163 Pedestrians (Tread) - DETAIL 130x22 inchesInk on paper

163 Pedestrians (Tread) – DETAIL 1
30×22 inches
Ink on paper

I’ve been working on my Pedestrian Series since I moved from Taiwan to California in late 2011. So far all the pieces are ink on paper. I like scribbling out rough-looking figures and arranging them in neat grids, something like the looser styles of Chinese calligraphy. In my earlier works from the series, I lined the figures up in a very straightforward manner. Every figure in a piece took up the same amount of space, and they were placed in simple columns and rows.

Above and below are details from my latest piece in the series, 163 Pedestrians (Tread). The full piece can be viewed here. Recently I’ve been toying with patterns, and I came up with the layout of Tread while thinking about basic weave patterns. I like the way the picture plane looks three-dimensional from different angles.

163 Pedestrians (Tread) - DETAIL 2

163 Pedestrians (Tread) – DETAIL 2

163 Pedestrians (Tread) - DETAIL 3

163 Pedestrians (Tread) – DETAIL 3

163 Pedestrians (Tread) - DETAIL 4

163 Pedestrians (Tread) – DETAIL 4

Once I get a few more images of my newer work ready, I’ll compare the different patterns I’ve been experimenting with.

2012.November.12, 2:59pm
Filed under: 2012.NOVEMBER, SCRAPS | Tags: , , , , , ,

Killer bees attack (column 12, row 2).

Above and below are details from 255 Pedestrians (and Stroller), completed late last night. As in most of my recent works, I’m playing around with ways to make marks using Sakura Pigma Graphic and Sakura Pigma Micron pens. I’ve also been trying to push myself to draw more women. For some reason Freudian or otherwise, I tend to enmasculate females when I’m drawing. I figure it’s something to do with mirrors.  Regardless, I don’t often hear complaints that there are too many women around.

Shrunken-head Pablo (column 11, row 11).

Stretch pants (column 5, row 14).

This is one of my favorites from this piece. No pedestrian really, just scribbly swirls.

Some of these lines cut into the paper, so up close this almost looks like bas relief (column 6, row 8).

I wanted suggestion to play a big part in this drawing. Does this woman have feet? (column 1, row 2)

Eventually I’ll get an image of the final piece up on my gallery of finished works, for now it’s on my Facebook page.


The above detail is about 2.5 inches across. One thing my ongoing show in Laguna has taught me is that my current works look much, much better in real life than they do in photographs or on a monitor. The most basic problem is that the plane of our eyes’ focus changes constantly, and this is impossible to achieve with a camera. Even line art on the slickest vellum looks much better to the eye than it ever could in print. In a previous post I noted how happy I was that a friend and collector chose to hang my work at the end of the entrance hallway of his house; the pride of place was flattering, but I also know that people entering his door will see my piece from a distance first, and then their focus will change as they approach the wall on which it’s hung.

Below are five works I’ve completed since sending pieces for my current show to the framer. I’ve been experimenting around with my Pedestrian Series:

Now here’s what I love most about this series. Each figure is composed of rough, abstract lines and forms that together add up to the images you see from a distance. In a photograph, these forms are only visible in a close-up view:

In these details, you can see how the ink is sometimes jammed down into the porous watercolor paper, while at other times the pen has been roughly slid along the surface, and still others, the ink sits atop the paper in a layer:

I’ve been playing around with introducing color into these works. Below is a detail of a piece that includes marks using Prismacolor Premier markers, but I’m not sure if I like the way the ink soaks into the paper so easily. You can tell the difference between the thick orange lines (Prismacolor) and the fine red lines (my usual Sakura pens) flaring out from the figures:

Here’s another experiment. For this piece I coated the paper with a layer of black acrylic paint, and then scraped the white forms out with an X-acto blade:

Another view of the same piece, showing how the individual images look up close and further away. Only with the naked eye can you see both views of the same image at the same time.