Sunday, 6 December 2009

How a picture came to be

This post is for my dear writer friend Kate Constable, with whom I was recently discussing parallels between the process of writing a story and the process of making a picture. We decided that there were many. But I wonder whether anything important gets lost in the process sometimes? Above: the final Lady and Egg. Below: the initial sketch. I doodle sometimes, a relatively new habit, but one which always gleans at least one little creature worth dignifying on its own in a more "finished" medium rather than just remaining on a page of numerous biro scrawls.

Below: the first attempt at a "finished" picture, done using a fountain pen with pencil over the top. I thought that it looked too laboured, especially the egg yolk, which seemed too dark.


... I'd be interested to know which of these three pictures people like best -- the one that I consider to be the "finished" one -- the simplified one with the green background (top) -- might not necessarily be the one that viewers connect with. Let me know!

I have also been admiring the work of the French artist/illustrator Marie Delafon lately. I wonder whether I was thinking of her work while I was doodling that day?

8 comments:

Antonia Glavic said...

Lovely post. I'm always intrigued by other artist's processes, seeing the idea from concept to fruition. I agree with you - the inked version is a bit too laboured, the final piece seems to sit nicely. It has the right balance of spontaneity and detail. It's great to see your evolution of ideas.

Sandra Eterovic said...

Hi Antonia! Thank you for looking and thank you for your comment -- I'm glad that you can see some spontaneity in a picture which actually took some work to evolve!

Mad Cat Lady said...

I kind of like the doodle best - her head looks more like an egg in that one.

Egghead whose yolk has fallen out from between her legs? Intellectual falling in love? Sense swept away by lust?

I could make all sorts of things up :)

Sandra Eterovic said...

Hi Mad Cat Lady! Thanks -- I LOVE your theories...they made my day. You have a great imagination. Hmmm...I increasingly like the sketch too. At least we all agree that the ink one is not great!

This girl said...

I am going to completely disagree with all of you and say that the ink one is my standout favourite. I love it. It's the wholesome whimsical thing with a kind of morbid and disgusting undertone that I have a slight obsession with.

What Kate did next ... said...

I think I like the doodle too. Maybe because her head is big and egg-like, which resonates nicely with the broken/opened egg at the bottom?

I only wish my works-in-progress were as attractive and coherent as yours!

Sandra Eterovic said...

Thanks This Girl! I love your comment...I'd like to think that it sums up my work in some ways! It's so interesting to read different opinions from fresh eyes. Thanks all!!!

Sandra Eterovic said...

Dear Kate, yes, the whole egg-like head thing is yours and Mad Cat Lady's observation and not something I intended, and it would have been so good to retain that in the final picture. Fresh eyes add so much!
And yes -- it would be harder to post little snippets of writing on a blog, though not impossible...