Precision in the Age of Machines

His old job as
a machinist: setting
up coordinates and
watching the laser cutting

through sheet-metal, in
his voice a longing, or love.
He liked that kind of

work because it required precision

(by him or by the machine,
I’m not sure). How
admirable.

Is there a more desirable
asset than precision?

A trait I’ve never had,
sloppy artist that I am,
in any of my work.

Except perhaps Poetry—
or at least I’ve only cared
about precision when it comes to
Poetry.

Poetry in this day and age (!)—
and for a middle-aged man, nonetheless.

Sophia Loren

I’m having dreams again, or rather I’m remembering them. Hold my breath, don’t dare tell anyone, in case they disappear. Up in a puff of smoke. Who’s that Italian broad, ran around with Andy Warhol? she was there. Sophia Loren? nah, fashion designer or something. While adjusting her garter she told me, work. work. work. All the great ones put in the work.


The Only Good Art…

The only good drawings he’s managed to come up with over the passed few years, are the one’s in which he started with nothing. No plan. No concept, no idea of where he would go with it. Start with a few lines. Experiment with technique and try his damnedest to fight those inner demons, which, bubbling, always keep him on the precipice; the knife-edge of sanity. A shape materializes and, if he’s lucky, he’s off into the void. The void where ideas bubble up and he sees it.

It’s here that conceptualization actually works. If you try to start from a concept, you’re doomed to failure (no matter the outcome), you’ll never accept the outcome.

—Ah, so this is freedom!

(And here is where you realize that in order for there to be freedom, it all depends on the situation; the here and now; the original intention, and application, of the design in the first place. )

The Conversation Artist

 

To be read in the voice of Charlie Sheen:

 

I’ve given up the writ-

ten word, given in to

the limitations and mirrored

reality. so that i can focus

on the art of conversation.

like me it leaves no trace

at least no paper trail

no more trying to be

published, polished

no more trying to be

what i think They want.

Is there any other art form

in this day and age that could

have a more profound effect?

A conversation can’t be

commercialized, and sold,

it’s not profitable, unless

you’re in on it.

A conversation is love

an art form that is

the truest expression of life.

Wood Block Project #1

So I’ve had this woodblock project post sitting in the drafts pile for a while now and I’ve been working on some new woodblock designs. So I figured I should show off my first attempt as well! I had this vision while I was trying to fall asleep. While I knew I wasn’t asleep the shadowy image on the wall, looking over me, sure made me feel like I was in one. The shadows and light layered over one another which brought about a hue around the edges and seemed to move the figure like some kind of 3-D image.

It was clearly a face on the wall, as it always is. Once I looked deeper though I realized that a lamp shade is what made up the mouth shape, slits of light were the eyes, the convex ceiling was the top of the head. The two walls join at an angle which really made the figure pop. It was at this point that I figured I either had to draw the Buddha figure watching over me lest I be haunted by misfortune. Over the following days I worked out the sketch, changing proportions and trying to find the right shape. This is what I settled on.

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Now I have only had one chance to try a woodblock and that was a while ago. So its really no surprise that while carving the block I had some gouges and imperfections, though it was fun I wasn’t sure if the end product would turn out.

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“Top Knot”

I ended up needing to go back and cut a little deeper in the nose, and mouth area. You can see along the border where the knife slipped and some of the smaller areas are really gouged at. I’m still looking for some good quality paper to put a black and white draft on. I had some black paper around the house and wanted to try some prints.

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Not exactly as excited as I was when I started. The raised face takes away from the cool outline. This was the better print that turned out after trying a few. While I was working on the nose I took a bit too much out which you can see clearly here. I also had a tough time getting a smooth print. You can see where I lifted the block the little bubbly areas that I think are either from too much ink, or not the right type of paper, or both. I’d like to try this image again, I think it’s really cool and could look great on a t-shirt.

This weekend I plan on sketching a new design, I’d like to make a nice archival butterfly picture for my wife.