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Progress on the pen and ink drawing of window and clouds

without comments

Another two weeks has gone by since I last posted an update, and as you may imagine, my feelings at the moment are that the progress is slow and painful. I spend most days with a magnifying glass in my left hand as I work gradually across the paper, going back and back again over clouds, deepening the shadow each time. I haven’t kept an exact tally on the hours I’m at the drawing board, or even the weeks now. Here are scans of the progress so far (click on images for detail).

stages of the entire pen and ink drawing, I stages of the entire pen and ink drawing, II stages of the entire pen and ink drawing, III stages of the entire pen and ink drawing, IV

The first section of the drawing was the quickest and easiest: the sky through the window (below) was based on some evening clouds I photographed out of my bedroom window, which for some reason became twisted up and not how I’d really imagined them. I knew I wanted them to be threatening, distorted and unusual, but they came out even more surprising. They remind me of something seen through a microscope, or telescope.

the sky through the window, I the sky through the window, II

I’m still not certain what I want to have through the bottom half of the window. My initial ideas were of hands pushing against the panes, and even to use real fingerprints to form clouds. I have left them blank for the time being and it will become clearer to me later in the process what needs to go there.

The skies around the window (below) are a different matter. They’re made up of clouds I photographed on several days this summer, some on Clee Hills where I took the initial photographs of the dining chair, some from my garden. The process with these clouds, as they are so detailed, is very slow and quite agonising some days. The good news is that my headaches have actually reduced over the past months, and so I’m fairly certain they’re not down to eye strain, which was a concern of mine initially. Anyway, here are some closer details of these clouds, none of which are anywhere near completion yet.

building up the clouds in pen and ink stippling, I building up the clouds in pen and ink stippling, II building up the clouds in pen and ink stippling, III

Here’s an idea of what I see when I’m drawing (below). Some days I do wonder why I’ve set myself such a task: why I don’t just pick up a pencil and do things that way. It’s quite difficult to give an impression of what it’s like sitting here and being absorbed into a world of clouds upon clouds. It’s irritating, and compulsive. And sometimes it’s even satisfying… but I haven’t got to that stage with this drawing yet. There’s still far to far to go, and what I mainly see is white paper and things that need fixing.


All images and text ©Christine Farmer Please contact me if you wish to use any of the images.

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