The Latin phrase is only one of many bits of advice, mottoes, sayings and the like that have influenced my own art, but it's been an important one. It helps me to continue the habit of daily drawing. Sometimes the drawings are digital but more often I work in traditional media. Some drawings are mere sketches just for study, like those of facial expressions I posted some weeks ago, some are preliminary studies for paintings, and some are stand-alone drawings in various mediums from ink to metalpoint. But the common denominator is always the continuation on a daily basis.
Here are a few graphite images from the past six months.
For a finished portrait drawing, a mid-tone paper is usually preferable because the artist can then employ light and dark values to suggest structure more readily. This one of Brooke is actually on white paper.
The next image is a quick sketch of a deranged man who shot two dark-skinned foreign men in a bar in Kansas a month or so ago. The victims, who didn't know the attacker, were computer engineers from India, but the shooter somehow believed they were Muslims. One of the men died. The story was even more affecting when I saw the shooter's expression in his mug shot, which was widely published. Mug shots are taken at a time of significant inner turmoil for most of the subjects, many of whom have committed a serious offense. Seeing photographs like the mug shot that served as a reference make me wonder what on earth is happening behind those eyes. What emotions, forces, outside stresses and other unknown or unspeakable influences lead us to commit some of the dreadful offenses we humans are capable of? What happened to these individuals that led them to the behaviors or events that prompted the photo? The idea was to capture the intensity of his gaze and to suggest the unexplored depths they could reveal.
The first is a drawing of a mama cat descending stairs with a kitten in her mouth. This is about 5x7 on toned paper, done from a small sketch I saw in a textbook, considerably modified. The muscles and movement of animals is an important part of any artist's mental dictionary. A lot of animals have very similar musculoskeletal structure, particularly mammals. Dogs and cats are part of everyday life nearly everywhere and deserve particular study.
Drawing in the Morning (previous post in the series)