We visited London last Easter weekend. Besides buying books at Judd Books, visiting the marvelous Wellcome Collection and drinking coffee, I drew. Mainly people. If I look at my drawings I see medium shots of people in cafés, at home, on the train or bus. I almost never sit down to draw something. It is the other way around: I find myself sitting somewhere (train, bus, café, a home) and I think: what can I draw from this place.
(These drawings were made on the iPad with the Paper app by Fiftythree)
Passenger on the ferry: “Do you mind me watching you while you draw?”
Me: “No, I don’t. I don’t have time to talk to you though, it’s only a short time till the boat arrives at the other side.”
Passenger (seeing the ‘rewind / undo’ function on my iPad in the paper53 app): “Ssss, that’s incredible.”
Passenger: “You should draw the hair…yes, that’s better now.”
Passenger: “wow, you are really talented.”
Drawing my daughter while she is drawing. It is much more easy to draw old, wrinkly people then young children. I did draw her on the ferry from Rotterdam to Hull in October. We stayed in Hull for one day, visiting The Deep aquarium. And we visited the Wilberforce House Museum. William Wilberforce was a famous campaigner against the slave trade. From the website: “The museum tells the story of the trans-Atlantic slave trade and its abolition, as well as dealing with contemporary slavery. Galleries also offer a fascinating glimpse into West African culture.”
Drawings I made in the Coffee Company Amsterdam. For more thoughts on drawing in café’s see this post on February 2011.
I somehow lost the habit of drawing every day. Well, I almost never drew every day, but the intention of drawing every day made me draw at least 3 or 4 times a week. The last weeks I forgot to draw even those 3 or 4 times though. Then I remembered Julia Kay and her habit of drawing every day. So I took my journal and didn’t think about what I could draw, didn’t look at Flickr, email, twitter, FB, newspapers and other digital and analog distractions, and started to draw the view I saw regularly the first 18 years of my life. It is the view from my parents house on the river the Merwede.
Sometimes I have no idea at all and I just start somewhere. Most of the time I have some idea about what I want to draw and how I place on the page. During the drawing things always work out differently. Because people move. Because I planned to draw four people, but only three fit on the page. So mostly I just start somewhere and then find out where I will end up.
In this drawing I planned to draw both my brother and his friend, but during the drawing I realized that if I draw the real size of the space between the two, my brother’s friend will not fit on the page, so in the drawing I reduced the distance between them.
Since April I’m going to the gym twice a week. I surprised that I enjoy it. First I do a warming up on a ‘elliptical’, than strength training on different exercise machines: like this Independent Shoulder Press. It strengthens the shoulder muscles and it is the hardest exercise for me.
We went to Antwerp two weeks ago and there I remembered our visit to this town in 2005. We exchanged houses, and the owner of the house in Antwerp was an illustrator. His materials and table was there in the living room. I sat down and drew a tomato. I was so disappointed with the result that I didn’t touch a pencil for another five years! The most important part of Danny Gregory’s book “The creative license” was for me page 43 (There are no bad drawings) and pages 54 and 55: “Living well through bad drawings”. The answer to disappointments: just draw, draw, draw.
(Pages 22 till 42 were also important to me. After I bought the book “Drawing on the right side of the brain” of Betty Edwards, I found out these pages are a summary of Edward’s book. Danny Gregory’s summary and writing style are much more fun though and I also like his drawings more.)
Since February there are protests in Northern Iraq / Kurdistan.
The last days the demonstrations are suppressed violently, yesterday there were almost 100 wounded, Sunday about 50.
My Kurdish partner M. is worried.
The international press has been almost absent the last months.
I found this report in English, it is already one month old, but gives a lot of information:
And these short ones, which are more recent:
UPDATE April 22th 2011: Fred Branfman gave me the following links: