Saturday, June 9, 2012

Larger Format and Big Ideas

I have not posted any updates in a long time. But I have been drawing! Here is a small sample of sketchbook pages from... well I guess last Fall till now. I will need to get around to a scanner to get them all. These are done in a Moleskine Folio Sketchbook, which does not take ink at all, but has a delicious feel when working with pencil. Marker ink seems to work alright, and I have yet to try a Rapidograph. But no washes with this paper - it just ends up with droplets beading up and ugly soaked paper towel look. If anybody knows what exactly about paper processing causes it, please tell me. 

Moving to a slightly larger format for sketches has pushed me to spend more time on each drawing. In fact the boundary between sketch and drawing proper is not entirely clear cut. I love the meditative sinking in the drawing process, but some quick spontaneity is important to keep on hand. 

Waqar Studying

Charlottesville, VA

My Father. Topological Craziness of the Ceramic Teapot.

Lorton Prizon Tower. Views of Charlottesville #1.

Views of Charlottesville #1 (up close)

After a semester-long hiatus from art for the purposes of studying cell biology and anatomy, and working, I am now embarking on a summer of art, full force. To warm up I started with teapot drawing, moving away from the light touch feel of hard pencil (which I still dearly love) to a fuller value range. I know everybody loves drama, but I am partial to a subtler look.

After spending seven hours on reflections in the teapot, I found myself returning to the same spot on Main Street in Charlottesville for three days, for four to five hour drawing sessions, and then reworking the drawing at home as well. This is the reason why truly developing a body of work is a full-time job. With this drawing I am just finally getting a feel for where I want to go with my tools and my peculiar views on drawing as Alternative Journalism.

Views of Charlottesville #1 (so you can actually see it)

Apart from actually grasping the scene, which is a bizarre obsession in itself, there is one thing, one question that I keep rolling over in my mind: will the meditative reiteration of a scene, will realism, will my handwriting betray an emotion? There were days when I drew emotions directly, or through some sort of personal psychosymbolic lore. It seems a completely boring path now, far too trivial for emotions that would probably not even be caught on the radar of a teenage mind, mine at least.

Yet there is no lack of drama in the subtler unfoldings of life. In fact it is the realm where most mystery exists. It's a realm of earthy steady heartbeat, or the fall of a leaf, or the softness of moss, or the carving of canyons. It's a terribly patient species of human experience, and to evoke and investigate that, I do not see any other way than to trust the process. To trust that the thought will be recorded in the marks that otherwise describe some very specific forms before my eyes.


Scott DuBar said...

Beautiful work! You make me want to sketch in pencil again. I don't know if you remember me from VCU, but I'm living in Charlottesville these days so if you ever feel like sketching with someone, let me know!

Mariya Pantyukhina said...

Bring your pencils! We'll start up a Charlottesville sketch crawl.