Art of the Socially Distant

I hope everyone is doing okay. Today I’m posting a couple of things I did over the weekend. I hope you enjoy them.

red_bird_web
Red Bird, 2020, ink & watercolour on 300lb coldpress, 8 x 10 inches

 

I found a little scribble in an old sketchbook and decided to turn it into a drawing. The watercolour gives the piece the feel of a children’s book illustration. One of the faces is even smiling, albeit a little wistfully, which is fairly unusual in my art.

yellow_skull_web
Yellow Skull, ink on archival illustration board, 10 x 8 inches

This piece was more or less freestyle. I love playing with the hard silhouette of a profile. This character’s head has the shape of a flea. The foreground character was meant to evoke a death’s head moth.

Both of these pieces are available.

  • Richard

The Darkling Lands

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The Darkling Lands is a new 40 page perfect bound book, which reproduces 28 of my images and includes a new weird tale titled Ecesis. I posted 10 copies on my webshop yesterday, and I am pleased to report they went quickly, but there will be more copies available in about a week. As I noted in the book’s introduction The Darkling Lands of the title, first appeared as a setting in my short story Magpie’s Ladder. The project itself is conceived as a kind of inexpensive portfolio of images from the past few years, selected because they work together. You may have noticed that this is Volume 1. My intention is to create future volumes that follow the same pattern of art and writing, and always include something new with each volume. I hope you enjoy it.

  • Richard

Crown of Coral

coral_crown_etsy
Crown of Coral, 14″ x 10,” watercolour on 140lb Arches Coldpress

This past week was productive. I handed in all of the artwork for Magpie’s Ladder (my forthcoming short story collection) to PS Publishing. Unfortunately I can’t show it to you yet, though if you follow me on Instagram you might have glimpsed some of the work in progress.

Instead, I am showing you this new watercolor piece called Crown of Coral. After a long, monochromatic winter I am in the mood for some color work. I hope you enjoy this piece. I have made it available on my Etsy site for a low price.

Work continues on edits for my new novel, Tailor of Echoes.

Richard

Off the Grid, Sort of but not Really

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This is an iPhone snap of a watercolor I did a few weeks ago. I plan to do a version of it in oil in due course. It was necessary to suspend my use of oil for a while as the products I was using led to some pretty trippy – but ultimately not fun – ocular migraines. Since then, I have added some odorless oils to my supply cabinet. I’m at the point where I can resume. I really like working in oil – though if you are familiar with my monochromatic ink work you would be forgiven for assuming otherwise. I’ll post my progress here.

At the moment, I am taking a break from social media, specifically Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, so this blog is your best bet if you are interested in my new work. My reasons for stepping back are largely related to a desire to enhance my productivity, but they are also related to the attitudes the designers of these platforms have for privacy, data harvesting, and surveillance. Time will tell how these issues are resolved but for now I plan to be more circumspect in the use of the platforms (though in full disclosure these blog posts are shared to Twitter).

If these issues are of interest to you also, I recommend:

The Age off Surveillance Capitalism by Shoshana Zuboff

World Without Mind by Franklin Foer

Zucked by Roger McNamee

Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport

These books have all been published recently and give excellent overviews of the issues from slightly different perspectives.

– Richard

Orphans

I haven’t posted here for a while because I’m working on some larger projects. In the meantime thought it would be fun to round up a few orphan works. These works were created more or less as materials or technique exercises, or explorations of certain ideas. Hope you enjoy this peek at my process.

Watcher_web
Watcher,  2018, ink with watercolour tint, 10″ x 8″

This drawing done for fun. It is a brush and ink drawing with a watercolour tint. The underlying monochrome base bled, which gives the piece its mottled appearance.

Dark_Brotherhood_web
Dark Brotherhood, 2018, acrylic on watercolour board, 10″ x 8″

I really like this piece and hope to use this technique more in the future. The image itself is essentially the same composition at the piece above.

Forester_web
Forester, 2018, acrylic on watercolour board, 10″ x 8″

Another acrylic piece.

Blue_Mask_web
Blue Mask, 2018, watercolour, 6″ x 3″

Yes, this is ugly and a little forlorn. It was basically a stress test for the paper. I kept loading pigment to see what this very thick watercolour paper could absorb. The painting is very tiny and unfortunately its difficult to see properly on a screen. Up close, there are some interesting little passages, such as the one the detail below shows.

Blue_Mask_detail_web

– Richard.