This page is the transition between the orange section of my art journal (which is finally completed after a year – woohoo!) and the yellow section. Those colours combined with the idea of transitions made me think of the cycle of sunrise and sunset and gave me the inspiration for this illustration. It also left me with the earworm of “Sunrise, Sunset” from ‘Fiddler on the Roof’. Sidebar: when I lived in Edinburgh in the 1990s, I saw a production of ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ at the Playhouse starring Topol. It remains one of the best productions I have ever seen, especially the set design. So, yes, while that song played on repeat in my head, I created this art journal page. I plagiarized my own artwork for the concept and composition as this is a version of my “Alpha & Omega” page from last January.
This is the last illustration in the orange section of my Rainbow Art Journal. Phew. Orange is not my favourite colour so it has been a bit of a slog to get through this section, which also coincided with a lean period when it came to free time. Looking back through my blog posts, I learned that it was almost exactly a year ago that I created the first illustration in the orange section. Yikes. That isn’t very speedy progress, is it? Let’s hope it doesn’t take me a year to complete the next section which is, of course, yellow.
On the subject of transitions, this illustration was inspired by the transition between seasons. As frequent readers will know, I am very much not fond of Winter. This Winter has not been too abysmal in that we have not had any big monster storms. We had a surprise snow storm in November that caused a lot of chaos but we really got off lightly in terms of quantity of snow. What we have experienced instead is a number of smaller winter weather events that caused disruption – days when my kids had snow days or late arrivals when I had to still go to work, for instance. The landscape looks beautiful when blanketed in sparkling white, but shoveling it is not so appealing. Shoveling it while your husband is working in Hawaii is even less appealing. Anyway, there are finally definite signs of Spring around and the temperatures are steadily increasing. This means we can venture out wearing slightly fewer layers and can feel comfortable in less bulky coats or in cosy sweaters.
I wanted the composition to be quite narrow in order to accentuate the idea of cosiness. Since this is a page in a journal with an illustration already on its reverse, I could not crop the paper down. I, therefore, used strips of washi tape to “frame” my drawing. The tape then inspired my colour palette.
I had to redeem myself and my art journal after the hideous beetle page so I returned to what for me is apparently a favourite subject – skeleton women. I have no idea what in my psyche or imagination keeps compelling me to illustrate these skeletal ladies. I just go with it. This one was an experiment with a colour palette of orange, rusty red, and teal. I like the combination and can see me using it again. While the orange and red suggest rust, the teal suggests verdigris so they all work together quite well thematically as well as in terms of colour.
I probably won’t return to either of my art journals for the rest of this month because I am going to be consumed with other art projects. I am still filling my Brooklyn Art Library sketchbook with zombies and I am also participating in Drawlloween. I have joined in with Inktober the past couple of years but this year I decided to push myself out of the habit of just doing ink linework illustrations by joining in with Drawlloween. I am working bigger than in previous years and I am adding colour. That’s the plan anyway. You can follow the results of both of these projects on my other blog, Pict Ink, or on Instagram.
Maybe it was because I recently collaged a lobster into an art journal page or maybe it is my fondness for all things monstrous, but the next subject in my Rainbow Art Journal turned out to be a Lobster Girl. It’s the page where I am transitioning between red and orange so I guess that combination of colours sparked my imagination and set it off in that direction. Whatever the inspiration, when I put pencil to paper, this was the illustration that emerged.