For reasons best known to my mother practically nothing remains of my childhood aside from one or two family treasures in the form of a tapestry, a few framed photographs, a slide trombone, and one or two little ornaments. But despite their eradication I know I drew a lot of pictures as a child as I distinctly remember drawing them. Now, whatever you may be thinking my mother did not discard my artwork out of spite – just that she was an extremely house proud and tidy woman, and once I had revealed my evident lack of talent, and that I clearly was no budding genius with the pen, there seemed little point in encouraging me further by leaving the stuff laying around.
However I have always loved to draw and take a deep satisfaction from the simple pleasure of capturing my world on paper. For me drawing is a form of meditation, whisking me to wherever my mind desires to wander.
Over the years I have from time to time dabbled with color (pastels, watercolors etc.) but I am invariably and inevitably drawn back to the bold contrasting form-driven discipline of pen and ink. As a stone sculptor I cannot invest too much concern over the color of my work – that is decided by the makeup of stone itself long before I arrive on the scene, but what I do find endlessly fascinating and compelling are the sweeping lines of the rim of a bowl, created when two complex curves collide, as with The Maiden Collection’s 41 sculptures, or, when these same elements combined en mas in a bas relief carving to create a three dimensional depth-deceiving painting in stone.
I actually didn’t make the connection between my fondness for the art of pen and ink drawing and act of sculpting until one day a few years back when I found myself making a template with which I use to carve accurate stonework. It suddenly dawned on me that these templates were actually line drawings in themselves. Of course! Stone sculpting boils down to the art of creating these edges – they go hand in hand, no wonder I was drawn to both disciplines as they both demand the exact placement of the hard edge, and both are unforgiving task masters! There’s no fudging a hard stone edge, just as there is no use for an unsteady hand with line drawing.
Any and all of these drawings may one day find themselves serving as a template. At the time of writing (early May 2013) I am still undecided as to where to begin – as I’m just now in the process of readying the workshop for another season, but somewhere along the line an idea will kick in, and you may just see any one of these drawings pop up, in whole or in part, here and there throughout the coming summer.