Monday, March 31, 2008

Cross Purposes

Today the opposite of tomato is the handclaps on Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds’ ‘The Weeping Song’ & Belle & Sebastian’s ‘Seymour Stein’ (especially the first one, where the instrumental coda kicks in)

original source: ‘The Times’ 19/03/08

The appeal of this photographic source image was immediate in formal terms, with its reminder to me of such images of Mondrian’s as ‘Pier & Ocean’ & ‘Composition in Line’ from the final transitional stage of his painting before his arrival at Neoplasticism, his mature & iconic style: in effect, the white crosses against a darker-toned ground could be seen as ‘negatives’ of the black forms on white grounds of the Mondrian paintings, in which it is clear to see how he was soon to be able to coalesce his ‘plus/minus’ formal language (regularized, geometricized from more sinuous, curving, organic forms) of horizontal & vertical marks, draw them out, into his characteristic grids (& thus leave a huge legacy to Modernist painting).

Piet Mondrian ‘Composition #10 in Black & White (Pier and Ocean)’
Oil on canvas/1915

Piet Mondrian ‘Composition in Line’
Oil on canvas/1917

Another link to Modernist art history is provided by the insistently vertical composition of the photo, recalling that of Braque & Picasso in their earliest Cubist paintings, developing the formal explorations made by Cezanne - all these examples in the context of the landscape - with Mondrian in turn developing his work from Cubism, making the breakthrough into a purely abstract language from which Braque & Picasso had retreated when diverting their Cubist explorations into the realm of collage, introducing fragments of the recognizably real world back into their images which, with their ‘hermetic’ Cubist work, had become almost abstract.

With the current drawing project using photographic sources as its inspiration, it’s particularly appropriate, perhaps, to be reading at present ‘Vermeer’s Camera’, Philip Steadman’s most interesting study of and exploration into the artist’s possible-probable use of the camera obscura, one of the earliest forms of ‘image making’ technology. Fascinating contents, including much historical information & reconstructions in real space of Vermeer’s compositions and a camera obscura, seeming to present compelling evidence of the artist’s use of such equipment in the making of his paintings, the evolution of his style, as, similarly, did David Hockney’s broader-ranging (in terms of artists researched) Secret Knowledge’ a few years ago (wonderful book, especially the reproductions & Hockney’s correspondence with Martin Kemp, the dialogue between them as Hockney’s findings & ideas develop, & a magical TV documentary, I recall). But still the sheer beauty of the paintings, Vermeer’s touch, his miraculous representation of light, remains, whatever explanations or hypotheses may be advanced.

Friday, March 28, 2008


Today the opposite of tomato is the crackle of electricity in the middle of Spiritualized's 'Let it Flow'

original source: 'The Times' 10/03/08

The use of this source photographic image, retrieved from the archive, illustrating another example of our current 'big screen' culture in one of its many, almost unavoidable instances, seemed particularly appropriate in the context of the previously processed & posted drawing, again exploring issues of human scale in relation to representations in various media. And of course we're touching once more upon numerous levels of representation...


Spiritualized 'Pure Phase'
Rachel Unthank & the Winterset 'The Bairns'
Boards of Canada 'Music has the Right to Children'
Belle & Sebastian 'Fold Your Hands Child...' & 'The Life Pursuit'

What a pleasure it was & something of an appropriate coincidence, whilst this morning under the influence of medication, to experience again the narcotic delights of Spiritualized's 'Pure Phase', a most welcome reacquaintance with a wonderful album that ebbs & flows & swells & bursts with calm & noise, electric, electronic & acoustic: good, sweet medicine indeed.
A mention too for the equally compelling Boards of Canada album, still wonderful & capable of revealing new textures & depths, after all these years. Everybody now, start counting to sixtyten...

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The Next Drawing...

Today the opposite of tomato is Scott Walker's interpretation of Jacques Brel's song 'Next'

original source: 'The Daily Telegraph' 20/03/08

The original photographic image for this transcription suggested itself primarily due to its relationship to the previously posted photo of the artist Chuck Close standing beside one of his self portrait paintings, & the sense of scale both share with their depictions of the human figure seen against massively enlarged images of the head.
The passing figure was included in both sections of the diptych to maintain this sense of scale during the drawing process.

Note too the inclusion in the advertising image of such familiar signifiers of desire as the sensuously parted lips & the strands of hair brushing the neck, & the male model's strong, masculine profile...

Chuck Close with 'Big Self Portrait' 1968


Lambchop 'I Hope You're Sitting Down'
Belle & Sebastian 'Push Barman...' & 'Fold Your Hands Child...'
Sparklehorse 'Good Morning Spider'
Duke Special 'Songs From the Deep Forest'
Sparklehorse 'It's a Wonderful Life' & 'Dreamt for Light Years in the Belly of a Mountain'
Portishead 'Portishead'

Monday, March 24, 2008

Sculptural Influence

Today the opposite of tomato is the art of Alberto Giacometti

graphite & putty eraser/20x30cm
original source: 'The Times' 18/03/08

The process of this transcription - of a wonderful Cartier-Bresson photograph of Alberto Giacometti in the presence of one of his sculptures - was carried out whilst also having at hand some examples of the artist’s paintings & drawings as reference material, something else to look at & consider: I admire their unique style a great deal, they’re a constant source of fascination to study, the process of their making laid bare through the explicit statement of the network of cumulative lines & layers of which they are composed, the constant revision to which the becoming-images are subject, intensely thought, ‘worried’, into existence. Thus, both Giacometti’s graphic work & his sculptures seem to have had some small subconscious influence on the subsequent drawing & the process of its making, with it displaying a greater variety than has become usual in terms of mark making, & having been similarly worked back into in a more ‘sculptural’ manner, the fingers holding the putty eraser coming into much closer proximity to the surface of the paper. The subject’s wonderfully craggy features - putting one in mind of those of WH Auden & David Hockney’s drawn portrait of - might well have exercised some positive influence too.

Alberto Giacometti
'Portrait of Annette'

Alberto Giacometti
'Apple on a Sideboard'


Martha Wainwright
Belle & Sebastian 'Fold Your Hands Child, You Walk Like a Peasant', 'The Boy With the Arab Strap', 'Push Barman to Open Old Wounds'

Friday, March 21, 2008

A Not-So-Still Life...

Today the opposite of tomato is fruit & nut Toblerone (mmm)

graphite & putty eraser/30x20cm
original source: 'The Times' 10/03/08

Another image used as source material because of its obviously ‘photographic’ appearance, the capturing of a frozen micro-moment yet suggestive of action & movement courtesy of the blurred elements of the composition. Again, the drawn transcription relates, in formal terms at least, to the blurring technique utilised by Gerhard Richter, &, of course, the process of drawing & the temporal investment involved contrasts with the split-second creation of the original photographic image, although both drawing & running share a physically active dimension & sense of being-in-the-world.

By way of a sort-of coincidence relating to this image, the current reading & research matter includes the most handsome volume, ‘The Not-So-Still Life’, a survey of a century (i.e. the 20th) of Californian painting & sculpture based on the genre of the still life & its development over the course of that time. Fascinating stuff, both in the featured artists’ engagement with contemporaneous developments elsewhere in the (art) world & their deviations from such, lavishly & beautifully illustrated with many a fine example of work. I came across the book during a visit to the workplace by a bookseller, we chose it for our own resources from amongst the selection on offer, & then, suitably impressed & enthused to do so, I managed to track down a copy for my personal library via Amazon for a mere £3, absolute irresistible bargain! A while back I discovered a wonderful resource for cataloguing one’s books online, Librarything, which also has an active community aspect: well worth investigating for any bibliophile.


Sparklehorse ‘Vivadixiesubmarinetransmissionplot’
Belle & Sebastian ‘If You’re Feeling Sinister’
Sigur Ros ‘Takk’
Throwing Muses ‘In a Doghouse’
Lambchop ‘What Another man Spills’

Dug out the Sparklehorse for a listen after surprisingly encountering a snippet of one of its tracks during the course of a TV programme, this particular album being the first in a wonderful trinity of such also including ‘Good Morning Spider’ & ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’: I’m a great admirer of Mark Linkous’s aesthetic & the unique sound he creates, the inclusion of all manner of instruments he uses to layer his songs with such engaging textures, & of course the range of the songs themselves, from full-on, wig-flipping rockouts to irresistible melodic pop tunes (my first encounter with his ouevre was in fact ‘Sick of Goodbyes’, one such example) to the most gentle, fragile & vulnerable melancholic (almost more so than anyone) ballads, all suffused with a unique poetry & vision: a true artist, a painter of wonderful sound pictures.

For whatever whim - perhaps the idiosyncrasies of Sparklehorse - something drew my thoughts back to the first Throwing Muses releases, the eponymous debut album & the subsequent ‘Chains Changed’ EP, eventually discovered as existing as the ‘In a Doghouse’ collection: still sounding as astonishing & electrifying now as upon first hearing 20 years ago (more than!), music & an energy coming as close to escaping description as it’s possible to imagine, a truly incredible sound & experience, the sheer visceral quality, the thrill of which I always felt they somehow never managed to recapture…thoroughly recommended.

Must write upon the magnificence of Lambchop, another one-off in terms of their aesthetic, sometime too…

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

More Photography & Drawing

Today the opposite of tomato is "the son & the heir of a shyness that is criminally vulgar"

Glancing up from the drawing in progress at 6pm this evening, this sight met my gaze through the window & insisted upon being captured.

The aircraft vapour trails 'drawn' in the sky, creating, describing a geometric structure, relate wonderfully to the position of the moon.

About 45 minutes later, the sky had darkened & other drawn lines & marks appear against it, this time subtly darker in tone & perhaps more 'painterly'.

Monday, March 17, 2008


Today the opposite of tomato Is a Woman & A Sad and Beautiful World

graphite & plastic eraser/20x30cm
original source: 'The Guardian' 03/03/08

This striking image presented itself as suitable source material for transcription due to a number of factors.
Again, it displays that classic photographic dynamic between a sharply-focussed foreground object & a less distinct distance, giving a palpable sense of space to the picture plain. Furthermore, the lovely halo effect around the background silhouetted figure presented a technical challenge in its representation &, as a solution, offered the opportunity to use the eraser to make marks in a positive way rather than its more usual application as a subtractive, negative-positive tool.
Secondly, the composition itself & the tonal contrast between the black forms & all that lovely white space, cool & minimalist, perfectly suiting the subject matter.
Apparently, the inspiration for this particular Vuitton collection, by Marc Jacobs, was in part the film ‘The Royal Tenenbaums’, one I recall enjoying in the not too distant past along with another Wes Anderson work, ‘The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou’, perhaps an acquired taste but most enjoyable if one goes with the flow & flights of fancy, & visually stylish & seductive.


Tori Amos 'Boys For Pele'
Low 'Things We Lost in the Fire'
Sol Seppy 'The Bells of 1 2'
Rachel Unthank & the Winterset 'The Bairns'

One of the pleasures of listening to music whilst working, & thus searching for something different for a change for such purposes, can making a reacquaintence with an artist or album that might have strayed from one’s aural radar. Such a case in point occurred on Sunday afternoon in the form of Tori Amos’s mighty ‘Boys For Pele’, which supplied well over a sprawling hour’s worth of wonderful songs & shifting moods: a real treat.

I’m not sure just how essential music is or seems to have become to the working process – it’s certainly a most enjoyable & inspiring aspect of such – but it was interesting to recently encounter an alternative view in the shape of the opinion expressed, during a recent BBC TV ‘Culture Show’ feature, by the artist & retired musician John Squire, who, despite his past & the assumptions one might make based upon that, claimed to prefer not to listen to music whilst working as “it marked time” & this was something he was keen to avoid, rather engaging in & with painting as a ‘timeless’ activity, free of such a particular restriction. Developing from his earlier Pollockesque covers for the Stone Roses records, his recent work seems interesting from a visual – formal & technical – perspective, incorporating the use of a range of fabrics & collaged material embedded in layers of wax encaustic & paint, & also the ideas informing it, essentially dealing with the complex mix of notions of Englishness, as the artist’s statement claims.

John Squire 'No Recommendation for Clemency' 2007
Encaustic, oil , wool & paper on hessian

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Mark Making

Today the opposite of tomato is (was) Goldfrapp's live radio performance of 'A & E'

Another particularly ‘photographic’ source, with its sharp-focus/blur dynamic, has provided the material for this transcription, with the drawn marks on the face acting as further irresistible incentive. It’s once more intriguing how, removed from its original context, the image takes on another narrative dimension & allows the imagination to weave in & out of it.

original source: ‘The Times’ 10/03/08

An artist working in the medium of drawing who imaginatively constructs intriguing narratives, from details chosen from found old photographs, is Scott Hunt. His charcoal drawings are technically beautiful & the juxtapositions he makes of originally banal subject matter create images that are sometimes humorous, sometimes unsettling & often both, recreating a world of his own both readily recognisable & redolent of a mythologized idyllic past yet strange & unfamiliar. There’s an interview with him about his work & methods here.

Scott Hunt 'Gilding the Lily' 2007
charcoal on paper


‘Test Match Special’
Sigur Ros ‘Takk’
The Delgados ‘The Great Eastern’
Charlotte Gainsbourg ‘5:55’

Thursday, March 13, 2008

It's a Mad, Ad World...

Today the opposite of tomato is 'Lost in Translation'

original source: ‘The Times’ 10/03/08

The appeal of this source photographic image, culled from a newspaper advertisement for men’s shaving foam, resided initially & most obviously in its incorporation of the old faithful modernist grid into its composition (see a selection of recent previous entries & drawings): in this instance the checkered background recalling something like Carl Andre’s floor piece ‘Steel-Magnesium Plain’ (once immersed in visual art, it’s impossible not to see it everywhere & thus be able to refer to it, to be living ‘the life aesthetic’).

Carl Andre ‘Steel-Magnesium Plain’

However, another pleasurable aspect presents itself: that of being able to appropriate into an art context an image from the world of advertising & commerce, & thus reverse the more familiar flow of traffic of this relationship. In such an instance, one might refer to the work of Richard Prince, who visually sampled newspaper advertisements as an act of ‘appropriation art’ & went on to rephotograph other particularly American consumer icons such as the Marlboro man , thus giving to them an ambiguous depth & unsettling, thought-provoking quality previously lacking.

Richard Prince ‘Cowboy’

Despite the acts of desecration advertising habitually, ritually visits upon images & ideas culled from art, I can’t help sometimes loving the dumbness & cheesiness of advertising images, the utter fatuous crassness of so much visual advertising, the fakery of the ideal world-to-be-aspired-to it strives, so hard in such a facile manner, to create, & this image provides a fine instance of such, not least in the sense of smug self-regard of the figure admiring his handiwork in the alluded-to mirror, etc. In the transcribed drawing, removed from the context of the product it is promoting & the lifestyle claims of the accompanying text, it seems even more absurd: this might be an aspect to be pursued…

All this seems to tie in nicely with the current TV broadcasting on BBC4 of the ‘Mad Men’ series, a thus-far (2 episodes in) interesting dramatic recreation of & peek into the murky depths (or perhaps ‘shallows’ is more appropriate in such a context) of the world of the 1960s Madison Avenue world of advertising, adding another note of topicality to this particular drawing.

And yes, I am aware of the irony of the ‘appeal’ (undeniable, sometimes) of images taken from advertising, given an innately critical attitude to the world of…
On a related matter, there’s an interesting article on the work of Richard Prince, particularly the comment upon how, acquired & displayed by wealthy collectors, thus commodified itself, such work becomes an advertisement for the brand-name of the artist himself.


Lambchop ‘Aw, C’mon’, ‘No, You C’mon’, ‘Damaged’
Belle & Sebastian ‘The Life Pursuit’
Sigur Ros ‘Takk’
‘Test Match Special’

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


Today the opposite of tomato is the pop perfection of Belle & Sebastian

Following on from the previous image, the photographic source for this drawing had as its subject another current art exhibition-installation, this one being of Anthony Gormley amidst examples of his cast figures. Other than that, I have absolutely no idea why I made this drawing…art for art’s sake might be a noble concept but drawing for the sake of doing so, with its obvious implications of a lack of critical sensibility of any form, should be a cause for concern.

original source: ‘The Daily Telegraph’ 06/03/08


Sigur Ros 'Takk'
Belle & Sebastian 'If You're Feeling Sinister' & 'Push Barman To Open Old Wounds'

Monday, March 10, 2008

Cracking Up...

Today the opposite of tomato is 23 Minutes in Brussels

Working on this source image – picturing Doris Salcedo’s ‘Shibboleth’ currently intervening in the concrete floor of Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall – suggested that its transcription should involve a degree of working-back-into & disrupting the surface as, apparently, does the sculpture itself, removing material to create form.

graphite & plastic eraser/20x30cm
original source: ‘The Times’ 06/03/08


Luna 'Best of'

I really like the cover image, redolent of 60s cool & informal sophistication, of the rather splendid ‘Best of Luna’ CD, featuring an illustration by Adrian Tomine, whose website displays a variety of his work in his striking, economical style: good stuff & something to explore further.

One of the things about Tomine’s drawing style is, superficially at least, how much it reminds me of that of Daniel Clowes, whose graphic novel 'Ghost World' & the movie adaptation of I’m particularly & equally fond, not least in their respective visual presentations & styles. Coincidentally, a little light research has just unearthed the information that Daniel Clowes first published work in ‘Cracked’ magazine…

Sunday, March 09, 2008

More Grids

Today the opposite of tomato is ( )

Sometimes it's amazing just how serendipitous the occurrence of certain images can be.
Following on from the newspaper photo used as source material for the recent drawing featuring the check-patterned dress, came this picture, sequentially most appropriate & also perfectly relating in formal terms to the working methods of many artists, particularly those involved in the transcription of photographs.
Again, the lure of the old faithful modernist grid proved irresistible, particularly when presented in such an explicit form. Such a source image also provided the opportunity, the invitation, to transcribe it into a drawing in a classically systematic manner by a cell-by-cell process beginning in the top left hand corner, working horizontally to the right & then in this manner line-by-line vertically, to finish in the bottom right, the first time I’d ever attempted such an approach, this process being tempered slightly by occasional returns to make tonal revisions of certain individual cells as necessary once a more all-over tonal pattern began to emerge as the systematic process progressed.

original source: 'The Times' 22/02/08

As an example of the squaring-up & transcribing process, I shall cite the work & working methods of Chuck Close, to whom I’ve already made reference during the course of this year’s drawing-from-photographs project, illustrated by one of his measured-up ‘photo maquettes’ & then the finished painting, the scale of which is quite breath-taking when seen in relation to the artist himself.

Although this is an early work of Close’s & his technique & style have developed considerably since the 60s, still his adherence to the grid endures: indeed, it became & has remained an explicit element of the paintings’ form, with each cell its own perfectly-formed abstract picture within the complete brightly-coloured picture, the all-over patterned design from which can be discerned the figurative elements, coalescing & dissolving, of the human head upon which, in photographic form, it is based.

It’s fascinating, indeed, to trace the progress of the grid in Modernist painting, from its genesis in Cezanne's increasing statement of series of horizontals & verticals parallel to the picture’s edges, through the scaffolding of Braque’s & Picasso’s Cubism, to Mondrian’s gradual development culminating in his explicit, rigid, black-lined grid structures, & then the grid’s frequent subsequent recurrence in various forms in the work of such diverse artists as Jasper Johns, Agnes Martin, Robert Ryman & Close amongst others. Once referred to an ‘unreconstructed modernist’, the grid remains something to which I’m drawn…quite literally in this latest example of drawing practice & process!


Sigur Ros ‘Aegytis Byrjun’, ( ) & 'Takk'
Rachel Unthank & the Winterset ‘The Bairns’

Friday, March 07, 2008

Blogging On

Today the opposite of tomato is 'a moment of clarity'

At a time when this blog was enjoying a period of hibernation that had developed by default into its moribund phase, I came across the concept of online daily drawing blogs & other artists’ resources functioning in a journal context, as a discrete entity apart from personal websites, the like of which I ran myself (but which had also lapsed into a state of disuse). Having already begun to draw again on a more-or-less daily basis at this time, such provided the necessary motivation to continue doing so & subsequently posting the results online: given the existence already of the blog, the latter effort, it was reasoned, should prove minimal enough, even with the tendency to blah-blah-blah.

It seems appropriate at this juncture to salute some of the inspirational fellow bloggers to have blazed the trail as it were, & draw a little attention to some of the wonderful work being made, exhibited, thought about & discussed out in cyberspace, all of which is rooted in the real world of daily life here on earth & in people’s heads.

One of the fruits of my initial foray into researching the subject was Rob Pepper’s appropriately titled Daily Drawing Diary, which mostly does what it says on the tin & features the artist’s line drawings of all manner of subjects from portraits, informal observations of figures & groups of, to still lifes, to architecture & its details both grand & humble, exterior & interior, often featuring London as its local subject but also scenes from Rob’s travels to other parts of England &, quite recently, the US.

More recently, I’ve encountered the artist’s blog of Kirsty Hall, featuring all manner of her practice, that of other artists, & general scenes from life & cultural comments. Most interestingly, last year she instigated a daily diary drawing project which is now available to view in its entirety, essentially comprising a drawing made in a variety of media on the back of an envelope into which she then placed a secret something, sealed &, before the end of that same day in order to be postmarked accordingly, subsequently mailed to herself to be then scanned & uploaded to the online diary-blog. Kirsty’s intention now is that this collection of a complete year’s worth of envelopes be publicly exhibited, opened by visitors & their contents displayed online to resolve the whole project. It’s a delight to be able to view the envelope drawings in all their great variety, chart the progress of them throughout the year & appreciate the endeavour entailed in the project: I admire the focus of the boundaries imposed by choosing to make the drawings on the scale of landscape-format envelopes, of the determination required to ensure each drawing is mailed on the day of its making – the results are a great tribute to ‘the work of art’ & a singular vision. Kirsty has also posted on the advisability of artists blogging - anything to raise a bit of a profile helps.

From a commentator upon Kirsty’s blog I chanced upon Miss Milki’s ‘Spoonful of Sugar’, which again is a pleasure to visit on a regular basis, its ever-engaging content tending towards fashion but also featuring all manner of cultural interests, from art to film to architecture to design, all enthusiastically & well written, & interesting to read with many an enticing link to be followed.
One of the mentions given on this blog has been to Paul Greenleaf’s ‘Correspondence’ project: beginning with found postcards – of typical English holiday resorts, hotels, gardens – most seeming to be of a 1960s–70s vintage & displaying that artificial high-colouring typically applied to such ‘picturesque’, ‘idyllic’ subjects, resulting in impossibly blue skies, for example - the artist returns to the location to photograph it in its current circumstances, frequently ‘reduced’ as they prove to be, documenting its development or ‘progress’ for either better or worse, providing both a fascinating visual & socio-cultural document in the process, often with a degree of pathos attached to the contemporary view, paling in comparison. Also included within the scope of the work are the messages handwritten on the reverse of the original postcards – which of course add a note of originality & personality to a mass-produced object – poignant in their banalities & idiosyncrasies, all the more so perhaps for being in a form no longer as popular a means of communication as at their time, with the advent of email & instant text-messaging.
I particularly enjoy such work, especially having found a small stash of such old postcards depicting a selection of daytrip destinations in a derelict house, some years ago now, & attempting to produce a body of work incorporating particularly the handwritten texts on them, reproduced as another form of ‘drawing’, hand-made mark-making: perhaps something to be reactivated at some time in the future…

Drawn is a fine portal, a blog-type resource promoting artists’ & illustrators’ work in a range of traditional & digital media, with all manner of links to the sources of such, again updated on a daily basis.

My most recent discovery via Drawn has been the work of illustrator Lauren Nassef, whose website features various examples of the artist’s work, including a series of book jacket illustrations & the beautiful Collectors series displaying a most individual approach to the subject of portraits of collectors incorporating their personal collections such as butterflies, shells, birds, pottery or, most amusingly, Imelda Marcos & her legendary shoes, whereby the latter objects emerge in extravagant plumes from the heads of the subjects, but the real wonder lies in the contents of Lauren's drawing-a-day sketchbook blog which gives reign to the full range of her styles & techniques – delicate line drawings, that in some way recall those of David Hockney, or more solid tonal studies & often a combination of both - & subject matter, from portraits either from life or photographic sources, to still life objects, to animals & birds & plants from the natural world to intricate linear patterns either natural or invented. Often a drawing is left in an apparently ‘unfinished’ state – those that combine a degree of tonal build-up with the remainder suggested by line - but nevertheless this seems resolution enough, the point at which work has ceased somehow has a rightness about the decision to do so, an element of the charm that lies at the essence of each example. I enjoy too, following the dates of the drawings, the Monday-to-Friday cycle of work with the occasional ‘sick’ day included, this tempered only slightly by the yearning that my own working days & weeks adhered to a similar pattern, with their emphasis being on drawing & other creative practice & research rather than these having to be squeezed into those precious too-few hours not compromised by the (week)day job commitments.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Today the opposite of tomato is 'listening to the snow falling'...

The appeal of this source photo resides chiefly in its sense of space & scale & the simple yet striking geometric wedge shape contrasting tonally, equally starkly, with the cool, soft, snowy landscape. The grid of the metallic sheets of the structure (in fact the 'Global Seed Vault' on Spitzbergen) also recall Jasper Johns's 'Gray Numbers' & the quiet minimalism of Agnes Martin's work.

original source: 'The Guardian' 26/02/08


Belle & Sebastian 'Tigermilk'
Galaxie 500 'This is Our Music'

Sunday, March 02, 2008

A Pattern Emerging..(?)

Today the opposite of tomato is the unfinished project of modernism.

Following on from the previous source photograph & others of the recent past to have provided suitable inspiration & productive motivation, this image presented itself primarily through its composition neatly & equally divided into two distinct halves, which suggested its transcription into another diptych. Each of these halves have their own appeal too, with the left one incorporating an irresistible modernist grid (of which this blog has spoken earlier) into its formal elements & the right deploying the stark contrast of the highlighted forms of head, hands & the triangle of the white shirtfront emerging from an almost flat black ground. That bob is the modernist hairstyle par excellence too, a perfect marriage of form & function, sleek, cool, stylish & easily manageable.

original source: ‘The Times’ 21/02/08


‘Damaged’, ‘Aw, C’mon’, ‘No, You C’mon’, ‘I Hope You’re Sitting Down’