Sunday, 16 February 2014

Thinking of warmer days...

I recently completed this little etching, taken from a sketch made last summer. While we're all managing the persistent rain at the moment its been lovely to look back through my sketchbooks at summer pages and enjoy making work from warmer days.

'Aug 14th'

The memories of making this sketch remain strong. Aug 14th was a balmy evening in Gloucestershire, we sat on a quiet path, eating a picnic. There was a buzz of insects in the background and the long grass was tickly. The dog got covered in grass seeds. Nobody else walked past; we had the place to ourselves.

Photographs rarely bring back such clear memories for me. Snapping a photo is such a quick process, the sketch is a much longer, more considered process of looking.

Sunday, 9 February 2014

What's in a name?

Naming my etchings and drawings can be a lengthy process, often a name eludes me until the piece is completely finished. A while ago I read Tina Mammoser's Blog (click on the link to go to the post)about naming artwork and found really sensible ideas, some of which I'd already used myself such as the name of the place which inspired the piece, and other ideas such as sketchbook notes.

For the past year I've really enjoyed working on little 10x10cm etchings exploring technique and composition, the trouble is many of them were of different views of the same place. Naming was starting to get too contrived until this one:

July 7th
Funny how a date can be so evocative...
A date gives an idea of the weather, the temperature, the season. A date can link to people in all sorts of emotional ways, it could be a memorable date. When I sketch outdoors I write the date on the page, so for me these are the dates of the inspiration drawings. When I look at the date and the image I get a full mental and emotional picture of the day.
On July 7th last year, a hot day, I sat under the shade of a tree and while I drew my dog rolled around on the path and then joined me in the coolness of the long grass and quietly watched me. A peaceful and tranquil morning.

Aug 25th                   and                     Apr 6th

These two were then named for similar reasons
The link to the sketchbook and the process of drawing is a satisfying aspect of this naming strategy.
Thank you to Tina Mammoser for encouraging more thoughtful naming.