Shoo Rayner, the exuberant British illustrator, did a great lesson on staying inside the box — or getting the box in your head. Draw hundreds of boxes! Draw, draw, draw! I took his advice. I think taking time to draw has made me pace better and not get mover’s hysteria or extreme fatigue and arthritis flare ups. I’ll see how it works moving day — the day after tomorrow!
It hasn’t been all packing and drawing, though. I finally finished Mr. Beardsley, a grandpa doll I’ve been working on for my friend Sara, a graphic & fabric designer at Saraink, and her son little Lincoln. My husband was NOT the model — he just happens to have a beard.
Little Lincoln is only 17 months old and is already almost as tall as him mom. Good thing Mr. Beardsley is rugged.
Now all the sewing supplies are packed (along with a few more unfinished projects). Tomorrow the big journal and colored pencils go into a box and I’ll have just the journal in my purse and the pens and pencils there — a mere half dozen. I think I’ll survive.
I’ve found drawing to be a nice sort of meditation during these days before I move. I’m going to have a much smaller studio space but a much bigger heart and head space. All my life I’ve doodled and talked about drawing. Now at 51, I need to start walking my talk.
I have a bit of mixed feeling about my skills, so I figure one good thing about having a blog is that it can give me a deadline. I can go ahead and show my work, and get over it, so I can move forward. I’m posting these ink and pencil drawings because I had such fun doing them — the repetition of pencil strokes and pen lines are strangely (and wonderfully) soothing. Tone and texture builds up and suddenly my scribbles actually describe something — for better or worse.
I’m heartened by all the art journals that are now posted on line. When I get through moving, I think I’ll do some posts directly from my journal — bad handwriting and all. There’s a certain magic homeliness to hand written script now that our lives are drenched with technology. I’m not trying to make any big statements with my art right now, but I do believe that the arts — writing, music, stories, drawing, and painting — are democratic and an asset in every life. It shouldn’t be left entirely to professionals. We see a lot of beautiful and skilled work in our lives and it makes us feel we can’t possibly do it. But by not learning to use the arts as amateurs, we deny our souls these avenues of communication. Even if my art is scribbly and off-key, it provides me with a way of describing life and seeing it better. And it’s fun.