Watercolor explorations, aliens, &c.

Watercolor portrait

Here are some little watercolor sketches. I worked with a different type of pen than usual to avoid the ink bleed (Microns .03 and .05), and a couple of different types of paper— printmaking papers, leftover. Two of the loose sheets were far too absorptive for working well with watercolor (no lifting, no way to work into a wash dynamically), so  a good learning exercise.

Watercolor observation: first dateWatercolor:threesomewatercolor: alienWatercolor: robot babyAmsterdam, from memory

A wander through Gowanus

photo of apartment windows
Some geometric compositions from a quiet wander last Saturday, late afternoon as the light drained from the sky.
photo of apartment windowsThis building has such gorgeous moulding.
bridge girdersbridge girders
bridge girdersThe Ninth Street subway overpass is weirdly beautiful, too.bridge girders
Morbid anatomy facade
Morbid Anatomy facade

The Magazine Show! A new project

The Magazine Show podcastThis winter I embarked on a journey into audio media— a podcast to be precise. The idea happened one night when James and I were leafing through a stack of vintage magazines, finding outlandish ad copy or headlines, and reading them aloud, trying not to laugh.

Some of the content of course is meant to be provocative, for example in magazines like Hush Hush, The Lowdown, or Suppressed. But much of the most surprising copy can be found in the advertisements, which are true barometers of the culture of an era.

The Magazine Show podcast episode art

“Let’s do a podcast of this!”

Continue reading

Receipts as a substrate for drawing

Live music at Roots Café
I was thinking— I must always bring my sketchbook, else I wind up in a situation with only receipts from my wallet as drawing surfaces. (You never know where you may wind up when you’ve no specific plans beyond 6pm.)

But, then— an ‘unconventional materials’ challenge is probably a good thing; keeps a person sharp. (Be prepared to be unprepared.)

Anyway, here are some folks I know and some I don’t— singing songs of love and heartbreak in honor of Valentine’s Day at Roots Café in Brooklyn last night. The singers and players all sounded super.

As for the drawings, I think they turned out pretty alright for hasty observations rendered on small, thin sheets of paper with text from the obverse showing through.

Live music at Roots CaféLive music at Roots Café
Live music at Roots Café
Live music at Roots Café

Prima Vera

magnolia blooms
A photo from last March; blossoms on the magnolias of Brooklyn

Here’s something that I apparently saved as a draft last spring. I found it a week or so ago, and I don’t think I’ll spend any more time on it, but as it was just recently Imbolc, and we had a 60º day Wednesday (despite the blizzard since) I thought I’d post it as a welcome to nascent Spring.

Rain replenishes groundwater,
refills the well
for creation after a fallow.

When looking results in seeing
and metaphor puts pretense aside—
you can pull focus,
delineate the shapes of things.

Eventually, the miles catch up with you;
in some way you needed them to.
Some things realign and make a sense that’s
recognizable.
Sleep refreshes; the coffee works; neurons fire.
The sun; the rain—
it could be molecular, or down to a change
in the weather.

So long as the waltz repeats.

The mythical rituals in Autumn, in Winter— for Spring,
for Summer. Everything is rooted
in something ancient.
Repetitions are inherent, genetic.

With or without a destination,
walking is never wasted—
You always arrive
somewhere.

Looking out upon falling snow in a fierce wind

snowy fire escapeLooking out upon falling snow in a fierce wind,
having read the latest news
(that has spoiled my coffee, again—)
Gone cold, with my views or once-belief
regarding some inherent goodness—

A bleak feeling that renders even this
brutal, unkind weather beautiful
Gentle, by comparison.

Each day, what counts as News
defiles sense. Escalation,
unsustainable (please)
Noah’s mythical flood
Now upon us, manmade
(Man-made, man-mad)

I feel hatred, and fear
Twin emotions, unaccustomed—
whose visages remind:
How lucky I’ve been (so far)

Each morning one awakes
with some hope,
or threads from a dream.
This morning, this blanket of new fallen snow
a metaphor:

Darkness, sold as Light.