FFF – and a JPG Index

I’m hoping the more I draw these three beauties (I keep thinking about David Hockney pulling the car over to draw grasses and weeds, knowing he’d use those shapes and colors later in paintings), the more likely I am to be able to express their distinctness. (That’s a hope, not a surety.)

While recognizing a stalling mechanism (to be harsh) or more practice (to be kind), below are the first two thumbnail pages of some of the photos I’ve collected for reference. At least now I can easily find, by JPG number on my computer, the suggestion of a pose I need.

Long ago I read that the writer John Irving called tasks related to, but not the real work, “bookshelf building activities.” Pursuits allowing time to think without pressure and with pleasure, and providing what big tasks need – small intervening rewards of completion.

FFF Index p

FFF Index p 2


A November Project

This fall it inspired me to watch the participants in The Workroom outline their projects and follow through – discovering power and energy from small steps as part of a bigger whole. And now November begins, a whole month at home, a month ending in favorite festivities – but inviting a project.

The mother of my young friend made drawings for her Workroom project, and those, combined with reading Martin Gayford’s book, “A Bigger Message: Conversations with David Hockney,” put drawings on my mind even more than usual. Hockney has a complicated relationship with photography but an ongoing, long-lasting passion for drawing. He’d approve of drawing for drawing’s sake – not to illustrate necessarily, but to explore.

Then, on a recent Design*Sponge podcast, I heard ceramicist Molly Hatch say that online resources from museums around the world are amazing. So the thought occurred – I could spend November at the Victoria and Albert, London’s world-famous museum of art and design, full of objects from real life, beautiful things, interesting things, inspiring curiosities to draw.

The V&A website offers “subject hubs” for each collection from architecture and design to fashion and textiles. Many of the 1,828,876 museum objects and pieces of art are online with a photo and a written description. Without printing, I could draw from their photos just by browsing the collections. (I wrote to the Museum and received a polite email back, granting permission to use the photos in their collection for reference.)

Sometimes visiting a museum sets up an initial overwhelm, and I’m glad to discover some one area where things have a relationship. A similar experience happened when I began to wander the corridors of the online collections, clicking on individual images, considering categories. I’m always curious about flowers in decoration – both disparaged and beloved – so, in the end, I decided to limit my looking to objects with flowers.

Wanting both a goal (something The Workroom participants were good at setting and achieving) and daily practice, I decided on a post a day. But it seems a lot to dump an email a day into the inboxes of loyal subscribers – so I’ll post a week’s worth next Friday.

Or you can see what treasures I find by following me on Facebook (www.facebook.com/gilmorekaty), or here next week, whichever works for you. And thank you for helping me be accountable!

Journal - Nov Project  Planning