Saturday, June 7, 2014

Research is good, Practice must follow.

I've been spending a lot of time enjoying every ones responses to The Diva's challenges. I love seeing what is being created. Such imaginative designs and wonderful Pattern evolutions. I thank all the artists for sharing their efforts. You're all so awesome. In addition to participating in the challenges, many are maintaining Blogs. They make available a vast body of information, how-to's, and examples of their creations, and expand our exposure to the vast activity in this unique world. Sherlock Holmes would say, "The game is afoot." If you have a pen in your hand, and one pattern on your mind, you foot is in the "Game."

Well. I am guilty of enjoying this galactic array of resources to the neglect of the job at hand. Namely, learning how to participate intelligently and creatively in this art. Research is necessary to get the learning curve jump started but sooner-or-later there better be Pen and Sketchbook in front of me. One thing that I have been doing is to sketch bits, that I would like to remember, into my Sketchbook. Like taking notes in class, these sketches are invaluable "memory joggers," and so fun to look back on later. (Hey, Joggers for Bloggers.)

Here is a recent page from my Sketchbook. This is real free form and can, and occasionally does, spontaneously start the amalgamation of patterns into a coherent something or other.

The Lil' Nut reference in the upper left corner is to my Sister. She and I have been sharing the drawings we have been working on via email. That is a lot of fun and a great learning experience. That is putting practice and learning patterns in a more active light, and keeps us moving along.

So, I thought, inspired by my research marathon, I would like to try a format a little larger than the 3 1/2 inch square size of the standard Tile. I used an area one tile wide and two tiles high. Horizontal or vertical format, hard choice, each one calls out to be selected.  Tangling, by its nature, does not have an end goal at the beginning of creation. Which format to use can be made by a coin toss. I feel that one strong format decision maker is the directional flow you feel would be appropriate for the patterns you'd like to use. Sometime you feel like taking off, other times you just want to spread out. The Diva's challenges often give strong hints or indications as to a format choice to begin with. If it works out--, great--, if not, you're in for more fun and can try a different format.

Here is the piece that I finished this morning. I picked the Vertical format.

Patterns used: PokeRoot (modified), Bunzo, Nzeppel and Ahh (Maria Thomas), Ditto (Sue Jacobs), and SiWeed (Sadelle Wittshire). This was good practice, and there are some humdinger flaws in it.I liked working in the larger space.

I didn't know the name of the little smiling faced leaf head guys. I searched through the database, and found the PokeRoot pattern, which is pretty darn close to these Leaf Head characters. That is one draw back to using a pattern that you find in a finished piece of artwork. If it is one you are not familiar with already and know the original pattern by name, you have no clue as to it's origins. It is nice to be able to refer to a pattern by name when discussing it with other artists. 

In conclusion I am just an innocent bystander in the creation of this thing and any strangeness generated by this piece is free of charge.

That's it, folks, I'm off to draw.



  1. Hi David! I love your larger creation, and the pop of colour is always wonderful. Those leafy guys are often taught along with Pokeroot , and they are called Pokeleaf!
    Looking at your sketchbook made me remember to get mine out of the draw - my problem is I have too many, thinking that I would use one for this and one for that....but I think I may just go along with "one Sketch Book, come Journal, come whatever, at a time"! Have fun tangling!

    1. Hi Brenda. Thanks for the comments. For naming the PokeLeaf guys, you get a year supply of Atta-girls. I really appreciate that. (I think the Poke folks are the cutest things. I like patterns with a positive, happy approach, to their work.)

      I agree with your "One" sketchbook for everything approach. I'm numbering them in sequence and it will be a running collection of daily "Visual Notes." I like your idea of the Sketchbook morphing, as needed, into a Journal. I think you have created the, "Swiss Army Sketchbook." Cheers....

  2. I love this! I don't see any humdingers. I love the way you made Ahh so dense (I may use that myself), and the lines shading behind the Pokeleaves. Your Bunzo is great - not as hard and flashy as it is more often seen, kind of jumbled in a refreshing way. I also very much enjoy reading about your thoughts and process. Thanks for creating such an interesting blog.

    1. Hi Jennifer. I shall remain rather quiet on the subject of humingers, and I'm glad it didn't detract from the overall piece in an OMG way. The density of the Ahh pattern was an experiment that was moderately successful. I think the addition of graphite shading to the edges of it helped to some degree. Thanks and I enjoyed your comments...