Drawing With Eyes Closed ~9/24/12~

As long as I've been an illustrator, I've always had this feeling that my current style is not the full articulation of what I have to offer visually.  Although these drawings don't necessarily represent a new style or an alternate portfolio, they definitely reveal my desire to move towards a more raw, less calculated and less restrained aesthetic.  Hopefully, one of these days my visual experiments such as these can dovetail into one or more alternate illustration portfolios, such that I can have two or three different styles to choose from, one that's more narrative and light-hearted (like this type of work) and another that's a bit more urgent, somewhat abstract, and conceptual, like what you see above.

So how did these drawings come about?  Well, for starters, I was bored one day and decided to venture on a little artistic exercise, grabbing the nearest pen and paper, then attempting to draw a human face - as best as I could - with my eyes shut.  For some reason, I was really pleased with the results.  All of the hesitations and self-doubt that sometimes cloud my creative process were altogether missing, while the raw energy, intuitive mark-making, and emotiveness that I love seemed ever-present in a somehow condensed or even purified form.  So I did another one.  And another.  Eventually I realized that these images had to be shared. So I decided to scan them in and edit them into a presentable form, with wood grain as a background.  Though it was perhaps a purely intuitive choice, I think the wood grain fits because, like the marks I make with my eyes closed, wood grain is a visual that sort of "emerges" in nature, organically and at a glance randomly but at closer inspection with a raw beauty that transcends mortal intentionality.  In other words, the "mark-making" I see in wood grain sets an aesthetic standard which I seek to embrace in my drawings with eyes closed.  It's an aesthetic that develops on a plain higher than that which can be apprehended with physical vision.  Or, as a wise man once said, "we live by faith, not by sight."