"Life is a great big canvas, and you should throw all the paint on it you can." - Danny Kaye
Monday, March 8, 2010
A NEW BLOG!! (for Two and for You)
I, no WE, have a NEW BLOG! And for the blog I bought a brand-spanking new large watercolor Moleskine sketchbook. On the very first page I painted the above picture. And today I am going to stuff it in an envelope, and mail it 1100 miles away to Raena.
When it arrives, Raena is going to open that envelope. Then she will draw or paint something else on the same page - whatever else she wants - and she can paint over and around or on top of what I did if she wants, and she can use any medium she feels like. And then she is going to mail it back to me! Then I will work on the page some more.
We are going to mail that Moleskine back and forth and back and forth .. and work on that one and only page until one of us declares it done! Whoopee!
And then we will go to page 2.
In this way we both hope to improve and challenge ourselves. We are going to post the results at our NEW BLOG and both of us are quite excited about this. Our Blog is pronounced Two and Fro. Well, actually, we want to be cool..so we call it 2'nfro. Cool, huh? And you can find it here.
We want to post everything we do in the Moleskine in one place because you are so much a part of what motivates us. And we would love for you to come along as each page progresses over time. It will be a leisurely endeavor, perhaps a post a month, I am guessing. So please .. please go over to 2'nfro, and say that you'll follow us, please?! Both Raena and I will so appreciate it.
This is not an original idea. We both, some time ago, saw a blog where two professional illustrators did this - one was in Europe and the other in the US. Raena and I, of course, are not professionals, and we are both on a single continent (she is in Houston, and I am in Miami).
But we are 1100 miles apart, and have never met except in this virtual reality, and most of all WE TRY HARDER!
I would love to link to that earlier blog to show you all of the possibilities, but darned if I haven't lost track of it. (If any of you know of it and can provide the link, that would be great.) As I recall, they had already completed their sketchbook by the time I got wind of it.
But a good idea is worth repeating, don't you think?
It's funny, but I already think the new blog has helped my art. It's certainly got me thinking. I didn't want to mail just anything to Raena. After all, she was going to see it in person. And that meant something to me, in itself.
This picture is from a photograph that I snapped on my cell phone. I saw the woman standing in front of the most beautiful silver bus but something about her and the dogs struck me. So I stood in front of my car and pretended to text. Thumbs moving, I snapped her picture. And she smiled at me. I think she may have known what I was doing, but didn't seem to care.
The cell phone isn't the best camera around. But digital is amazing. Although she wasn't close, I can zoom and crop and then blow it up so I can see it in all its glory on my monitor. And if a photo isn't perfect, all the better, because my art abhors precision. But using the photograph was interesting for me. I spend so much time sketching in public places, that with time to study the shapes and values I am very pleased with the result. (The scanned image is a touch disappointing - the colors are more subtle in the original. The dog on the right has a slight blue tint to the grey, and the outfit on the lady is a bit less bright, more maroon.) Anyway, I hope to do more like it.
And now a solemn moment. In honor of the new blog and the new Moleskine I decided to take my Lamy Safari, with its black Noodlers Ink, out of retirement. Its nib was a bit wider than that of the .005 point of the Pigma Micron that I'd been using - another fine, though less expensive, pen.
But I had forgotten. Forgive, me, my Lamy, I had forgotten..
Ode to the Lamy
Oh, Glorious Lamy. Your Line is So Smooth. Your Line flows like a river. Meandering wider and thinner, you Draw Like no other pen that I have ever known. Oh, Glorious Lamy, I never again will forget.
That said, I am so pleased that I decided to draw with the Lamy. I took a risk, and drew pen to the paper with no pre-drawing, figuring that I do that all the time anyway. And the pen felt so good in my hand.
Kathy recently had an interesting post on collaboration, and to read the comments on the post, artists have had mixed experiences. But I am excited about this one, and I know Raena is too. And our hopes are modest. We merely want to improve and then improve and then improve, and then ultimately conquer the art world. That is all.
Swerving along the artistic road with every sight a potential target. * * * If you'd like to contact me about any of the art that you see - about purchases, commissions or just to say hello - feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I'd love to hear from you!