June 17, 2016

Some pictures that didn't make it

I've been plugging away on my illustrations for The Engineeress, and have finished or planned out all but one (maybe two) of the images. Altogether I hope to have six, and then I think I will send it to some magazines that might like to publish original writing and art together. It is an abnormal format for adult lit, and would be risky for a book publisher, but a magazine might go for it.

I'm feeling a bit sad, though, because I may need to abandon the idea of painting this project, despite having painted two already.

I have found less than two hours to paint since I moved here. I do the vast majority of the childcare, and after the kids are in bed, I still have much to do in the form of finding summer camps, children's activities, etc.

It is very challenging in an environment where you know few people, little of the terminology or customs. My time is rarely my own (- except times like when I eat too much sweet dessert while interviewing a possible new babysitter, and can't sleep from all the sugar!)

Painting is time-consuming, and can't be fitted in around other things like drawing can. And, frankly, after all these years of drawing-because-it's-portable, I'm also better with a marker than a paintbrush anyhow.

Well, whatever. I'll just do it twice if that is what it takes.

I enjoy this project very much. I have learned that in my process, the actual production comes at the end. I don't enjoy re-writing or re-painting, so I prefer to do a lot of preliminary thinking and sketching, and a bit of researching, before settling down to do one kick at the final product. I'm not one for the process espoused by many of my creative writing teachers of the late nineties who thought the story was best started right away, and re-written until it seemed done. Ugh.

The couple at the top are imagining a future baby, and it is a nice enough idea, I guess, but it is couples-oriented. As the story is about a woman and the lonely journey of infertility, it has the wrong concept. These two sketchbook pages also give another idea I had, but I decided in the end not to show the labour in the story, since again the story is about anticipation and disappointment, not the act of giving birth. The flower is a freebie, drawn at the restaurant on the corner of my street, at which I eat several times a month.

June 4, 2016


Ada, May 2016

It's often easier to express things to children visually. This sketch describes to my almost seven-year-old where she has lots of yummy germs!