming for a first time, so I went with a panda, which seemed a bit more manageable. Since I’m now using smaller nibbed pens I’ve added a magnifying glass to my small arsenal tools and so far, it’s turning out to be my secret weapon for developing a more even layer of ink and realistic look to my work. It’s amazing how small adjustments can have such major effects.
“With all of the darkness in our world we need artists creating joyful things just as much as those helping to shape and change culture for the better.” ~ Shirley Jackson
Sometimes it slips my mind to enjoy the simple things in life. I have to remind myself things that may often be called “frivolous trifles” have their place in the world too. It’s taken me a while to realize that everything doesn’t need to be profound, that a message doesn’t always have to be made and that my work can be enjoyed for simply being. I once read that art should express more than just beauty. Although that statement has stuck with me, feeding a mild grade angst, I’m left wondering what’s so wrong with just expressing beauty? I can’t recall ever enjoying a sunset because the sun imparted to me some deep philosophical meaning to life. Nor has watching a butterfly flutter about transformed my understanding of existence. Such things were simply delightful and added a small touch of joy and pleasure to what can sometimes feel like a monotonous existence. I don’t think there’s any need for everything to be profound in order to be of value. That everything needs to convey some message in order to garner attention or needs to have meaning in ordered to be enjoyed. We wouldn’t have so many cat videos if that were the case.
We need things in our lives that are just beautiful and delightful to us. We need little pleasures in life that help make life worth living along with all the more profound and philosophical bits.
I’ve come to realize that I’m not so much in the business of creating art as I am in the business of creating delightful little things through art. Most of what I create won’t have much to say, if it says anything at all but I think that’s a good thing, it leaves room for others to create their own meaning if they want or just allows them to enjoy the simple pleasure of art. 😊