OCTOBER 2016 – Autumn leaves have been absolutely spectacular this year, probably the best I can recall in my entire life. Whether due to rainfall patterns, soil PH, what have you, it has been quite inspiring regardless of the reason for this colorful flourish. Doesn’t seem so long ago that everything was lush and green, like this scene (see below) from a hike I took over the Summer. Going to be pining for those days shortly, haha.
Winter is not without its perks, especially for a writer and avid reader. The days growing short and ample excuses to remain holed up in the house with a book in hand are also welcomed territory. And I’ve already been taking full advantage of this phenomenon, haha. With the illustrations for my new book (still not ready to share the title just yet, maybe in my next post…) being the main beneficiary as I have made a huge leap forward with the drawings. Of the (currently) 18 chapters of the new book, I have all but one of the full page illustrations ‘finished’. Last minute futzing as I go to scan them in to the computer will certainly take place, to darken up shadows and make lines crisp. Drawing from a lot of natural scenery to create the artwork and I’m very pleased with how it is looking. Nature provides all the details, as sure it is easy to just draw a tree or some rocks, but if you draw from real world sources it will have a level of depth that can’t easily be faked.
Some things are easier to draw from strictly one’s imagination, but I think the human eye is very good at detecting ‘fakes’. Sort of like how a lot of CG in movies looks, you can just tell it isn’t genuine, feel it is the same with drawing. Granted most art is so stylized that it is a non-factor, but I would say to anyone trying to draw trees and living things, there is no substitute for first-hand observation. So go take a walk out into the 3D realm of the world around you! And take note of the angles of trees, the cracks in rocks, and the shapes of clouds. It can all work its way into your art and give it that extra bit of something, that intangible that people will be drawn to.
Read a few books this month, one called ‘Happy Money’ By Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton that my roommate had on a shelf one evening when I was at a loss for what to read and finished all my books from the library. Anyways, it was an insightful look at how we spend our money and makes the case for using it towards things that deliver happiness versus material possessions. That is an over-simplification of their book, which I would recommend reading if you want to tackle some subject matter that you might never have given much thought to before. And don’t shy away from investing in experience, charity, and others.
More and more energized by my creative work each day, putting a lot into the new book. Which, has gone through another draft since we last talked. It was incredibly helpful to have my editor read through it and write a series of notes (in addition to the grammatical fixes here and there) that posed questions about the logic of the plot and character motivations. More self-imposed deadlines are coming up soon, so picture me at my computer reading and re-reading passages, tinkering with wording, and getting frustrated trying to scan in the illustrations and maintain the registration of the drawings, haha.
Who knows, I’m probably doing that right now as you read this!