EDiM #103

May 3, 2011

Lamy Safari fountain pen. Every Day in May 2011: draw your physical exercise equipment.

So today I move off Lead Pencil on to Pen & Ink (Wash). That was the plan, but moved to Fountain Pen instead, which is not the same thing. Not an ideal match with metal or tomorrow’s wooden salt & pepper shakers, but the mediums I am using are falling out more or less randomly, or at least from b& w to colour. Got cramped up against the handlebars of a bike on the train commute to work yesterday and was struck by the potential of the angle. This replaced my idea of all-black walking shoes. I also dropped the idea today of a visual context. A pen & ink subject resting against a Donald Friend ink sketch looked a bit too obvious (trying to say too much too loudly – my training in Japanese ceramics is all about the work Speaking Gently, certainly Not Shouting) , but may make an appearance tomorrow, depending on the new bamboo S&P shakers. I’ve been silently sizing up the new ones for sketching potential since they came into the house, though the translucent plastic old ones seemingly offer more.

My mind is elsewhere: on stab-binding Oriental book structures, for one, following my first class at Rosemarie Jeffers-Palmer’s Intro to Bookbinding last night. So I kept the linework free and suggestive, rather than too literal. I didn’t want the lines too precise, especially given that some of the plastic and rubber bits have actually morphed away from industrial specs due to actual bike-riding. I was aware of introducing some variety of marks and very conscious of a pattern of ‘darks’ throughout. I am glad I left the handlebar white for the sake of contrast – quite a deal of poetic licence there (losing my ‘literalness’!). The monochrome will blossom into colour as the days unfold, which is the whole point of the exercise personally for me.

Most of the EDiM sketches show a lot of work and struggle. For me, it’s attaining the regularity that comes with daily drawing. Luckily for me at the moment, they are early morning exercises, which end up setting me up well for the rest of the day. My Buddhist meditation, of sorts. I’m finding an unanticipated serenity in the objects around me, discovered through sketching them. I came upon a dismantled power plug today, which would have been a nice take on the Power Plug concept. Taking something apart or drawing the inside or even an interior/exterior view – rather than just The Surface – might make an appearance this month. Who said it had to be The Whole Object or the Outside of the Object? Mmmmm….

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