Monday, November 14, 2011

My left-hand sketchbook and 'piecing beyond the piece you pieced'

So, with the injury of my right hand, I decided to give left-handed drawing and painting a try. The sketching proved more difficult. These flix show a bit of the progression. The physicality of piecing and looking just ahead of your line made for less of a challenge than making my already quite small outlines on paper.
With the left hand unable to fall into habits, lines had to be considered actions, and as with painting I had to look slightly ahead of the line I was drawing for accuracy. I think the swapping over to the other side of the body can have an interesting effect creatively. A friend said that apparently Frazetta had to change to his other hand and his work improved! Give it a crack!
The last photo here of the beginnings of an 'N' is with my left and a partially moveable right. 
Normally, these days, I would consider drawing my letters on paper as a loose empirical study on an idea or set of lines. 
On one end of the spectrum, the notion of a complete sketch on paper traced over in fineliner and then carried out on a wall with exactitude can sometimes feel a little limited. Although, this was at a time the only way I knew. I personally prefer to see seminal ideas with all the human imperfection.
The best pieces I see and strive for myself can look like they were hard work, are painted as best as the person can, done with an effortless appearance, but with a touch of 'perfection in imperfection' that constant forward development naturally provides. So often, writers get caught up in the 'wow' factor of a flashy piece without personalized substance that is not much more than an amalgamation of other styles and can tend to totally overlook others' solid quieter contributions to the tradition. Obviously, you want writers to appreciate your stuff, but not at the cost of the fun had with moving forward with your own interpretation of letters.
Having just enough on paper allows the recent developments to be put up stress-free and allows for a little unforeseen progression and the unexpected to happen. 
To the other extreme, complete freestyling can run me out of fresh ideas and also run the risk of creating  personal mediocrity within a piece.
In summation, in an issue of IGT, P.H.A.S.E 2 pointed out something to the effect of: "800,000 people out there are great at drawing, but what we do is different, it's about piecing beyond the piece you pieced."

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