Some old stuff

In preparation for my big move out West, I've been cleaning out the boxes of things I've been storing in my parent's barn for the last few years. While I've been recycling old papers and such, however, I've also found lots of drawings that I've done over the last decade or so. Having been out in a barn for eight years, they're not in great shape, but it's been amusing to go through this older material. Here are a few of the less embarrassing ones:

This is an assignment I did for a drawing class I took at Yavapai College, a community college in Prescott, Arizona. I occasionally took classes here while I was in high school; I took this particular art class in 2003. If I remember correctly, we were supposed to do a pen-and-ink drawing of something, and to take at least three hours doing it. My mother had just gotten this grand old wing chair reupholstered, and I found it sufficiently enchanting to spend an evening drawing it.

Here's a charcoal still life I did during that same class. I know it's an in-class piece because it's full of random objects that I don't own, such the bowling pin with the bowl over it (no, it's not a lamp) and the old-fashioned iron.

This still life, however, I did do at home, as part of the final project for that class. My style has changed a lot since this class, but I learned a lot from it, and have always looked back on it fondly.

Here's a college piece, 2006. I was an art history major, but I was required to take a studio class, and I really enjoyed this course. The assignment was to create a t-shirt design that could be visually read in more than one way (Salvador Dali was a master of double images). This design is a play on the phrase "a bird in hand is safer than two in the bush." I made it by cutting out black paper with an X-acto knife and then gluing it over white paper. It would have taken less time to just draw it, but apparently I wanted a challenge.

I was really surprised to find these drawings. They're relics from a one-time life drawing class I took in London, when I was studying abroad. I'm fairly certain that the session was held at the Foundling Museum, and wine was included in the price. These sketches are no masterpieces by any stretch of the imagination, but it was a fun night.

When I was a kid I drew almost nothing but dragons, and I'll still do them occasionally on request. I probably did this as a tattoo design for somebody, but I don't remember when and for whom. Judging by the style, this was probably done within the last five or six years.

This last charcoal drawing was done in 2008, as part of a series I did using my skulls and Venetian Carnival masks. What you're seeing behind that mask is a lamp with the shade tilted upward, allowing the light to pour through the eyes.

When you live with your work every day, it can be hard to see how it's changed over time, so it's been fun to go through these older pieces and see how I've evolved in both style and content. I'm even more curious to see how my work will change in New Mexico.