a memory, the stronger and stranger it is.
Posts Tagged ‘drawing from memory’
a memory, the stronger and stranger it is.
We live in a rainbow of chaos.
The distinction between the past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.
This is a color study using Neocolor II crayons in a Stillman and Birn Delta journal. I work the crayons both wet and dry to create a sense of interpreted color and light. The doors are indeed bright pink.
My reference was a small snapshot of my grandmother taken on her trip back to Ireland to visit relatives. She was always very much the posh lady: hose, heels, and pearls. Even if she was going to clean the kitchen, she wore a ” housedress”.
If you are out to describe the truth, leave elegance to the tailor.
By my definition a sketch tries to tell the visual truth in a brief amount of time. Sometimes using the most basic tools can help one get to the heart of the matter most directly.
What is more basic than a crayon? The smell of the holy CRAYOLA 64 ranks with the lingering memory of chalk dust, church candles, and Chanel No. 5 in my childhood memory. Kids the world over will be unwrapping boxes this holiday, enjoying the immediate color blast, and the pang of regret when the paper must be peeled back for the very first sharpening.
The grown-up version of the crayon is the fabulous NEOCOLOR II by Caran D’Ache. Wax based and water soluble, the NEOCOLOR II crayons are actually wax based pastels. They can be wet to be used as watercolor, applied in a soft buttery manner dry, and can be layered one hue over another. Need a stocking stuffer for the arty? Go for a set of Neocolor II crayons. The sketch above used only about 6 crayons.
I like to draw from a few childhood photos to unwind. First I do a gesture drawing in red ZEBRA SARASA ink. The Neocolor II crayons are perfect for a quick pass of color on top of this foundation. The intensity of the pigment and loose application capture something of the way my memory retains imagery: an impression but not a scientific recording of facts.
Childhood in my memory has extremes of light and intense color. My memory lacks a measure of *elegance but it does have some level of distinction.
My siblings and I are probably at Hershey Park if the date on the photo coincides with my recall of that summer. Sis *urped an Almond Joy all over me on the drive. To her credit she said she did not like Almond Joy. Thanks Mom for pushing the issue!
Bro was pretty peeved that he was too small to ride the electric cars. I think he is holding one of his Hot Wheels in his right hand. The intense chocolate milk and mind blowing donuts seemed to chill him out, though Dad was still cranky from the long wait on an endless line to find out anyone under 3 feet could not ride.
* Urping pretty much eliminates the possibility for elegance…
The true art of memory is the art of attention.
Almost every night before bed, I sketch using old photos as reference. The photos are usually damaged and very small, the images are of pretty poor quality. I only have a few. Things happen in translation. I do not always know what the drawing will look like in the end because there is never any erasing and the sketch is in ink.
This process causes me to remember things long forgotten and the people who can never be…
I saw a handwritten post on the bathroom wall at school: *” You Are Only What You Can Remember “. It got to me. Every time I used that stall, I got more upset reading it. There are people in my life who can no longer remember. So I decided to try to remember for them and for myself through pictures. These drawings are not making any attempts at ” realism” or ” correct techniques”. Rendered quick and sketchy. They are an exercise in remembering the past: the paths of light and spaces we moved through. The memories that come up are surprising. My sister remembered details of my grandmother’s kitchen I had forgotten, but once noted I could see them too. Again. Amazingly cinematic.
These drawings happen late at night when my mind is quiet. Sometimes I draw floor plans, or plans of the neighborhood, or my favorite items at some lost place in time ( spirograph, my green bike, that tiny deer figurine…).
DRAWING FROM MEMORY TO REMEMBER.