My lovely Washington DC studio that I mentioned in a previous post really is secret. You’ve never heard me mention it before, have you? And it’s very highly fortified. If President Bush had wanted somewhere else to hide Vice-President Cheney when he needed that undisclosed location, or if President Obama needs somewhere to hide Vice-President Biden, well, I’ve got just the place. To enter my studio, one must go through many heavy, very solid doors, then one wanders through a spooky, narrow hallway past a surveillance camera, after which one winds upwards in a concrete stairwell. (Sorry, I can’t tell you which floor is mine. It’s Top Secret.)
In fact, getting into my studio involves a process that’s a little bit like this:
You cannot not love these guys … with faces like these.
We just returned from my kid’s orchestra rehearsal. While she plays, I draw. Well, I draw when I can concentrate to draw. The conductor is mesmerizing. Sometimes I just watch the rehearsal in a wonderful trance.
But today I drew. Indeed, I made the drawing above. It has an interesting origin. It’s a copy of a portion of a drawing that I’m using as a study for a painting in progress. Got that? And the source drawing is itself the result of a composite image made from lots of separate pieces put together and reworked into a new format. Hmm. Maybe you had to be there.
Anyway, listening to the rehearsal played a role in my decision to make this drawing. I realized that I could do with my images what these young musicians are doing at orchestra practice. I could take my image apart — measure by measure — and practice it again and again in order to understand the music of it more completely. Also that by drawing and redrawing the same figures, I could gain a fluency and naturalness. Perhaps something of a musicians phrasing could play a role in my picture.
Will I become eventually a fish virtuoso? Who can say?