Thursday, May 10, 2012

My coolness! Nooooo! Plus, art.

Been an expensive week, it has.  My heating/air unit died for the last time.  It's been costing about a grand a year just to keep it repaired for the past four or five years.  A couple years ago the heater died on Xmas Eve and of course no one could fix it over that weekend, so by the time it got fixed it was down to 40 degrees inside.  Brr!  It's kinda surreal to be sitting there watching tv while your breath is visible.  Anyhow, the thing died again last week (coils cracked and leaked out all the coolant and burned out the circuit board all in one go) and that was the last straw.  Spent a horrible amount on a brand new unit.  Sigh.  At least I won't have to worry about it again for a number of years. 

I also went and ordered one o them Wacom drawing tablets.  An Intuos.  I've never used one before, but I've wanted to try it for years.  If it works and encourages me to draw more, it'll be a worth it.  Thing is, I don't have a very visual imagination.  I have ideas, and I have the technical skill (if a bit rusty), but there's a blockage in there somewhere that doesn't allow a proper translation.  I can't form a good solid image in my mind to draw from (and faces are also very fuzzy in my memory).  When I visualize something it's very unstable and abstract.  It lacks detail and is more a set of concepts rather than pictures.  A blur of trunks and green are a forest.  I need to view something in front of me to draw it well.  It's why I express myself much better with writing than drawing. 

It's not that rare, people have a wide range of visualization acuity and even good artists can have very little.  They either make it work for them or they find a workaround.  It does affect the drawing process, though.  When I want to draw realistically without a reference it starts out as a lot of rough overlapping sketches, honing in more and more as the vague concept starts to look more natural.  The problem with that is it takes a lot of trial-and-error and a whole lot of erasing.  Paper just doesn't last long against all the erasing I have to do... gets those fuzzy spots.  It's the same reason I disliked painting -- you can't erase!  But with digital drawing and tablets, I can erase and redo all I need to without any trouble.  That's the theory, anyway.  Here's hoping!

Oh, and I've counted six turtles in my yard, a chipmunk, and one three-legged squirrel.

1 comment:

satyn said...

I hear you on erasing and painting. I like drawing on the computer though I have a slight difficulty with the eye to hand difference: I grew up being used to seeing the place where the pencil point met paper and find it hard to look at the screen and not my hand. i expect with practice I will get used to it.

I have, by the way, been drawing bondage since i was about twelve or so. I remember sitting down on my own one day in school vacation and just suddenly thinking, hey, I can draw the things I like. I still recall that first drawing. It was a woman (mature as they steadfastly remain throughout my drawing life) with her hands tied behind her and a bandana gag. She was wearing a skirt and no top, so I got the pleasure of drawing her bra. She wasn't modelled on anyone as such, just a general mature woman. I also seemed to think she looked fairly content at being bound and gagged, as if such an occurrence was natural.

I used to think then I was probably the only person who had ever drawn such a thing -- sheltered upbringing I guess -- but I soon discovered other people had drawn the same, and better. It was a great relief to find out that I wasn't 'weird' in that respect.

Your point about acuity is interesting. I think the workaround is usually relying on what is in your 'standard' range of familiar features. I find certain things 'drop in' easily into a bondage illustration, such as stockings and garters, a snub nose, large well lined eyes and so on, which swiftly give the image a certain quality from the outset. I avoid certain things such as rib cages but always include a definition of the kneecap but not the hollow at the back of the knee as it makes my characters look clumsy.

Anyway, you will have your style and your preferred themes. Good luck with it all.