Just My Type

Every new world needs a map…

Although it appears to take a particular kind of someone that feels compelled to build a boat, and another type of someone to explore and create the map needed for others to use to pilot the boat, and finally, it’s going to take a crew of “someones” to use the boat.

The Write Place is very similar to the boat that was built. A lot of effort was put into the dream of creating a book crafting studio in downtown Stockton, California and now it’s metaphorically moving its way out of port.

Nico and I spent the day together for the inaugural workshop learning the bare bones basics of typesetting and using the Golding Pearl Letterpress.

Upside down and backwards, the dyslexia is coming in real handy…

I’m pretty certain that I couldn’t find a media that’s more niche than typesetting and letterpress, but despite the lack of an audience, there’s still an allure to the archetype of the printed word. I grew up making my own zones and thinking of them as kin to the pamphlets Ben Franklin printed with an eye towards setting off a revolution. I don’t feel much has changed, it’s just that now, the changes that I have my own eye looking towards is amorè. 

That kind of change is just my type.

To be continued….

Post-it Note 11/15

“We don’t do well with vagueness or a lack of explanation…”

Proportion is a detail that has an disproportional weight in a design. It’s almost enough, but not quite.

Post-it Note 11/11

It’s been shown that the human brain develops in relation to its environment and that we retain a degree of neural plasticity through our adulthood.

I’d like to assert that healthy creative life grows and flowers many times through different media throughout a lifetime… that possibly the art we learn to make facilitates continued neural development?

Post-it Note 11/10

“Marcus” 2019

Would Richard Diebenkorn been any less brilliant if his works were unrecognized? Would he just have been a man that spent much too much time alone in a room painting and drawing if no one knocked on his door? Would Pierre Bonnard be considered any different? It’s just a matter of doing the math to assign value to an artist’s work, but it takes willing buyers to assign worth. It take an audience that shows up and applauds to assign worth. Patrons validate the work’s worth by choosing the work. Both of these artists are known, not because their work was transformative or because of their brilliance, but because the work had traits that surpassed value, the work that they made was seen to have worth. Without that, they would have been men that spent much too much time alone, making pretty pictures just to amuse themselves.

“Marcus” 2019

These two pastels are from one 20 minute pose with Marcus today. The exercise that I had in mind was to quickly put down the form, lay in the color, and stay away from portraiture. Jess kindly pointed out that I cropped the composition into a crotch shot (thanks Jess), I had seen the composition as an intersection of diagonals creating recognizable form… but now that she pointed it out, yeah, turns out it’s a crotch shot.

Issue of Comfort

It’s almost always interesting to see what people feel comfortable connecting with (who am I kidding, im talking about double tapping the like button ). It’s about the work, but is it what’s being presented? How the subject is conveyed? Its compositional subjectivity? It’s previewed value?…

I repost an image of a chawan from the studio archive and a pastel figurative drawing from this week’s session, people hearted the chawan 5 to 1 over the nude chosen.

It could be instagram’s algorithm, but I think it’s more likely a vote against nudes (in particular an issue of comfort and taste). Will that change? Probably not…

Questionable Task

Smartest idea that I bumped into today… “It’s not my task to provide a solution, someone else gladly has that covered, my task is to continue asking questions.”


It feels like a pompous thing to spout off, but today, I’m onboard with this.

It’s fairly safe to say that the most frequent question asked by viewers is, by no small coincidence, also the most easily relatable… “What is in front of you?” It’s feels good to understand what you are looking at. Representational art that actually looks like what’s being represented is usually what viewers expect to see, and I believe it’s precisely because of this common expectation that aspirations of artistic skill usually leans towards demonstrations of rote mimemic representation. The solution to the original question is then simply accurate representation.

I’m not really any different. Despite working in the arts over the past 30 years, I’ve been reluctant to think of myself as an artist until I could do just that, draw what was in front of me. But now I feel that I was being shortsighted, that the task that now has my interest is finding other questions to ask about what’s in front of me and how am I going to relate to the information that presents itself and how is that information going to be transformed.