I did some stream of consciousness drawing this morning — otherwise known as doodling — with my Graphitint pencils. These are graphite pencils tinted with color that get more vibrant when you add water. I drew and washed a few colors and this face came alive.
Lately I’ve seen a lot of really beautiful children, the children here in my community, and I’ve learned a lot about their histories — moved from home to home, witnessed violence and murders, and felt the chill of losing loved ones. Yet here watching them play in their new families, it seems a bit like they dropped out of the sky, full of hope and full of shadows. Everyone hopes we can give them a real childhood and that Bridge Meadows will provide them with the stability that will help them thrive. Already we see them growing and learning and playing.
I decided I needed to do series of these sky children and I got some great feedback from fellow artists at my Oregon Womens Caucus for Art meeting today. I will create composite drawings, not actual portraits, and try to capture the spirit I see in children. The muted color of these pencils seems perfect for the project, especially since it’s often grey and misty in Portland. The deep often cloudy life of children is rich soulful territory and I remember it well from my own childhood.
This first one is in my watercolor sketchbook. Tomorrow I’ll start on a bigger, denser piece. I love it when a stream of thought leads to an entire project.