MoMA Drawing a Day Challenge – Day 7

I think this is the last day, but then several people have turned up now so it’s the first day for them, assuming it’s possible to upload an image.

Anyway, this is technically if not actually my last and I’ve gone back to my preferred scale, A1.

Soft pastels on primed cartridge. A1.

These two are friends; the black one is almost two and, with his sister, succeeded in getting himself adopted by the tabby who is five. Along with her sister and Big George who is almost ten, they are all rescues and they’ve been the yowling, chirping, purring light in my locked down life. Three cheers for cats. Three cheers for dogs. Three cheers for all our pets who, without knowing it, held so many of us together over this dreadful time and gave us a reason to get up in the morning.

MoMA Drawing a Day Challenge: Day 6

Something odd has happened at the MoMA site, assuming there’s nothing odd about being the only one posting anything and talking to yourself there for a week. This new odd is first the site has stopped permitting contractions, the ‘it’s’, ‘I’ll’ ‘couldn’t‘ variety, and second is it either isn’t accepting any more images or there are three drawings of a tent up there somewhere I can’t see.

Anyway. Tent. Here it is.

Made in acrylic pens on glossy photo paper. The medium flows and you can blend it while it’s wet but then if you put another layer of colour onto a dried layer (it dries very fast) and try to blend, it scratches out leaving a kind of grunge effect. These pens come in various sizes; the block colour was done using 5mm tips and some of the tiny marks with extra fine tip pens.

This may be it then. Perhaps their seven days started before mine.

MoMA Drawing a Day challenge – Day 5

In the spirit of Mastermind, I’ve started so I’ll finish. Today it’s a courgette which followed two disastrous apples. Let’s be kind and call it stylised.

Drawn in 8b pencil (until it broke), coloured pencil, coloured charcoal, and soft pastels.

If this exercise has achieved anything, it’s the confirmation that A5 scale is really not where I’m happiest. A2 at least and with some thick paint, a yard or two of discarded net curtain, and a palette knife; that will do me nicely! Two to go.

MoMA Drawing-a-Day challenge, Day 4

Coming up to a year since our first lockdown and over a year since I met with friends, visited another town, or went to a shop, I’m painting pebbles again. Last year, I made them to brighten up the lane for people passing by, and for them to take home if they wanted to. I put up bunting through the branches of one of my trees and strung it across my path. That’s still there – or a third version of it is – along with some solar lights that were of very little use in the winter but are coming into their own now there’s some actual sol.

Now I’m painting more pebbles; bright green and yellow with gold sweeps and ‘filigree’ on the top surface to bring in the spring.

Soft pastels with finger blending and acrylic pen. Drawing anything on top of soft pastel is ridiculously hard – it masks the surface, creates even more dust, bungs up whatever pointed instrument you’re drawing with, and generally behaves uncooperatively as though really you, the artist, should regard it as enough in and of itself. Precious, I call it.

I’ve been on my own there in MoMAland but someone popped in to say hello yesterday evening. No more drawings though so my claim to a one-person MoMA exhibition must surely be in the bag.

MoMA drawing-a-day challenge, Day 3

Bit of a struggle this one; hay fever hit so I have about as much spare capacity as a Vespa in the way of a Tesla. Still, sometimes that helps because there’s barely enough wherewithall to choose a medium, never mind get tied up in over working it. This is a corner of my studio with the bunting that’s been there pretty much since there was a roof on it.

Biro, soft pastels, and water.

As a contextual note, I’m doing this in response to an email from MoMA via Cousera which administered the course I took.

And so far there’s no one else posting anything.

So if this keeps up the whole seven days, I can claim a one-person show at MoMA?

Thought so.

MoMA drawing-a-day challenge, Day 2

Looking out at the same view, this time with some movement in the shape of a cat. I made two very quick drawings; one in oil pastel, the other in willow charcoal. The willow charcoal went on the MoMA site.

Oil pastel stick. The faint marks underneath are leakage from yesterday’s garden drawing.
Willow charcoal stick.

I chose this one because it’s really a series of movements across the garden in front of the studio doors which now give me such a vista I can follow a whole trail of cats doing cat stuff. And, although the oil pastel has a kind of solidity to it, I like the simplicity of the line and the greater fluidity. Essence de cat, as it were.

MoMA drawing-a-day challenge, Day 1

It’s only a week, not the 40 years the inspiration for this put in! José Antonio Suárez Londoño has apparently made a drawing every day as part of his art practice and the Museum of Modern Art in Manhattan has put out the call for artists to give this a go.

Inks, watercolour pencils, and soft pastels in an A5 sketch book. This is the ‘new view’ from inside my new studio. There’s tidying up to do out there, and settling in to do in here but it’s already wonderful with its all-round light that changes with the hours, its LEDS that make evening working more possible, and its smooth vinyl floor that accommodates a tiny tennis ball for the cats to chase.

How did I get this call to arms? I did an online course on post war abstract painting with MoMA a year or so back. History in small lectures, videos, and some have-a-go practice. I definitely got more from that than from a book.

MoMA, Manhattan https://www.moma.org/