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Again, the same pile of stuff.  Another student was interested in this angle and ended up not being satisfied with the drawing she produced.  So I thought I’d give it a try, too, because this view also fascinated me.  As you can see from the photo, it looked like a mess.  But the underlying structure of this mess was quite simple.  There was a tilted axis forming the chair and the drapery;  and then there was an orthogonal axis formed by the shabby footstool.  So you have the same form (axis) repeated twice, with variation.  I drew in a fairly representational style, without any further abstraction because the underlying structure was already so strong.  I blurred the contours at the top to increase the illusion of depth and movement:  the chair is farther in the distance than the edge of the drapery or the footstool ;  and it’s tipping over.  But mostly, because it was fun to work like this and to see if I could make this banal disorder come alive on paper. (Aquarellable Pencil on gloss paper, 11x 17)

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Once again, I talked about the so-called negative space.  I had set up a still life consisting of a white plastic chair, tilted on a little prop, against a red back ground. The assignment was to draw the chair (the so-called positive space) by not drawing it at all, but instead by drawing the non-chair spaces that make it possible for us to see the chair (the so-called negative space).  This works best when the object depicted is symmetrical,  readily identifiable and seen from a weird angle.  One student faced the chair from a symmetrical view and that drawing didn’t work.  But one new student, Alejandra, was positioned so that her view of the chair was askew.  Perfect.  She worked on 18 x 24 paper with pencil.  The page is riveting.  You just want to look at this apparition.  You see the chair by seeing everything that is non-chair.  The brain tingles.  Such a simple exercise, so easy to conceptualize, and yet so hard to “get.”  This is how art works.

All contents copyright (C) 2010 Katherine Hilden. All rights reserved.

www.khilden.com

http://facefame.wordpress.com

http://katherinehilden.wordpress.com

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