Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Some of the Details Are Sketchy- Revenge Sketchbook

Sometimes when I am happiest I create the saddest things. Maybe it is the only time I feel I can bravely look at some parts of life without getting mired in it. This season I did not set out to draw discomforting things, it just came by assignment through the assigned Sketchbook Project theme revenge. Later I will probably post the whole thing nicely scanned, but for now here are a few of the pages I drew over Christmas. They are in story order. You can click the image for an enlargement on my flickr page.

As I drew this image of the twin towers I was surprised by how moved I still am by the tragedy. When I entered FIT as a freshman I could still smell the smoke. When I left as a senior there were still pictures of the missing posted at the hospital. I just want to pluck the plane out of the sky and stop the further ensuing loss.

Something I love about drawing is that your subconscious has a louder voice through your hands. I learned that in my heart of hearts I don't want the lion to lay down with the lamb, I want lions to be transfigured into lambs. That is inadequate because it does not rectify wrongs. That is why Christ is shown in Revelation as both lion and lamb. He combines perfect innocence and self-sacrifice with perfect strength and justice. Charles Manley Hopkins mentioned a lamb-lion in one of his "Terrible Sonnets." This could maybe just as easily be a deep appeal for the balance of justice and mercy. By the way: Does anyone know why heraldic animals always face to their right, our left? I wanted it the other way for the flow of the book, and it doesn't exist. Had to flip the lions I referenced in my mind.

For the daughter of a heavy equipment salesman I am woefully ignorant of the hind ends of tractors. This is me trying to make my ignorance look artistic!

Here it is clear this family group needs rescuing, but vague as to what from. I can't tell if they are cowering from something inside or outside. The burglar bars give the picture a trapped/enclosed feeling, yet the locks on the door seem flimsy to me, as if the family is jailed but not protected. I couldn't bring myself to fully detail their pain, so there is a lot of shadow inside of their huddle.

I am uncertain whether this is finished yet. Guerrilla warriors, tough guys all. They are always far far too young, it seems to me. It was easy and reassuring to draw the truck-- I am proud of the near-perfect Toyota emblem on the front! It was as easy to draw it as it is to make a clever outline as to the political and cultural reasons for these crusades, but how can we wrap our human minds around the vengeance and destruction? How can we learn that these problems don't have crisp Toyota-outline answers with parts to assemble in order? I don't know that it is possible.

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