Of all the lessons learned by walking in the shoes of my fellow studio members over the course of the past 41 days of exercises, the one I am most embarrassed to say I discovered is that I have abandoned a tool that I have so heavily invested in but apparently disregarded. As I pondered the subject of this final task, I ran down my list of obvious and not so obvious days to celebrate with an illustration. There is something doing most every day of the year, but unless naturally and organically inclined (state of the mind and focus, not of the earth in this case) I tend to lean to the classic and traditional. For the longest time I was set on Halloween, Day of the Dead, and all the fun that comes with it—just no crazy clowns. I did some work on it, because I love it and it was the time to do it. But when I realized this post would most likely see the light of day (does the internet have windows) well after the candy was eaten, I wasn’t as devoted to the day as I was when I had the idea. Thanksgiving? No. It could be fun but I just wasn’t there yet. Christmas was too obvious from the original exercise and I do a lot of Christmas material every year—I wanted this to be a bit of a new venture. So as I was finishing up our looking back on the original exercises and looking forward to what everyone would do I fell upon New Year’s Day and the god Janus. He is a long time favorite from my days in Latin classes decades ago, which is odd, as I have typically avoided the year-end recap and resolutions for the year to come. And there was the overlooked lesson, the frustrating moment when I found that I have, for some time now, rushed to the internet quicker than I do to a book. My studio has an entire case devoted to research books, symbol books and random non-fiction works stuffed with material. And they made them so easy to read on pages, they are quite amazing. So as I cracked them all open to “J” and looked up some words in an actual dictionary (the definitions seem more important on paper) I found all that I needed to start this last exercise. Looking forward, I hope I am still using them.
Art by Dominick Santise.
Exercise in Book: A Partridge in a Pear Tree, p 106/107
To celebrate the launch of Veronica Lawlor’s A Drawing A Day Sketchbook Skool klass, the studio 1482 members are doing the exercises from our book One Drawing A Day: A Six Week Course Exploring Creativity with Illustration and Mixed Media. Join us on Facebook!