amazing and cool shit, dinner time conversation, lovely things, miscellaneous, drivel, potentially useful information

…journals…

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I find it ironic and amusing trying to do a blog, because in essence, it’s an online journal – I think sometimes I’m still trying to find a purpose for it outside of miscellaneous ramblings about things laced with drawings from my journal or pictures of things I’m cooking.

I can’t remember a time when I didn’t carry around some wad of paper along with a drawing utensil. Early on it was miscellaneous scraps of paper and some crayons maybe, or a ballpoint pen I adopted. Eventually it was a spiral bound sketch pad and pencils. When I went off to Architecture school, I became ‘refined’ and bought bound sketch books and began using drafting pencils, markers, and eventually graduated to a cheap Pelican fountain pen…

Over the years it’s evolved; somewhere along the way I began buying large sheets of paper, taught myself how to bind and make books — in a particular way such that it lies flat when open — invested in various cover cloths, needles and thread, and elastic bands I use to hold them shut… My arsenal for drawing consists of a couple of different fountain pens; one with ink that is water soluble (a Delta Mini Trend with an EF nib), two with inks that are not (a Stipula ‘Passaporto’ with a F nib, and a Delta Fluida also with a F nib). I carry a variety of travel brushes; most filled with colored inks which I ‘paint’ with, a few with water for ‘smearing’ and washing the soluble ink… I also carry refills of inks, a small travel watercolor set I cobbled together inside of a pastel tin, and a couple of regular watercolor brushes.

I’ve never really found the perfect medium for drawing – my mind and eyes bounce around in saccadic rhythms that exceed the pace at which my hand can actually put them on paper. It’s the reason, or excuse, I always seek something new, different, another way of putting it down. Writing, for me, is even more difficult. I don’t think in words – only pictures – and I often find myself saying one thing over and over and over, repeating something far too often in a sentence, changing tenses. Writing a blog is a strange thing for me and there are many mornings I wake up wondering why I ever wrote what I did the night before. You can, if you’re reading this, simply blame or thank the beer – it’s what I do anyway…

I sometimes think writing would be a joy to master, yet even basic grammar escapes my grasp, and I have virtually no desire to go back and learn it. I know what I like to read; the way someone tells a story in words, the way they amble around the crevices of their mind, their surroundings. Really good writers, storytellers, almost always graciously share with you how possibly twisted they really are. They spend the time, when describing the way a person walks down a street, to describe the way the light might catch that persons hair, or the wrinkles in their pants – perhaps ponder the manner in which they got wrinkled, or the nature of the fabric, wonder about the circumstances – then describe the way they dodge litter or puddles of rain. They might go off on a slight tangent about the texture of the concrete, or the shape of the curb, or the smell of the air and the wind or the headline on a newspaper in a box nearby, and suddenly, you’re right there in that place, seeing that person walking down the street with your own imagination and eyes… They let you inside the mind of the characters, let you think and reason right along with them and make the same ugly or strange decision given the context and the reality they exist in…

Maybe what I love about drawing is that it isn’t linear, and there really aren’t rules about grammar or tenses, though some might say there are about composition and color and contrast. Even then, you have no idea what people are going to see first in a drawing, what they’re going to think, how their eyes are going to skip around. It’s a liberating thing to know you have such little control over the direction it might take in another person’s eyes or mind.

I’ve only ever kept a journal for myself, rarely shared it with anyone. Likely that’s why it’s ironic and amusing to write a blog and find it intertwined more and more with my own journal, my own thoughts haphazardly strewn about for the whole world to see…

Lately, it’s become a place to record recipes and ponder things about food, along with sketches and miscellaneous drawings of things and people I see. A simple glance of some old drawing takes me to places and gives instant recall to thoughts I would have otherwise lost forever. It’s an indispensable tool, a playground, a safe haven to drop and discard or keep thoughts forever. I can’t imagine a life without something so simple, so sacred, so completely mine. I can’t imagine that more people don’t keep one, author their own little bible, myths, realities, or just write down recipes. I can’t imagine a world where people don’t sit and write poems, ponder life, or create something that is completely their own…

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Discussion

2 thoughts on “…journals…

  1. I have a simple statement to make: You are truly gifted. =)

    Posted by Maggie | June 21, 2012, 1:38 pm

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