This was started with the whole image in mind, the whole drawing just building up from these simple forms. I wanted to see what would happen with the overall effect of lines criss-crossing all over the place, connecting up most circles but leaving others untouched. There was a certain satisfaction seeing the circles being surrounded or joined up by these communication lines, a comparison to today’s ever complex systems where we all stay in touch or parts of the world that come under the ever increasing threat of road building and other forms of communication.
Moving on from the planar drawing of perfect grasses 1 and 2, this was created in a circular ‘flower’ like format, really just keeping my freehand skills up and just working on building up the individual blades. As the pic developed, the blades take longer to draw as the have to hide behind the blades in the forground. As with many of my pics, the circle becomes a ‘sun’ like object as the blades become denser towards their base.
Tightening up the gaps between the black impressions, this has been the ultimate experience of ‘naked eye’ accuracy to date. Two circles, one absorbing, one expanding, the idea taken subconsciously from a colour drawing of an orange and blue star entwining each other in my fathers collection of Life Science books called ‘The Universe’. Once you start this project,, its only the edges of the A4 page and distractions to do your 9-5 job stopping this being a life long project. What happens outside the edges, just like our natural misunderstanding of our grip on the limits and expanse of the universe.
This was like changing gear when it came to depicting detail on A4 paper. The vastness of space swirls around and is sucked into a fine point, depicted by a minute 8 pointed star. Construction lines were hand drawn with use of a ruler to ensure this swirling affect was even and accurate. On the opposite side, matter is being ‘thrown out’ from a pure white centre, possibly from within a funnel. The black streaks increase in size as they splay out to all areas of the picture, darkening all along as one moves further away from the centre. The matter is elongated and follows the swirl as it is drawn into the central 8 pointed star. All around the edge, the farther out one goes, the ‘matter’ resumes a more relaxed ambiguous shape, resembling a decrease in energy, approaching stillness at the corner of the picture.
My feelings towards producing something which created a swarm, a focused point, a really just see what would happen if you add more fine ‘ticks’ perpendicular to each other. So this could be likened to a swarm of bees, a satalite view of a city, being more concertrated and crowded towards the centre or even further out into the universe.
Working with a 0.13mm rotring pen, this was just an experiment in a dangerous level, taking up so much of my time. This work threw up all sorts of fears of how the drawing will eventually look, not working in a paid job, fear of loosing my skills in my old employment, not following a certain career path. It also could, like many if my ‘line only’ orientated drawings have been ruined by a sudden scare from neighbours banging their door shut and me jolting the pen, so most of this was done in the early hours.
Initially this was going to be a study of ‘crowding in lines’ drawn at 90 degrees from each other (a kind of cross hatching), similar to the picture ‘Busy Skies’. The densest part would have spread out from the centre but after the horizontal and vertical lines were drawn, the middle part was then ‘filled in’ leaving a very satisfying ‘orb’, sun or planet like, hovering in fine balance. This then lead me to an idea of studying this approach to my work, creating these dense spaces in the centre, seeing what happens when this technique is used. It underlies this for of accurate abstact work in that I never really knew the outcome or affectiveness of this work until near the end. This is an example of ‘trusting yourself’ that the hours used to draw will create an affective outcome.
This pattern was very much a trail and error, using coarser pens in the larger patterns, fining down to 0.13 mm pens for the smallest. I hope to portray a 3 dimensional image by utilizing this technique.
Once you’ve started, its like knitting – just plod on with the idea with careful attention to detail on the size, accuracy and keeping the shapes as random as possible. The angular white objects disappear off into the horizon and emerge from the central horizon as black objects of rounded appearance, again with equal distribution and size.
I suppose I was taking the greatest risk here as once the fine 0.13 dots were started, there was no stopping. I had no idea of what intensity this ‘completed’ picture would have done. As I started it, it filled me with dread in the fact I could be putting in so many hours and possibly produce something quite weak. However, the subtleties of the various shading created by the dots leaves a lasting impression and is very gentle on the eye. Its very simplicity of walking through pea soup fog and getting ‘glimpses’ of clearer weather ahead – or will it just darken up again?