Monday, March 21, 2011

"Je Dessine" (I Draw) Show-and-Tell Mondays

Drawing: My Bestest Morning Model
(waterproof ink pen, rubber stamp ink pads, pigment ink pads)
No art lesson last week, which forced me back on myself to draw a bit more on my own this past week. Looking at what I did I was kind of shocked! Drawing in bed is one of my favorite things to do in the morning. Most weekday mornings, I get up and fix coffee for my husband and I and bring it back to bed. My husband reads manuscripts for his publishing job, our cats sometime join us, and lately I use the time to either read art books, journal, or draw. This past week I continued to read Journal Spilling by Diana Trout who uses spilling writing as a writing exercise.  Diana credits Julia Cameron who uses this technique to stimulate creative writing in her book The Artist's Way (which I picked up way long ago and never read). Basically you write anything that comes up. Could be one word, could be a slew of sentences and if you get stuck or pause keep writing the same thing until something different comes into your brain.
Journal Spilling: The Critic and the Firebird
The exercise I started with from Diana's book was to spill write non-stop about your critic. Then draw a picture of yourself and cut it out and collage it on top. I was in too much of a hurry so I just drew a face on top of the writing. Mmmm. Is this my critic -- or is this me? I colored the drawing later with ink pads, iridescent chalk and pigment inks. The name "Firebird" came up because of the red hair I guess. But I think I also think of myself as a firebird -- I keep rising up out of the ashes, over and over again.
Drawing: MeThinks Me Perhaps
This was my second page of spill writing about my critic. I took a longer time drawing this bird. Notice the oriel necklace she's wearing. I am having trouble with my scanner so the color is not as strong here as it is in reality. Haven't figured it out yet. I used again here watercolors, ink pads, pigment pens, permanent pens. I like whatever is emerging in this drawing. There's a lot I don't like still, but I am becoming more comfortable with fumbling around -- like someone who has been blinded or put in a pitch black room and is getting their bearings. "Surprise, surprise..." as Gomer Pyle used to say.

And as a postscript I drew two journal pages in the past week: one and two.


  1. Virginia, this is so inspiring! I can't draw, but you make me want to take some of these steps. I love all of them, but the first one is really wonderful.

  2. Thank you Heidi! Just pick up a crayon, a pencil, or a pen -- and go at it! Oh -- and DON'T LISTEN to that critic!

  3. I love the idea of a firebird. That is one of the hardest things about being creative, it is the getting up again when you find yourself in the ashes.

  4. I love this post, and especially the way you decided just to go for it and draw right on top of the words instead of collaging over it. It looks great, and conveys a lot, too -- drawing right on those words of criticism. How liberating.

  5. the idea of journal spilling is fascinating. I did something like it in a visual way when I was up in Yosemite a couple of winters back. I was deeply sad and I decided not to fight it. so I went out with my camera and stayed with my sadness and somehow found sadness looking back at me even in all that beauty. often I will go and play with those images when i'm feeling blue and I validates my feelings. (this is diff. from depression, I never encourage that!).

  6. These are righteous cool drawings/paintings you're doing!

  7. Very juicy drawings! That firebird energy is emanating!
    Plus drawing with spontaneous writing - very powerful to express with both.
    Have never known that iridescent chalk exists. Must experiment with them
    Started a blog page at Apple last night so forget a computer trade I would really like to come to your Collage Cafe this weekend.

  8. Thanks Koufax -- good to hear from you! Morganne -- the iridescent chalks are from Sennelier -- they come in a box of 12 -- you can get them from Dick Blick. YUM!!!!

  9. enjoy watching you create....

  10. Love this post! I've been doing three pages of "spill writing" every day religiously for about the last 5-10 years--I'm addicted to it!

  11. Hey Kathy and Kayla -- did you know that you were also "spill sisters" -- one verbal one visual? I like the idea of both! I used to write every day -- like 25 years ago, but stopped for a very, very long time. It just seemed like I had said everything I needed to say and why repeat the same old same old? But now I'm using it just to unleash something creatively let the energy out what ever it is, it's bound to go somewhere positive creatively as long as I hold it in that light!