So far in 2021 I’ve drawn every day. There was only one day that a “dated” drawing wasn’t received (January 17th I believe) but I probably completed another drawing, or I did two the next day or something. Either way, I’m drawing in a productive patch. It makes it easier to do the next one, but it also means I’m worried about stopping in case I fall into another phase of non-drawing. I had periods in 2021 when I only drew once a week or once every two weeks. in December I only made a handful of sketches all month. In the period from January 1st to February 3rd I made 36 drawings, some of which are double pages (in color) and some more very detailed drawings of places in northern France (I started another Virtual Sketch Tour, this time De France, and the drawings are larger than on mine in the UK from 2020). At the same time I started running again. I ran a lot last year. and really improving my time in midsummer, but then the forest fires came and the air was too dangerous to go outside and the running was suffering. I have been running again since January and have run a total of 44.5 miles 19 runs (should be a few more by the end of this morning, I’m up early again and the schedule for the early morning preparatory work is “write / draw/run / prepare for work “) (or more precisely” being listened to by cats/writing / being listened to by cats / giving in and feeding/drawing early / still being listened to by cats, even though they are already / run / tell cats, they should be stuck, they have already been fed, but they say yes, we are hungry again / get ready for work “). So yes, I try to be more active in the exercises, both drawing and running, hoping to stay fit both ways. You need to train your drawing muscles just like anyone else. I sometimes see sketches that I made after not sketching for a while and I realize that I was out of shape.
Anyway, this sketch was one of those lunchtime sketches that I had to make around keep drawing, just a drive downtown to draw a building. I chose this one, which I’ve drawn a couple of times over the past few years, at Smith Funeral Home. Not a great subject at this time, probably, a funeral home (and I know people who have died in the last month or so and that was probably heavy on my mind), but it’s an interestingly shaped building. I first drew it in October 2010 in my Davis Moleskine, a long accordion sketchbook (from the first USK Symposium) filled with Davis drawings. Wow, that was a different one of those over a decade ago, but you know how much I hate standing there with the accordion book, they tease me more than other people. Others can stand or sit there, with both sides of the accordion gently falling on their side like angels on a Renaissance ceiling (what?) While trying to draw with the one I look like Frank Spencer struggling with a library. Although in the sketch below (from 2010) you can see that I carefully folded the pages in the book and added little clips (that’s why I drew the book on the page, actually, to make it look like I knew what I was doing when I was never actually able to flatten the pages and was upset to start this project, which I drew with a brown Pitt liner and gray marker, all of which seemed fine at the time, but are not my usual tools – I hadn’t quite figured out yet. the UM-151 brown-black uniball sign, although I will say the Pitt eyeliner moved better on the waxy Moleskine paper than the Micron) The funny thing about that project is that I left those gaps at the top and bottom part so as not to have I had to draw so much (these took longer than a similar-sized sketch in the watercolor notebooks, for some reason), but also because I was going to write stories about Davis in those areas like the Bayeux tapestry or something. He was obsessed with the Bayeux T. Glad I didn’t. I added various foreground objects like trees, streetlights, stop signs to use as transition markers from one drawing to another. The whole project was inspired by the recent work of Paul Heaston. long shape drawing of Main Street in Bozeman Montana, but abandoned the ‘whole street’ idea myself immediately (though I did something like that of Hutchison Drive in 2016) (and could still do one of 5th or 2nd St at some point
Why draw so much? My excuse has always been that I am recording the world I am in, so I remember it later, and now I have been in this particular world so long that I am just recording the changes, making a kind Public service maybe, but I think it’s really so I can have something I made (other than a messy bedroom) to show during my time here Books, CDs, even soccer jerseys are things that someone else won’t cares about when you leave, but I guess a sketchbook collection could be a more personal leave-behind I don’t know, it’s a little early in the morning for this kind of thinking.