Monday, July 25, 2016

Drawing progress report 8 -- the roads become tangles

Previously on Art With a Needle....

My daily art drawings started to organize themselves into series as I deliberately explored various styles of abstract, doodle-like approaches.  I realized that I love to work in ink, and fastened on the finest Micron pen as my tool of choice.  I realized that "roads" made of two closely spaced lines were a favorite and recurring motif.

I had been making maplike drawings with lots of details such as rivers, beaches, mountain ranges and variously textured fields.  But one night I drew just roads, and they started to tangle up in the middle of the page.

Clearly a direction that I had to pursue! On subsequent days, the tangles started to fill more of the page and become more complicated.  And when one road met another, it would go over or under it like a freeway, not make a grade-crossing intersection.

If you draw a road across the entire page, then fill in with more and more roads, the first one will always appear "on top" because later roads will have to stop and "go underneath" to cross the first one.  So to make a more tangled-together or woven effect, you need to leave spaces in your early roads for subsequent roads to "go over."  Here's what a drawing looks like in the earliest stages:

I wasn't thinking of these as roads any more; now they looked more like threads or yarns.  How many times in my long career as a sewist have I had to untangle piles of thread or yarn that look just like this!

You can check out all my daily drawings at my daily art blog HERE and see what has happened with this approach in the last month.  The only problem was that I discovered that it was taking me two or three hours to make these very detailed tangles, and that's a lot more time than I am willing to invest in daily art.  So I decided I had to ration myself: tangles on days when I could draw while visiting with other people or watching TV, less detailed drawings (or smaller tangles) on days when I was working alone.  I had a blissful week of tangles recently during a family vacation, and could sit overlooking the lake, draw and talk all day!

And now that I've brought you up to date, I promise to write about fiber art for a while, not drawing.


  1. How inspiring. I must go doodle now.

  2. I love your tangles, especially the one with multi colors.

  3. But this is inspiring. I like where your 'roads' led you....back home to stitching. ;-)
    I found it interesting that you left your normal grid lines to a more organic line. Wonder how that would work to do the organic lines on your little squares?

    1. well, it would sure be a lot harder to piece tangled lines!! Judy Kirpich could probably do that; not sure I could, or would want to...

  4. You say drawing and fiber art like they have no connection with each other.