Friday, January 11, 2008

bring us to silence

I've been reading, obsessively, The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. It seems I am brought to silent grief, disbelief, and understanding as every page turns. I am impressed by my own desire to remain immersed in such an intense story. I am thankful to Mr. Hosseini for the insight into Afghanistan that I was never given though I grew up in an overlapping time-frame.

This week, I also began teaching at the Monroe St. Fine Arts Center, an independent, non-profit Arts education center in Madison. I'm teaching an adult drawing course on Wed. nights of this month. It is going well so far... though I wonder sometimes if I might just stop talking and let the students draw! We now seek to understand how we can tap into our Right brain's methods of gathering and processing information and let go of the symbol, systematic methods that our Left brain is so used to employing. If we can let go of symbolism and be specific about the subject we intend to draw, study it's unique qualities, relieve ourself from having to guess, then our drawings will improve. We have all the information we need to do an accurate drawing - we just have to begin to look for it, see it. Over time, the muscles in the hand and fingers, and our understanding of the media we use will strengthen and become intuition. Combining this method with practice - undoubtable improvement. Now, let us have patience!

I also had my weekly lesson with Alex, my 11 yr. old charge! We made collages. Here's mine. An homage to the family. More work in the painting direction as well. I took the large painting, we'll call it "position 1" for now, off of the stretcher frame. What a relief to get it loose again. I realized as well, that I wanted to bring back the sense of atmosphere, so I did more layers of the white wash and transcribed breathing in graphite. I covered the birds, and they show through slightly. I did some more work to the piece, but will have to photograph it and have the visual here in order to discuss it. I also began a 2nd painting, position 2.

I'm continuing the tiny 4x4" paintings as well. I find I'd like to call them "practice."

1 comment:

Christian said...


Congrats on your lessons at the Monroe St. Fine Arts Center. I'm sure it's a mutually beneficial process for you and the students.

I'm liking the small mediation paintings. The texture and the gradation of tone allows the mind to enter into the space created by your repetitive marks. I also like how the process is evident in the type and brightness of each mark. One can read into the pieces and connect with part of the experience you must of had when you created them.

Thanks for showing them.