Work no longer in progress, Asters part 9

There’s a lovely local saying that goes; “Stick a fork in’er, she’s done!”.

Tomorrow – assuming it stops snowing – I’ll take a proper photo of the drawing in natural light and that will be the final post in this series. My thanks to everyone who has come along for the ride for the encouragement and interesting comments. Onward!

Work in progress, Asters part 8

Three days ago I thought this drawing would be finished in one more session, and I don’t know what I smoked to come to that conclusion but I’d love to have some more?

My formula for adding “noise” is complex, but regular. Regular hasn’t translated to easy yet, and it’s a struggle to keep the ratio of marks consistent and too easy to fall into a pattern of “outlines vs. squiggles”. I imagine, as I’m working through every square half inch, that I will be more facile after (another) few decades of constant practice.

Work in progress, part 7

The surface is complete. Everything is in place according to my sketches, notes, photos and color swatches from last August. (It is minus 2.2 F right now, and August seems a long time gone.) This drawing is an experiment, and the next step is to add Stochiastic noise – elements of “bad data” that cloud how I see things, but that I’ve never managed to put into a drawing. I’ve found a formula that may help me draw it in, though – make my drawings that much closer to my vision. One more post, I think, before it’s done.

Work in progress part five, the blizzard

Sometimes, you have to stop right in the middle of something because the front door blows open (lots of snow in the living room!) and the lights flicker. I have the woodstove cranked up and a flashlight in my pocket, and I’ll just have to redraw some of what I did tonight in tomorrow’s episode. Now, a break for shoveling.

Asters, part III

Third in a series of work in progress photos of asters in a blue Mason jar. Tonight’s surprise was the amount of green in the rudebekia, to have it be orange next to all that mauve. I’m hoping it stays “orangey” even after the blue glass jar goes in, because I’m still not one hundred percent in the kind of chess champion mentality it takes to figure that out.

New work, continued

This is the second installment in a series of photos of a drawing of St. John’s Day asters in a blue Mason jar. This record of work-in-progress is more interesting than I had anticipated, well, to me anyway. I’m conscious each night as I go to work on the drawing that there will be a particular geography to what I can get done – it’s very odd to see those boundaries recorded permanently in these photos.

Session Two:

New work, in progress.

I’ve never posted a drawing-in-progress; it seems like cheating. Finishing a piece is a real rush for me and considering it before completion is rushing dessert, but here it is. I feel this is a sea change in the underlayment of my drawings and I’m enjoying working over the black, faintly gnarly structure.

I’ll post follow-ups as work continues. As an aside, WordPress wanted to change underlayment to undergarment, and maybe that’s the way to think about it.


The New Year is almost upon us – must be time to start a new daybook. I use the Exacompta “Space 24” weekly desk planner. At @ 6 x 9 inches it has plenty of space to record weather, appointments and lists day to day, a generous “notes” area, and the paper lends itself beautifully to drawings. Meetings, conference calls and on-line seminars are just doodles waiting to happen.

The Donut Dragons

The amount of stress relief available from a black pen on smooth, heavy, finely finished paper is amazing. The Exacompta books start with the month of December of the prior year, so I’ll be switching over to 2011 tomorrow after recording notes about the “Boxing Day Blizzard of 2010″ (15” of snow over two days here on the island) and what we had to eat on Christmas day in 2010. It’s always a wonderful feeling to start in on newly opened pages. Below is a small beastie from a short staff meeting in 2010 – Happy New Year!