Tuesday, July 23, 2013

July Observations: In Another World

The end of July draws nigh and I've been working hard, but alas I have nothing to show of my main projects.  I am excited, though, to say that I have gotten some significant work done on my graphic novel and I'll most likely have something to show you all next month. I'll keep plugging away, but I can actually see the half way mark in my progress, which is exciting for me. I still have so much to do on it, but I'm making head way and my plans for next year's promotion of my graphic novel might actually be doable. Yay. So, please keep coming back for updates on that! My Avengers Project isn't going as smoothly, however. The Cap is being quite stubborn and there is something about the piece that just isn't speaking to me. It is kind of like beating your head against the wall. After repeated experiences with the lack of inspiration, I've finally learned to just let it go and leave it. It is no use in trying to push something because you end up just wasting your time. I've even done a little pictured demonstration of what happens for everyone's amusement.

Haha. So, I'll probably move on to the green rage monster Bruce Banner and then come back to The Cap later. It's for the best. But now to switch gears on this post; I've been doing some sketches that I've posted on my Pintrest/Twitter, which have been of nymphs and faeries. Just letting my imagination roam free while listening to a lot of Carbon Based Lifeforms (a Swedish ambient music group). Probably one of my top favorite songs ever, though, is a song called "Stolen Child" by Loreena McKennit. It is a song about a faerie taking away a child, which is a common myth surrounding faeries and their mischievous ways. I find it haunting and beautiful, and I often find myself loving this idea of being beckoned away to another world. Whether it be faeries, sirens, the white rabbit, or some other elfin creature, I'm fascinated by this aspect of being drawn by something mysterious or alluring into another world (or death in some cases, haha.) There is such excitement and beauty in being drawn to another realm, to pass through "the grey-rain curtain"of this world to "a far green country" beyond (Lord of the Rings pg. 1007). It reminds me of this verse from Hebrews 11:13-16 "These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. For people who speak thus make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. If they had been thinking of that land from which they had gone out, they would have had opportunity to return. But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city." It is the idea of another realm beyond this world and of being part of that Otherworld so as to have longing of a stranger in a land not our own, then finding ourselves drawn away, called away by a Voice mysterious as it is beautiful; a Voice surrounded by "clouds and thick darkness," "flashes of lightning, and rumblings and peals of thunder" with "a sea of glass, like crystal" (Psalm 97:2, Revelation 4:5-6). How does this translate into faeries, nymphs, and sirens you may ask? Well, I think C.S. Lewis says it quite brilliantly: "We do not want merely to see beauty, though, God knows, even that is bounty enough. We want something else which can hardly be put into words - to be united with the beauty we see, to pass into it, to receive it into ourselves, to bathe in it, to become part of it. That is why we have peopled air and earth and water with gods and goddesses and nymphs and elves - that, though we cannot, yet these projections can enjoy in themselves that beauty, grace, and power of which Nature is the image" (The Weight of Glory pg. 42-43). With this in mind, I shall always continue to be fascinated by the otherwordly, always following that White Rabbit down the rabbit hole to another world.

So all these ideas swirling around in my head produced these two illustrations I've done in pencil (with some Photoshop magic!):

Come away oh human child
To the waters and the wild
With a faerie hand in hand
For the world's more full of weeping
Than you can understand

"Stolen Child" Loreena McKennit.
Observations in Kensington Gardens
This second one is more sci-fi, surrealist in nature and it was largely inspired by Carbon Based Lifeform's "Kensington Gardens," thus the name. Listening to the song will really help in getting the atmosphere. You'll notice, though, how in both these images I have the veiny, branch-like patterns. One of the things that fascinates me about nature is how the world of the micro and the world of the macro have similar patterns. Whether it is our own arteries and veins, membranes and molecules, to nature's branches, foliage, and creatures, to the makings of a star or galaxy, there are such beautiful similarities in design. I love this aspect to our Universe and love the idea of blurring the line between micro and macro in my artwork. This especially comes out in "Observations" where the scale of things aren't exactly clear. I'll probably want to experiment more with this idea in my artwork, to see what other fascinating concepts I can come up with.

Well, that is what I have for July. Please check out either my Twitter or Pinterest if you are interested in more of my elfin sketches. (Yes, this is what I think about all day.) Don't forget to check back soon for updates on my graphic novel! God bless.

He makes everything beautiful in its time . . . Ecclesiastes 3:11