Oh that’s easy

Sleepwalkers

When I got the prompt from C4ward March Blogathon for day three, I thought to myself this will be easy. The prompt says: look at your body of creative work past and present. What work is your favorite? An image immediately popped into my head and I said that’s it. Well, I started to think about it and many images began to run through my visual memory, each one a favorite. But o.k. I will choose.

The image above is a drawing on paper titled “Sleepwalkers”. It is a large drawing that came from a period of my life when I  began searching my history to understand why I am compelled to make art. A question that I was sure at the time could be answered easily. It was not easy but in the process I created a series of drawings that to this day speak to me in a very special way. I guess that is why they are my favorites. The sleepwalkers are me during an especially difficult time when I was a teenager. I always have with me so many images beginning at age two that seem to form the foundation for the work I did early on in my career and the work I do now. What I see happening as time passes is that the images have become more and more abstracted or perhaps it could be said they have become simpler and more difficult to read.

I was privileged to have this drawing and the one below ,”Self Portrait in the Nick of Time”, in the “Our Voices” exhibit at the Atlanta Women’s Foundation. Memorable images to me that I was and am pleased to have in a private collection and here as part of this discussion.

Self Portrait in the Nick of Time VD

16 thoughts on “Oh that’s easy

  1. It is easy! to fall into your drawings as a means of searching. So much energy in the mark making and so much uncertainty give the works a raw feeling, like the thing you are looking for is just behind the image if you could only uncover it. Startling freshness.

  2. I love these images and how you discuss that they are so meaningful to you. I really think that’s a powerful part of the process. The meaning in our line leave behind a tangible significance for the viewer. And I can feel it in these images jumping off my computer screen!

  3. I really enjoyed looking at your charcoal drawings, make me want to go buy some too. It reminds me of some of my favorite times in college when we would draw after live model. Thanks Helen for posting these.

    • Thanks Diana! But would you believe the medium is lithographic crayon. This has been my favorite tool for many years. In fact, I have been introducing the crayons to my workshop participants of late. I’m sure you would enjoy their versatility and smooth darks. And yes I always work from a live model. Nothing quite like it.

  4. These are beautiful, very rich and expressive. I’m reminded of one of my favorite artists, Kathe Kollwitz, and also makes me want to dig deep into my toolbox wherever I left those charcoals and other drawing tools I haven’t used in ages! Oh, I see it’s not charcoal, its lithographic crayon, wow- even better!

    • Thank you Kim. Kathe Kollwitz will always be an inspiration to me. I was introduced to her in one of my first drawing classes and have taken her images with me in my visual memory. I hope you dig in that tool box and begin again. Would love to see what happens.

  5. Helen, I admire your work. I don’t know how to express it though. How lucky you are to have had images in your mind since you were two. I am intrigued by this work arising from your teenage years. I am left wanting to more. I am curious and engaged.

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