Cherry Blossom

Today, I tried something different. I usually draw with a pen, a fineliner. And that kind of pen always stains in combination with paint or water. But today I wanted that!

I am kind of obsessed with mortality or death, or both. To cross over to the other side, die, be reborn or to just disappear is such an interesting thing I just cannot get it out of my head. In fact, my exhibition is about dying, crossing over to ‘the other side’.

I have been to China this year. A lot of parks have cherry blossom in their gardens. Cherry blossom is mostly associated with Japan, but in China you can find it a lot in the South. It has a special bond with mortality, in that way that de Japanese think life is like cherry blossom: pretty, but short blooming.

The cherry blossom can be white, pink or a dark fuchsia. I loved the almost-white ones, with a pink undertone. First I drew a flower with black fineliner, and put some pink over it. Then some white, to make it more fragile. It made me think of baroque or rococo flowers!

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After that I started to draw a branch in fineliner, also the red:

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I filled it with white and blended it, to make it soft. If you look closely you still see the little lines of the branches through the paint!

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Reading and eating

The holidays are always good for eating, talking to family and friends and for working too little… So after a long time of working all the time, spare time is very special to me. And I wanted to draw a lot, wanted to write a lot, just for me. Not having to think about the exhibition or about making money. But I did not do anything!! I read, most of the time, wich stirred a lot of my brain. And now there is a lot of new work brewing in my mind.

So no new drawings or paintings in this blog, but I recommend you to read: http://www.theguardian.com/books/2012/sep/09/will-gompertz-what-looking-at

It is fantastic!

Happy holidays!!

Colour

The drawings I make are in black and white. But because they are made for a children’s book, I want them to have some colour in it. Today I started with the first one, a printed copy of a drawing. Only when I am really satisfied with the colors I will fill them in in the original.

I started with the thing I knew how to color:  the coat and the boots and also the pink flowers on the scarf. But everything else was unknown.

Usually I am very scared of using color in my work. I wear black and purple almost everyday and a lot of colors don’t appeal to me. So I wanted to colour very boldly in this exercise, just to see if it would work. Here’s the result:

Afbeelding

Not very hard to  imagine that I don’t, don’t, DON’T like this!! Too bitchy, too bright, too loud, just too colourful!! It draws attention to all the wrong places: the wall, not important, the yellow coat, not even in the story, the green bench, why?!!

I know this is my own fault, but I don’t have a good eye for a lot of color at once, I guess. I compensate that with a good view on composition, I lot of imagination and I steady hand.

So I tried again, in a colour scheme of only 3 colours: red, pink, green/greenish blue. Here are the results:

 

Afbeelding

This is much better. The bright jacket with the pink stars draws your attention to the most important thing in this picture: the red jacket, the puddle underneath the boots and the dripping from the jacket. When you look further you will recognize other things from the book (when you have read it, it will be there soon, online): the scarf with the flowers, the rain coat from father, the window in the door.

What do YOU think is best?  

It has to have a name…

I’m working on an exhibition. One that has to have a ‘name’. I always like things to be named, but to give an exhibition a name get’s me to another level of fright.

I saw an exhibition once that was called: ‘Nothing’. And it was. It really was! And that sucked, because the artist wasn’t giving it a name to be ridiculed about afterwards.

So I need a good name for it, because City Hall wants me to. But not some name I didn’t think about properly. So I started with what I am making. What am I showing?

What:

Birds
Branches
Children’s book
Polaroid
Shadows
Writing
Drawings

I started thinking about working titles, but I soon got stuck in the fear of choosing wrong. I asked a friend to start associating freely. She came up with a whole list and I added some of my own.

Working titles:
Blackbird
Shadow image
Quill
Horizon
Around the corner
The actual reason
hidden
hide and seek
Behind a door
soldier
dune
fart
cover
Something fell behind
Underlying
Mystic
Birds
Flying
Wings
Clouds
Sea wind
Thermic
Shit on a roof
Gutter rumble
Ticking on the roof
Screeching
Communicating
Whistle
From tree to ree
Nest
Birds
Ballet dansers
Swan lake
Eggs
Jealous of flying
Bird perspective
Helicopter view
Floating
Diving
Lift off
White
Black
Peter pan
Sun
Time
Sundial
Season
LongShort
Foggy
Sharp
A source
Plato
silhouette
Sharply
Defined
Contrast
Store
Brings truth
Confronting
Man Woman Sunset
Coin
Invisible
Veiled
Make up, what you don’t see
Gestallt
Between the lines
Who sees this, sees black and white

But I have chosen a name! And it is NOT in the list above. Of course it can still be ridiculed (don’t be afraid), but it has everything I need, everything that I need to giva away in a name for my work. Hopefully it will make people want to come in the door and see my work.

It is a Dutch name, because I live in the Netherlands. But in English it works well too.

Welcome to my exhibition: “Anderzijds” or (in English) “On the other Hand“, opening March 2014!

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© Edda Grol ‘Titel nog onbekend, detail’, 2013

The way I work

When I want to begin with a new drawing, I start with thinking.
What do I want to show? What not? What does a tree actually look like? And ants? And a puddle? And how can I show a puddle without actually drawing a puddle? How does reflection work?

When I’ve thought it through, I start. But because I do not work with a pencil, only with a pen or with ink, I can’t make changes after I drew something.

Making a mistake is starting the whole thing all over again.

This sometimes makes me stop in the middle of a line to draw something else, so the line that comes in front of the other is not crossed by the other line. I sometimes see it as a game; who is smarter, me or the drawing? And sometimes, I lose.

But today, I won. And this is the result, one of the drawings for the children’s book (detail).

 

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© Edda Grol ‘Titel nog onbekend’, 2013