poemimage

Where text meets image. Where the visual intersects the literary.

Category: Ink drawings

July 10, 2013

I am working on a new GIF to accompany 5 lines from Lyon by Pierre L’Abbe. The stanza he sent me is so evocative I keep creating new images. So a few more days until I post that.

In the meantime, in a file folder, I found a poem & drawing from July 10, 2013. Close to eight years ago. My dryer was broken, though not the washing machine, so I went to the laundromat with bags of wet clothing. I brought a pen and paper.

The memory of writing a poem in the laundromat impacts me more than re-reading the poem. The poem touches on loss. It was a big deal at the time. As big as the universe. The drawing seems to be about the future. And loss as well.

He examines something, a memory, maybe it belonged to somebody, while his body transforms. He’s growing wings made of fossils or maybe a spiked spinal column has departed. Disappearing. His tears fall channeled into ancient patterns. Or maybe those channels teach him new patterns. Giving him fuel. Leaves, or flames, grow from his eyes. A drawing about vision.

A quickly sketched ink drawing might express many secrets. Something unknown always at work.

GIF Experiments: 24 (The Ronettes… although)

I’m glad I was able to post a GIF today. I was working with a large volume of images interpreting five lines from Lyon by Pierre L’Abbe and need more time. I will (knock on wood) assemble that GIF this coming week. In the meantime I offer this ‘slow-moving river of a GIF’ featuring (ostensibly) The Ronettes, although they too were code for something else I suspect, considering when I drew them.

GIF Experiments: 22 (The Charge of the Light Brigade)

Although the title in the GIF looks like a book and the GIF looks like a book trailer it’s not. However I created poetic text after the fact.

*

The Light Brigade

As in

Let There Be Light.

Witness

The mechanics of charging light.

Witness traction activate

Clouds of unknowing known

As muscled determination.

The mechanical opposite to A sucker born every minute.

Touch your tongue to the tent of your mouth. Announce

Charge

Pronounce light

As in

Let There Be Light.

*

Notes on the GIF: Intimations of Runic script transform into curvilinear vegetal design indicating a charging beast. It happened visually by itself (so to speak) during the design process.

Finding ‘his’ footing. Gaining traction. The irony of a ‘massive’ beast doing double-duty as charging light. Charging like flashlight beams in a force field? Surely he is not disembodied.

This GIF ponders our pressing situation, universal as it is, and the question of something, anything, out of the blue in reply.

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GIF Experiments: 17 (Line Drawings + a Song Title by Van Morrison)

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Developing Images

I scanned an ink drawing done in 2010. I did hundreds of smaller and larger drawings for an exhibition in 2011 of 66 works. This one didn’t make the final cut although I don’t know why.

For much of Monday and half of Tuesday this week I created digital manipulations in Photoshop of the original drawing.

Much of my knowledge of Photoshop comes from exploring but I was fortunate to take a digital design class with an expert.

He was preparing the class for careers in advertising or editorial design. I was the oldest person in the class. The others were all whizzes with software and keyboard shortcuts, etc… I was like a farmer with a mule.

The original drawing has now given birth to 122 images. I scanned the original at 1200 dpi so the images are sharp and succinct. Take them down to 300 dpi to print a book, maybe add text – or leave them as digital collages. Somehow around #80 or so this figure emerged, imagined as the young woman from a poem (written this week) named Mary.

One, of course, should let the work sit and later evaluate it but for now I am feeling none-too-precious about words and ideas. I just might leave it raw and imperfect.

The image of the cross to accompany the Vosnesensky poem I am Goya came from rearranging the comics or graphic novel-type panels. A lot of those in the final 25/122.

I realized after posting I am Goya that I had also posted this poem in poemimage on the last day of November in 2012. Around that time my great journey into loss was underway. I survived. Relating this work by Vosnesensky (& knowing its monumental & historical subject matter) to personal psyche is perhaps not trivial. The word ‘bookends’ comes to mind.

You Told Me You’d Be Home By Ten

Original

I sent five ink drawings to a poet.

For the cover of her book with a theme – dreams, running throughout the powerful, prophetic poems.

I selected the drawings from two sketchbooks filling simultaneously, slowly, sometimes on the subway, sometimes in a cafe.

I work in these sketchbooks, as well as accordion sketchbooks, on and off, sometimes obsessively & intricately,  sometimes less so.

I love ink drawing and the history of ink drawings – the contrast of line, design. To be honest I don’t want to do ink drawings, it’s inescapable & too pleasurable. An addiction of sorts.

My early heroes were Aubrey Beardsley and later Jan Toorop.

Today I find myself mesmerized by the line of Pict or Runic art and the heavier B&W contrasts in lino & woodcuts.

I have a book from the early 1900s & the author is railing against modernity in ink drawings.

He’s right about traditional, technical skill but quite misses the point.

The quest to return to what was lost in our origins is not determined by accuracy in depiction.

But rather seeing the spirit of the thing.

Or what we imagine is the spirit of the thing.

 

 

Drawing 14 assumes new form

After I broke (shattered!) my ankle I began drawing for long periods in bed.

I used a Sharpie marker on lined paper and numbered the drawings.

Sometimes I titled the drawings and indicated how I might use them, a linocut or a painting.

Drawing 14 broke free of its mooring and reappeared after traveling through several rooms.

I recreated Drawing 14 using digital tools.

1 + 4 = 5. Some people say 5 is a dynamic number of change. An indicator of flux, of positive movement,

& some things never reappear & you realize there might be something else, down in the roots, you need to want more.

And you experience both mystery and loss

while wearing wings and antlers.

Wherever those came from.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Say Never

PID8

I never planned

PID3

To add

PID11

Paul is dead

PID5

To the conspiracies

PID15

Swimming in my head.

PID 1

But as they say

PID22

Never say never.

PID20

A Small Experimental Drawing (and the law of intended consequences)

experimental

After visiting the JMW Turner exhibition for a second time at the Art Gallery of Ontario and wading through the busloads of students and groups of seniors from retirement/nursing homes I realized how fortunate I had been on Friday night when the place was half deserted. Possibly half full.

Detail 1

Again I am reminded of Turner’s grey. Vanishing yet insistent. Drawing the eye. Drawing the eye into. Possibly even halfway in.

detail 6

Sometimes one is drawn by the air of an unexplored territory. Or summoned by insistent mystery. Summoned halfway into a vanishing mystery.

detail 44

I focus on the brilliant whites in Turner’s work, and escape the crush, wandering into a drawing exhibition pulled from the print & drawing vaults.

detail 15

Three of the works refresh anew my dilemma. I think of the Judge’s black robes.

detail 8

 I join a raiding party. The Captain’s name is Font. His horse is called Halfway.

detail 48

The raiding party does not solve my crisis. Nevertheless I raise the end of a burnt stick from the fire.

detail 7

Marking the edge of the law. My declaration marking the edge of the law.

detail 4

There is no natural boundary to the embedded law of intended consequence.

ink amber 4

Another edge must roll it back to where it came from. Or swallow it. Leaving its bones along the trail.

ink amber detail 3

The edge of the sun!

The ambers, and whites, and Naples Yellow in Turner’s sky, radiating with silent resolution.

amber ink sun 100

Let me tell you a story about Naples Yellow.

ink amber 9

I visited an artist one night many years ago.

There are many stories to tell about that night but I will tell you this one.

When I was leaving, at the bottom of the stairs, the artist began talking about Naples Yellow.

And did not stop.

ink amber

The artists, the art periods, the art movements involved with Naples Yellow.

The secret uses of Naples Yellow, The powers of Naples Yellow, the magic of Naples Yellow.

ink amber 8

Perhaps Naples Yellow can solve my dilemma.

amber ink sun 100