Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Thinking in Cicadas

I didn't want to go to class last night, I had been feeling under the weather. But it was the last one and I forced myself along.
After a few minutes of drawing, I felt quite well again.  Below is the result, a cicada from above and beneath on toned paper. When I first started the drawing I gave up as I thought it was too small. As always, my teacher encouraged me to keep going. It is simple advice and it is always correct.

This detailed work is like deep thought. I examined the cicada in every detail from every angle. I noticed the tiny ridges and markings, marveling at the precise detail nature had given the insect despite its diminutive size. It's wings, after years of lifelessness, still maintained a luster and color that would rival a stained glass window.
As my teacher observed, the patterns of its body and head are reminiscent of an Egyptian tomb, the colors reminded me also of those rich hues that Klimt used.  Unfortunately I don't think I did them justice here.

When taking a break, I thought about Frida Kahlo after the accident that was to change her life forever. Art must have been a tremendous release to someone like herself, in pain and confined. I am still amazed that more of us don't do it. There are of course other ways to feel that release and drawing or painting are only two of them. 

My teacher was Peter Loewer.  Illustrator, artist, writer, natural historian, teacher.