Pen and ink detail of Steve by Chris
I was going to write about paint but instead I'm going to write about rules. We live in a pleasant urban area, a suburb with a large park, an amenity used by many of the local people. This amenity has for many years been the hub of lots of social interaction, children gather to play games, football teams train, mothers stroll with pushchairs, sit and chat, elderly people stride out and take exercise, others jog and dogs are walked. This is a park for the whole community but some imbecilic council official desperate to prove his (usually a him) worth has devised an idiotic zoning system whereby certain activities must be restricted to certain zones. Like the perfect metaphor for today's Britain, where once we had a community interacting we now have activities separated with the threat of a £1000 fine. My exasperation at this petty bureaucracy can barely be expressed, these rules are for the benefit of faceless council employees no doubt fearful of losing their job, they add nothing to the social cohesion of a community, they create division, suspicion and fear, where there was once light and laughter, now there are long faces and sidelong glances.
There are good rules and their are bad rules, there are rules that construct and their are rules that destroy, there are rules that build prisons and there are rules that let you run faster than you ever thought you could. In life drawing you have to decide whose rules to follow and the fun bit is making up your own rules, the kind of rules that make you feel good and happy about yourself, the rules that say,'Why not, let's try it and see what happens.
I know there are good drawings and bad drawings, those we aspire to and those we hope to avoid but at the heart of it should be freedom because without that you're going for a miserable walk in a miserable park fearful of straying outside your prescribed zone and that's not living. Have a blast, nobody's judging and you never know you might be the one that finds that new, different, exciting and provocative way to describe the figure, why not, somebody has to.
I chose to feature Chris's work because it reminds me of the Neo-Romantic influenced work of Keith Vaughn, it's not necessarily visually like it but it seems to share the same sentiment, a kind of spiky masculinity that works particularly well with pen and ink. Both Roger's excelled in the sensitivity stakes, each has the most delicate but precise of touch's, Patrick has gone for something robust and structural but also precise in it's edges and observation. It was a modest turnout but an enjoyable evening with the return to form of our reliable striker (striking a pose.....maybe) Steve who's had an up and down season (don't go there) but is a welcome addition to our squad.
Paintings and drawings by Chris, Claire, Fiona, Janet, Patrick, Roger H, Roger S, Sue, Terry and Tom.