indoor adventures: #inktember

It’s been a very busy few months project-wise! But wonder | wander | women couldn’t resist the new art challenge that popped up this year. Instead of drawing through the month of October, I celebrated my birth month by drawing for INKtember instead.

butterflies

This year I didn’t stick to my usual one-a-day. Instead I wanted to do something more personal, but not autobiographical. Some surreal portraits inspired by the state of my mind from day to day.

time

We love the Surrealists, and they loved to combine things that were ordinary or beautiful in a way that jarred the viewer. An emotional left turn, a psychological surprise.

ferns

I love drawing faces, and living things, especially birds. I love the mysterious portraits of Magritte, and the bird collages of Joseph Cornell. There is a symbolism not just in birds, but specifically in their wings. A friend told me that the illustration below reminded her of seraphim, and with our Catholic upbringing I definitely had that image in mind.

doves

I love drawing feathers but not white wings. Brown owl feathers or the barred feathers of my favourite peregrine falcon are more satisfying to draw. In medieval manuscripts angel wings were much more likely to be coloured like pigeons or even parrots.

Doves (complete)

Lately when I draw it’s with a specific project or story in mind. There’s a lot of thinking involved in many of my illustrations, and some kind of linear narrative. Once in a while it feels good to dig deep and draw something from instinct. I don’t need to explain or understand why I drew it; it just feels good to make it.

fire

That’s why we like these month-long challenges: the instructions are so simple that we can relax our unconscious (or self-conscious) constraints, let our imagination jump off the cliff and see where it goes!

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