Author Archives: Zygote

About Zygote

Zygote Blum is an artist living and working in Northern California with his studio partner Jessica Fong. Together they work as studio artists creating work for local and regional markets as well as for national exhibition.

5/19 Figure it Out

It doesn’t need to be to the moon and back…. just a few lines to hang some color onto is worth a moment of peace.
Redrawing a drawing is turning out to be and unexpected exercise of restraint. Straight out of the blocks, there’s a feeling that what’s being done is doing the initial drawing a disservice, the original being interesting enough in the first place for it to have gotten pulled out of the stack. Although now that I’m looking back at these two, it’s not all that reasonable to assume that anyone would be able to say which drawing came first. The unexpected exercise of restraint is referring to an inability to stick to this particular project for 2 weeks without becoming diverted or disheartened. A figure pinned to a page can easily be a failure of character development. The most exciting and interesting thing going on is usually the dynamic nature of active lines. If it’s a problem of disinterest, add interest to what’s being done. Figure it out.

Still Life With Strawberry

Sit down and do what’s in your head… Moving the old bronze skull that Jess planted up with a strawberry daughter a few weeks ago, out onto the ledge of the porch, and drawing that while relaxing, that’s what was in my head.

“Still Life With Strawberry” 5”by 8” pastel on paper

…and it worked(ish). I didn’t have a clear vision for what I wanted. I thought I did, but now looking at the result, I suspect what I had was a vague image connected to a feeling. The image I had in mind was darker in tone, and frankly, I whiffed it on the feeling I wanted to achieve. I don’t know how to describe what I wanted other than to say I wanted to feel it in my lower gut on my left hand side. (Sounds weird saying it, but that’s what I wanted.)

Still… the idea is out of my head, now it’s either play with it, develop it, or move on.

Source Code

Swinging on the monkey bars… from one rung to the next… don’t get anywhere without reaching out and seeing what happens. This time it was pulling a drawing from the stack of life drawings to use as a source for a pastel drawing. Instigated on a whim, it wasn’t meant to be anything more than movement, an exercise, but now, it’s intriguing the way that the light blue tinted gesso works with the colors laid on top, and the way that the vine charcoal interacts with the white & blue pastels. Simple stuff, and a clumsy execution, but it’s fuel for a few days worth of daydreaming about possibilities.

Definitely need to keep pulling from the pile of work from life drawing and using it as source code.

Bad Line Up

The session was begun with the montra of “just make a bad drawing” which is a coded permission to just get started on pretty much anything without a built in expectation…. and it almost always works, I get started, and fairly effortlessly, make a pretty bad drawing. The silver lining is that along the way possibly a few new techniques might get tried out, skills still unfamiliar get practiced, and sometimes, a bad drawing gets steered back towards something better… but at the scale of 5 by 5 inches, not much is given up by a decision to just try again. 
This time, the second drawing was so bad that it made the first one look decent in comparison.
Would I cross a room to look at either? No. 
Were they worth doing? Sure… I told my kids just yesterday that a person learns little from their successes, but potentially can learn a lot from coming up short.
Some days it’s enough to just make a bad drawing and appreciate it for what it is. An opportunity to grow.