August 30, 2009

Tiger, Tiger (or Tyger, Tyger?)

Having taken the last couple of weeks to read and think, I'm slowly starting to move into action again. I've got a number of ideas for the next print and, while I haven't settled on any yet, I haven't been idle. I'm still working my way through Eric Maisel's Coaching the Artist Within (as per my last post), diligently doing the many exercises, and giving myself time to let the ideas sink in.

Along with that, I took time to upload my latest prints to my website and to give some serious thought, again, to reorganizing the image galleries. That idea is forever simmering away on the back burner but this time I actually wrote down layout ideas, did some sketches, and experimented with different gallery styles.

Next, I've decided to take part in the PROOF Studio Gallery's Year of the Tiger exhibition/exchange for next year. More information, posted by Amie Roman, is here on the WetCanvas forum. I've been on the fence about print exchanges so many times that the time has come to get down and get going. This one seems like a good place to start.

The obvious problem of course, is that what I know about tigers is next to nothing, based as it is on scraps of books I read as I kid, the odd nature documentary, and William Blake's poem. Clearly, that's really not enough. So, no surprise, I went through some initial angst before I headed to the library for books. Those, and the internet, turned into fodder for several pages of sketches none of which turned out all that great:


That led to even more angst before I decided that maybe the sketches are OK because my print isn't going to be based on any of them anyway. In fact, my purpose for doing them was:

a) to force me to zone in on the research images enough to give me some idea of what it is that makes a tiger a Tyger

b) to put that idea as a seed in the subconscious somewhere where it might sprout into something usable

Now, having gone through that process, I've come up with a rough draft of the print I'm very pleased with. And, though it's still early, I'm feeling pretty excited about the whole thing. I've still got time; the submission date isn't until January, so I can afford to let the idea ferment for a bit while I decide on my next other print. But, at this point, things are looking pretty hopeful.

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