We arrived at our geodesic dome in Silver City today and we are just totally blown away with its charm and beauty. It is now time to start working on our respective projects and prepare for our workshops. All set up and ready for work with the temperature already past 90 degrees outside and it is not yet noon. Stories of wild cats and rattlesnakes are gonna keep me on the path for a while… until my curiosity gets the better of me. But for now I’m gonna keep out of the high desert sun and work, work, work….
I have spent the whole day in my element setting up my exhibition space at the University of Nevada, Reno. I have brought with me the drawings I have been working on over the past year or so. It’s rare for me to get the opportunity to take a step back and look at my work in a larger space and see it within a different context which has prompted to start of a new body of work using past drawings and experience and using collage to explore the communication of the process of thinking and responding to a new environment. The sketchbook carries important significance in the process of discovery and the collage, an art form in its own right, is used here as a platform to playfully show the process of thought and the results of the act of thinking.
The main selection of illustrations is part of a larger body of work that looks at memory and thought through the act of drawing. An exercise into understanding information we can’t quantify by experience and drawing upon the memories of the things we can. Flashes of the memories of a journey or the destination of a distant world mixed with the interpretation of time and space and how we move through our own plane of existence.
Having been up for 24 hours straight yesterday I managed a fairly good nights sleep.. well by good I mean I only waking up a few times in the night and being totally wide away a 3:30 am. After recording twenty minutes of the early morning soundscape perched in the corner of the window I decided to just get up at about 5:45 in the end. It’s not such an unreasonable time, if it is good enough for the sun then it is good enough for me (and also the rooster… apparently).
I am currently sitting on the ‘Pirate ship’ porch in the bright morning sunshine of Reno listening to the cacophony of garden sprinklers rain down the only source of water these lush landscaped garden paradises of Slide Mountain will likely see, at least for the coming months anyway. There are also the other exotic and unfamiliar curious cackles and warbles of the various creatures I am yet to identify mixed in with a few comforting sounds of the familiar, gentle dove cooing, the rummaging of busy chickens looking for their first morning feed and the occasional croaking frog. From this vantage point I also get the view of the occasional airplane taking off and landing so the sounds of the racing engines echoes right the way through the basin.
Beyond the tidy picket fenced meadows with Llamas and neighing horses and pristine wooden barns with the hens enjoying the morning activity and the ducks in the ponds with the dog barking. After the trees and the fields that roll gently down hill you have the distant rumble of Reno and the twinkle of the glass buildings that glimmer in the early morning sunshine. Casinos and shopping malls, galleries, superstores and every kind of ‘drive-thru’ you can imagine. Beyond this the landscape becomes wild again, the small hills undulate into bigger hills which over lap onto larger hills which become the rugged mountains of the Sierras.
This seems the most enjoyable way to ease yourself into six weeks in the desert, aside from the heat of the sun that scorches even at 6am this feels lush and green and not much like a desert at all… Yet…
A journal of a sequence of events occurring over a period of time and location in space.
Internal Wilderness is part of an ongoing project looking at ‘landscape and memory’ - our relationship with the environment, effects we have on the world and space around us and in turn it’s profound affect on our own memory and emotions.
Each of these landscapes is a starting point to a much bigger adventure that strives to answer the question of what lays beyond the horizon.
Within the space on each sheet of paper a world can be created either from a distant memory of a childhood holiday or from the desire to see parts of the world that for now are only dreamed about.
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As I was clearing my desk for a days work I was about to put away the lino inks I recently ordered... and before I knew it I was into a 4 colour print run... Sometimes you just can't help but procrastinate...
Since our Study Trip to Berlin with the Brighton University Illustration and Graphic Design students, both myself and Stewart have been refreshed and inspired to create a new body of work. So over the Easter Weekend I took all the inspiration from Berlin and my ongoing project research and spent a few days doing 'Sketchbook Work' for the first time in a LONG TIME.
First time I have seen this in the flesh and its looking rather splendid. I worked on this for most of the Autumn last year and at one stage it felt like I was at the foot of a mountain I had to climb... but eventually after many weekly 'to do' lists and sticky bits of tape on my walls I got to the other side.
Currently available in Germany.
Nordische Wildnis by Claire Scully, Published by Grafe und Unzer, Germany.
Last year I worked on art therapy adult colouring in books for the first time. The Menagerie was the first to be published by Michael 'O' Mara books. It's been a real journey for me, learning how to make the drawing of my bejewelled series more streamlined. This is the first series I have employed digital drawing from the start.
In the Summer of 2015 we heard three sparrow hawks in the thick woods of Hampstead Heath. Not easy to spot but we kept following the calls. deeper and deeper into the leaves and the branches.
Over the last year I have been working on a series of drawings based on the idea that drawing can be used as vehicle to take both the artist and the viewer on a journey through time and space. Drawing places from memory and also as I imagine them to be I gave myself the task of transferring my internal world onto paper. This 145cm wide landscape was created after I had completed 70+ A6 postcard sized drawings of the 'internal wilderness' series (the self imagined places I would like to visit). I have always been interested in the space beyond the image, often wondering how the world created would look like as you move your eyes off the edge of the paper. So, keeping the scale of the drawing by using the same sized 0.5 rotring rapidograph I gave myself an expanse of paper (relative to the A6 that I had grown accustomed) This allowed me to create a 360 degree view of this imagined wilderness.