Late night chocolate and charcoal…

But first…
Dulltown, Europe: Today’s arthropod is the surprisingly sanguine lobster.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The other evening I had my next door neighbour round to watch a TV documentary on the life of the recently departed blues singer B. B. King; it was pretty good. It even had Hollywood star Bruce Willis in it. (Did you know he’s a great blues fan and plays harmonica and sings in his own blues band?)
My friend left at about 11 o’clock, and as I’ve been feeling a bit off colour with a cold-like malady lately I thought perhaps I should have an early night…
Ah, but when I popped into the kitchen with the evening’s coffee and tea cups I noticed, on the worktop, a forgotten bar of 71% strong dark chocolate that I had bought on a ‘cheering myself up whim’ earlier in the day. There it was, lying there – it was thin, flat, and beckoning… Perhaps I’ll just have a couple of squares before I retire for the night? (‘retire for the night’ – that phrase sounds very Victorian doesn’t it? I’ve probably read too many Sherlock Holmes stories in my time!) Well, I mean… Who could sit on the sofa, in front of a TV, with a bar of nice dark bitter chocolate, and not eat it all?… Not me…
By midnight it had all gone and I was mad and buzzing with all the sugar and caffeine. No point in going to bed now you idiot!… Oh, look over there, my drawing board with a big sheet of white paper clipped to it – it’s been there for months, staring blankly, waiting for something to done on it. I thought about a visit I’d had earlier in the week from my annoying, but interestingly eccentric friend Stella. She pops round to drink my tea and is very fond of making pithy comments on my art; last time she called she had one or two things to say about a drawing of mine from 1997, Landscape No. 78. (Drawing)
It started me thinking… 1997 is a long time ago and I wondered if I could still draw like that. Have I got better at my art, or have I lost spontaneity and energy over the years and become a staid old duffer?… So, with vague recollections of what the 1997 drawing looked like I decide to do another version of it. With the TV flashing and chirping in the background I made a start on the sky. (It’s always good to start at the top with charcoal as the dust and bits drop down as you draw.) Come on Dave, put a bit of life into it! – Be loose and playful!…
Suddenly it was 2 am… and I couldn’t stop fiddling with it… Right… I’m off to bed now… Oh, but first, I think I’d better just touch up this little pencilled bit… Oh, and that scuff mark needs some tidying up… It was 3.15 before I could finally prise myself away from the thing…

DSCN4003So, this one is called Landscape No. 102… Charcoal and pencil on paper about 30″ x 22″
Most of it was done on the night, but there has been some tinkering with it, in fact every time I walked past it – it waves, and it calls you over, and invites you to poke it around for a few minutes…
Well, is it better, or is it worse that the other one? Hm, it’s probably both… The new version is impressively fiddly and detailed, but lacks the strength and simplicity of the older one. I wonder if Stella would be interested in having a look at it next time she calls?… I think she’d really enjoy having a good sneer at it…

About Dave Whatt

Grumpy old surrealist artist, musician, postcard maker, bluesman, theatre set designer, and debonair man-about-town. My favourite tools are the plectrum and the pencil...
This entry was posted in art, blues, brain, drawing, dreaming, existentialism, humour, information, learning, music, seeing, surrealism and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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