I love looking at other artist’s notebooks and sketchpads. I love looking at their ideas before they are all smoothed out and in their finished form.
My work starts days, weeks and sometimes months before I’ll even put pen to paper or thread to needle. I’ll get an idea for something or I will have had a discussion with someone about a commission they want done and then I will start mulling. I’ll roll the different aspects of the project around my head, thinking, shaping and building this new work of art piece by piece in my brain.
Firstly in art class in school and then in art college I learned to write down my ideas. It is very important to do this, as you will be very surprised to know just how often you can forget an idea that you have fallen in love with. You could be consumed with it in the morning but by the afternoon between talking to people on the phone, doing your grocery shopping and watching a movie you can have forgotten the whole darn thing. You can be kicking yourself for days trying to pull it back from the recesses of your mind. But there will be zero, zip, nada. My advice to any young or beginner artists out there would be: if you get a good idea, WRITE IT DOWN! You can thank me later when you have made millions.
What I’m showing you today are observational drawings, magazine/book clippings and photocopies and little snippets I have written down for various projects I have done over the years. They are all somehow bug/insect related so I thought they would be a nice follow on from my Threadbare Bug Collection. Before I made these pieces I had really familiarised myself with insects of all shapes and sizes. Drawing them in detail is a great way to get to know how they work and how their bodies fit together. I have always loved to get my teeth stuck into a complicated and detailed observational drawing. It’s such a great challenge to your skills of looking and seeing and following through by committing the image to paper. I love working out proportion and toning everything until it pops off the page with life.