Destiny :: Destinée

“Each man had only one genuine vocation – to find the way to himself…. His task was to discover his own destiny – not an arbitrary one – and to live it out wholly and resolutely within himself. Everything else was only a would-be existence, an attempt at evasion, a flight back to the ideals of the masses, conformity and fear of one’s own inwardness.” 
― Hermann Hesse

As I was trying to draw this student, who thankfully had his back to me, it made me nervous… nervous that he would just walk away, nervous that he would find out that I was attempting to draw him and nervous that someone would be watching me drawing him. Why does drawing people make me so nervous? Perhaps because I am a private person that does not like prying into other people’s lives? My mind kept going back to the question that Herman Hesse is asking… what is this young man’s destiny? What lies on the road ahead of him? Will he be happy? Famous? Have a hard life? A good life? No one knows… does he?

 En dessinant cet élève, qui heureusement était de dos à moi, j’étais très nerveuse… nerveuse qu’il partirait tout d’un coup et que mon modèle ne serait plus là, peur qu’il s’aperçoive que j’étais en train de le dessiner, peur que quelqu’un d’autre me voit le dessiner… combien d’angoisses peuvent surgir en si peu de temps? Pourquoi est-ce que dessiner des personnes sur le vif m’angoisse tant? Un manque d’expérience peut-être? Étant une personne privée, je n’aime pas m’introduire dans la vie des gens. Mon esprit retournait aux mots de Herman Hesse… quelle est sa destinée à ce jeune homme? Quel sera le trajet de sa vie? Heureuse? Facile? Difficile? Personne le sait… le sait-il?

Paper: Moleskine Sketchbook
Fountain Pen: Pilot Prera F
Ink: Noodlers Lexington Gray
Colours: Prussian Blue, Raw Sienna and Burnt Sienna



Quirky Tree :: Deux arbres pour un

In the parking lot of JAC today a quick drawing of a beautiful oak tree and just behind it, some pine tree limbs showing through at odd angles.

Aujourd’hui, dans le stationnement, un croquis rapide d’un immense chêne et d’un pin qui se cache derrière lui… et donnant des branches à angle bien comiques.

Paper: Hand•book pocket landscape
Fountain Pen: Lamy calligraphy
Ink: Black Carbon Ink


Thoughts on learning :: Pensées sur l’apprentissage

A guilty conscience needs to confess. A work of art is a confession.
Albert Camus

When I subscribe to a workshop or a watercolour class, it seems as though my creative voice disappears. Is it because I am trying to create a void where the teachers’  input has a place to go to? Is it because I need to tame it? Or give it a place for experimentation? I do know that if I hold on to my “own voice” too much, I will get nothing out of this class nor of this teacher… so I have to let go, and let it happen… even though I cannot paint anything worthwhile at the moment… humph!

Ceci est une peinture que j’ai réalisée il y a très peu de temps. À chaque fois que je prends des cours ou un atelier de peinture, ma voix créative disparaît… serait-ce qu’elle veut laisser la place à la nouvelle façon du prof afin de l’apprivoiser? De laisser la place à l’expérimentation? Je sais que si j’y tiens mordicus, je n’apprendrai rien!. Par contre, je sais que je dois être patiente, car ces temps-ci, je n’en ai pas en abondance -)

Paper: Larolan Sketchbook
Pen: Pilot Flexi Grip EF
Ink: Noodlers Lexington Grey


Contour Drawing :: Dessin contour

Today my students and I went outside on this sunny fall day to draw trees for my Typography & Design course. Trees are this week’s theme and I will be giving them a different theme to draw every week of the semester. Can’t wait to see the results at the end of the semester.

The students’ drawings were outstanding, considering that they had never drawn a contour drawing (except for one student)… for those of you who do not know how to do this it is quite simple to comprehend. Once you put your pen on the paper, it cannot be lifted until the entire drawing is finished… takes a certain concentration to keep it there. Of course, there were a few slips, but everyone did amazing work! I am very proud of them. This type of drawing gives a very fluid and lively type of drawing… it is not detail oriented. Once I got home I decided to put in a bit of watercolour paints in this sketchbook, which is not really made for this, and gives very grungy results.

Aujourd’hui mes élèves et moi sommes sortis dehors pour dessiner des arbres… le thème de la semaine. Chaque semaine je vais donner un nouveau thème à mes élèves et ils devront dessiner ce thème sur le courant de la session pour le cours de Typography & Design. Je leur ai demandé de faire un dessin contour… pour ceux qui ne connaissent pas ceci veut simplement dire qu’une fois la plume sur le papier, elle ne peut plus être levée… le dessin au complet doit être finalisé avant que la plume se lève du papier. Ceci donne des résultats qui sont très fluides et vivants — voir grunge. 

Paper: Moleskine Sketchbook (large)
Pen: Pigma Micron Pen 01
Colours: Yellow Orchre and Rose Madder Genuine



Vignette of a Room with a View :: Vignette d’un point de vue

As I get older, I seem to long for a room with a view… or many rooms with a view, from very high up, overlooking mountains and lakes, where you can look at the horizon and peruse. So here is one view, from one of the roofs at John Abbott College where huge cranes are setup, doing whatever they do best. This is a vignette as the four corners are not painted in and there is a cruciform shape… or the presence of horizontal and vertical lines that lead to a focal point.

Voici une vignette d’un des toits à John Abbott… il y a tellement de construction à John Abbott depuis des années, que la vue d’une grue est rendue normale… pourtant! Une vignette est une peinture ou une photographie qui a une absence d’objets ou de couleurs aux quatre coins et que les objets verticaux et horizontaux se rejoignent pour créer une forme cruciforme… donnant un point focal. 

Paper: Larolan 5.5″ x 8.5″
Watercolors: Winsor & Newton, Daniel Smith
Ink: Lexington Grey