Monday, February 23, 2015

Carving out some time.

Greetings out there in the world! I feel like I have had no contact outside my classroom and the adjacent classrooms (except the occasional parent communication) in months!

I read the Diva Challenge for this week which encourages us to try new tools or techniques and thought "Hey, this is just what I needed this week!". My interpretation includes different paper and a situation that I have not tried drawing in before and I will admit that the two entries I have in this post for that Challenge were done prior to reading the challenge but they are no less relevant because of it.

So the first one is an exploration of both a different drawing tool and a different drawing paper. I usually draw on white card stock or pale cream mixed media paper. Last week had a chance to go get a new supply of paper in light of a new project I will tell you about in a minute and branched out into a darker paper. I was drawn to the "craft" paper color - sort of like a paper grocery sack - just for its gentle variation and not-so-serious black color. I fingered the dark coffee and latte colors, but in the end they were too smooth and perfect and I went with the craft color. Using this color I was able to try out the white pencil and white gel pen that I don't ever get to use when I am drawing on white. I put it all together this weekend and this is the result.

The second one was done about a week ago and involved a less than ideal drawing situation and familiar materials and tools.  In general I have very little time for drawing these days so it must be squeezed in. The other week a few other teachers and I were taking a couple of bus-loads of sophomore's in a field trip. I had about 30 minutes on the way there and 30 minutes on the way back to occupy since I was not driving and the students are pretty self sufficient. The situation was not really conducive to anything 'productive' like grading papers or planning lessons and, I thought at first, not really conducive to drawing either. The bouncing and swaying of the bus on the highway was seriously messing with my obession with smooth, straight lines. I do like to have 'control' (or at least the illusion of control!). I decided that you can't always control your circumstances and it is up to you to make the best of what you have so I pulled out the pen and the card stock scraps I take along in my bag and tried to make the best of a bouncy situation. This was the peice from the trip back. I had seen an interesting modern painting with the spiral motif as the "sky" texture on our trip and wanted to try it out. I kind of like the wiggle in the lines on Footlights.  I think it would be hard to get them to wiggle so regularly 'on purpose'!

That project I mentioned above, by the way, involves writing a couple of articles for a special edition of a magazine that is due out this spring. I decided to try to create a new piece for each article and flesh it out with with some of my more recent, but already finished ones (and it may or may not be because I don't know where all of the older stuff is!). That was the reason for buying some nice new paper - but then, do we really need a reason to buy new supplies? I have been happily draing on card stock scraps for months, and giving them away as book marks, but a magazine submission deserves better paper - if only so I don't have to write in the article that I use plain old card stock!

Until next time (don't anyone hold your breath - I have 55 tests to finish grading and 55 notebooks to go through ASAP)!


  1. I think I have typed this about 6 times now and my internet has just gone a bit mad! I really like your tangles! Especially the second one, it reminds me of a Van Gogh with it's lovely swirls. :)


  2. I really love your first tile! I looks beautiful and so well-balanced in composition. I like that you could use both black and white pens.

  3. Both tiles are wonderful! It just goes to show that you relly CAN tangle anywhere. I really love the swirly spirals in the second if I can just find a moving bus full of sophmores to try it out :-)

  4. Wow, the first one is so gorgeous! Tangling in a car (or train, what I tried) is very, VERY difficult.

  5. I think the wiggly lines work very well with the tangles you picked, and I absolutely love the tangles on kraft paper.

  6. Lovely to see your entry - it does seem a while since we saw you here! I absolutely LOVE your craft paper entry. I bought myself some tan tiles (not the official ones) and was blown away by the effects you can get by adding white highlights. Your tile is really very beautiful. And I know exactly how challenging it is to draw on a bus! Love those wiggles.

  7. Love your challenge tile. That paper really looks great! Will you share what kind it is? Your other tile is fun too, oh the bumpy bus!

  8. Both of your tiles are great, but I think that the one done on the craft paper is gorgeous. I tend to be drawn to more muted tones and love the way that you have used both black and white on it. The tangles you have used work very well together. The bus tile was all kinds of fun and you set yourself quite a challenge by doing it that way. Job well done!