The Consumed Artist

by Lisa













       A while back I did a number of drawings on Arches “rough”  watercolor paper with charcoal. The above drawing of Cliff is an example of the stippling effect you get from it.  The paper is very thick since it IS watercolor paper, and can really take a beating with the charcoal as well as the eraser. I was so enthralled by it in the beginning that I went ahead and bought a great big roll of the paper. Recently I had the brainstorm to do a very large drawing on this paper. It will be about 40″ X 60″ in the end. This presents a number of logistical problems.

       The first one I encountered was the seemingly innocuous act of unrolling that damn paper. It has been several years since I used it, and seemed to like the way it had come to rest–in a tight little nasty coil of a roll. Imagine unfurling a thin piece of tightly wound metal. Very similar as the paper is, don’t forget, quite thick. I felt like Jerry Lewis in The Disorderly Orderly trying to wind gauze around the accident victim. Just not meant to be. I had to get a helper in to wrestle the paper to the floor. I rolled a piece out that must have been 10 feet long, and it still wanted to spring back like a rubber band. I finally resorted to spraying the whole thing with water to make it relax. I swear I heard it sigh. It is now sitting with books on it, and I am afraid to lift them off in case it springs back into action having dried.

       If I were a cartoonist I would  draw myself with a bewildered look on my face standing inside a tube up to neck. It would look like the front page of the LA Times, and the headline would be WATERCOLOR PAPER CONSUMES ARTIST.

       I will keep you posted on my next logistical hurdle with it.

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13 Responses to The Consumed Artist

  1. It’s Good Content.
    Thanks for your blog.
    Nice to read it.

  2. Rhonda says:

    I can see this as you are describing it and I think you should do the cartoon!!! Made me laugh already this morning – and that’s a good thing.

  3. Lovely drawing, Lisa!

    I know others who’ve ordered big rolls of this stuff (at the suggestion of some well-known artist… can’t remember who). I’ll ask around and see if there are any helpful hints for dealing with the paper coming off the roll. It sounds like quite a workout… hope you had your Wheaties that day.

  4. 100swallows says:

    That’s a funny story, Lisa, and a good drawing. I sometimes have the same trouble with my sleeping mat. I stretch it out but by the time I throw myself on it it’s a coil again.

  5. Dar says:

    It’s a beautiful drawing, Lisa.
    I sometimes roll paper backwards from the way it was originally rolled, to flatten it.

  6. Nava says:

    That is quite a stunning drawing!!

    As for that springy free-spirited roll of paper, if once you take the books off of it, it cheerfully assumes back its rolled position – you may need to revert to the last resort, and stretch it. That will cause it to behave. Us watercolorists are used to the sighs of papers.

  7. Pat Meyer says:

    Thank you for your sweet comments and hopefully I can get that new truck soon. The drawing is so interesting and done so well. Thank you for sharing your thoughts in the blog.

  8. Pat Meyer says:

    Thank you for stopping by my blog and hope to get that new truck soon. Love your picture. Great job.

  9. Fantastic drawing – love the post.

  10. Funny! Lovely drawing too.

  11. Wow! That IS nice!!…
    Guess I should try harder to keep up. I look forward to seeing what you do on the huge paper you will finally fight into submission!! :)

  12. Chris Page says:

    It forever amazes me that someone with such breath-taking ability for portraiture spends her time painting pictures of stupid flowers and teacups (oh, sorry, did I sound like mom there?)

  13. lbtowers says:

    Heeeyyy…those teacups keep me in tennis lessons. But thanks Mom. I think…

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