Article courtesy of our member gringrimaceandsqueak who's work can be found for sale here.
I consider myself a traditional artist. I draw things in charcoal on paper, nothing complicated
about that, right?
After all, burnt wood and squashed vegetable fibers have been around since, well, trees. It
wasn't until we achieved a new personal best by destroying our new computer, our old computer,
the washing machine and my camera within a month of each other that I started to question myself.
I'd just nicely got the hang of the macro button on my camera after five years of ownership and
being a lover of detail anyway, found myself smaller and smaller subjects to work on. I know many
artists still consider it cheating to work from photographs but unless they know something about
training hermit crabs to sit still for a week that I don't, to me it was about using the tools available.
Working in such close up gave me a unique opportunity to study new textures and refine my techniques.
Until, that is, the dratted thing abruptly stopped working. Having established that bashing it on a
variety of surfaces wasn't going to fix it, nor Mr Grins' kindly emptying the sand out of it, I decided
to be philosophical instead. After all, I never used to have a camera like that and besides, we already
had an extensive library of images to keep me amused until we could replace it.
Oh, wait – we do have an online shop though... and three new masks on the shelf waiting to be
photographed. Ah. Cue a very kind friend who lent us a splendidly elderly digital camera which they
assured me was so outdated, it really didn't matter if I killed that as well. Thus assured, I made off
with it and was pleasantly surprised to find it took perfectly acceptable pictures for viewing online,
with a bit of editing. Hmmmn, another sticky point given one computer was now a pile of spare parts in
the corner and the other randomly turning itself off, amongst other things....
I eventually got said pictures posted and was feeling particularly smug when I realised this camera was never
going to capture the three immensely detailed drawings I'd done for a new client, which were to be printed
and therefore needed to be turned into digital pictures. I said a few words, then asked our friend from earlier
if he would be so kind as to use his new camera to do the shots for me. Not having done this before, he agreed.
A day of rearranging lighting, shooting then tinkering with the end result to make sure the three worked as a
set – job done. The images went on disk, which was duly posted out to my client.
I then got a lovely e-mail from my client who's computer was broken and couldn't view them.
I am now very firmly of the opinion that the drawing is the easy bit :)
Grin, Grimace and Squeak!