Friday, May 14, 2021

52 Fridays - Acorn Head - Ibibio

 It's week twenty of this fifty-two Fridays drawing project and this week's subject is an African mask from Nigeria of the Ibibio people. Another wonderful image harvested from the seemingly endless treasures to be found on Instagram. Sidebar - I'm no fan of Zuckerberg and don't like that Facebook (also don't like Facebook) now owns Instagram, but it's tough to find a better place to look at such a wide variety of different kinds of art easily. Maybe Pinterest? (What's your favorite site to browse art?) I'm constantly adding new images to a saved collection in my IG account, so there's always several things ready to draw.

I found this Ibibio mask on "afrikaria" and it is the third image in a collection of masks depicting disease and deformities. I will likely draw the other two masks sometime in the future as I find them all to be fascinating. My immediate response to this mask was "Acorn Head" and I intentionally exaggerated the shape of the top of the head to convey this. It also reminded me of a series of tiny carvings I worked on for a time called the "Lo-Fi Gods" that were carved from Hickory Nut Husks. Maybe I'll do a drawing from one of those next.

I've mentioned in the past that I sometimes struggle with my inner critic as I draw, but this week I tricked it by telling myself this was just going to be a "warm-up" drawing before I started the real thing. The critic was silent and I did my work. Truly, all art is just "practice"; a ritual of creation that exercises the soul. That inner critic is also the voice that tries to talk me out of going for a run or eating healthier food. This voice is not my friend.

See you next week.


Friday, May 07, 2021

52 Fridays - Chokwe Mask


Another Friday already. This year is flying by, unlike last year, which seemed to last for ten years. Now that I am all vaxxed up (get your shots you swine you!) I'm beginning to get back out into the world and it's good. I'm returning to a more normal rhythm of life, so the pace is picking up. Starting to look forward to going to the movies again and hanging out in restaurants and pubs. 

So what does that have to do with this week's drawing? Absolutely nothing at all!

This week's drawing is a Chokwe Mask, an image I found on the Instagram feed of johngrahamtribalart. A quick bit of research shows me that the Chokwe people live in south central Africa where the Congo, Angola and Zambia are today. I chose this image because of the tight framing that fills the space, for the big, alien-like eyes and the expressive mouth lined with the sharp teeth. I used an ordinary black ballpoint pen. As is often the case, I began doubting what I was drawing, resisted the urge to abandon it, but fought through and kept with it and like the final result. I don't know why I make the drawing process so difficult. 

Did you make anything this week? If not, get your ass in gear, time is a wasting.

See you next week,


Friday, April 30, 2021

52 Fridays - Nosferatu


Welcome to week eighteen of my "52 Fridays" drawing project. This week's drawing is "Nosferatu", which I drew from memory. It was inspired by an Instagram post by "instahorror" which is an image from the TV adaptation of Stephen King's "Salem's Lot" (1979). In that story he is referred to as "The Master" and scared the crap out of me when I saw it as a child; still creeps me out. There are of course many other versions of Nosferatu on the screen, the most famous being the first one from 1922, directed by F.W. Murnau's version. The German actor Max Schreck portrayed the creature in that film and his strange, expressionist style continues to be an influence to this day. I'll be doing some drawings of his version at some point for sure. Today's version is quite different than the "Salem's Lot" inspiration, which is fine as I purposefully chose to work from memory because I wanted to see how different my version would be and what I changed. The shape of the nose, addition of big eyebrows and larger eyes seem to be the biggest changes. Maybe next week I'll draw from the photo.

Have a good week!


Friday, April 23, 2021

52 Fridays - Happy Earth Day


Happy Earth Day! It was a chilly, but sunny day in RVA yesterday. I got out for a five mile walk, then sat down and drew this lovely, little cabbage head. She was inspired by an image I found on the Instagram account of "fernandin_jones". There is no description, but it looks like a carved piece of jade, a bead from a necklace. I'm guessing it could be from Central America? I always prefer to credit the culture I am drawing from out of respect, but also to provide a node point to connect fellow seekers. I pushed the green color in my interpretation just because it is my favorite color. 

This is week seventeen of the 52 Fridays project. So what is your favorite drawing so far? Any requests?

See ya next week,


Friday, April 16, 2021

52 Fridays - Revenge of the Nose


Yes, I did have acne as a teenager. Funny how that shit still comes out when I made this drawing. I didn't even realize it until I started writing. We are the sum of all the good and bad in our lives after all.

Happy Friday! This week I decided to riff on last week's subject, but this time only work from memory and give myself free rein to play. This profile is so captivating to me that I could just draw it again and again for the rest of the year...that's an idea! I made a lot of changes, primarily making the ear larger and adding the rings, covering the skin with strange tattoos or maybe lesions, and enhancing the lips. It is also rendered in black and white ballpoint pen in a more comic book style. I loved the magazine "Heavy Metal" when I was a teen and there are echoes of that here too.

See you next week.


Friday, April 09, 2021

52 Fridays - The Nose Knows


I love this guy's nose, reminds my of Sammy Davis Junior's nose. Color again this week, this time no ballpoint ink under drawing, just some pencil to lay it out. I amped up the yellow and slate grey background for contrast. I wasn't able to play with the subtle textures like I normally like to do mostly because I am out of practice with drawing in color. 

This image came from the Instagram account of "lesboisquimurmurent" and is a "Bateba Lobi" or wooden carved figure made by the Lobi tribe of the Burkina Faso region of West Africa. 

When I see my drawing next to the original, I want to draw this again, but next time in black and white and focus on the form. I think I lost that with my the muddy use of color. Always better to try and fail than not try at all, or just watch TV, right?


Friday, April 02, 2021

52 Fridays - This Week in Living Color


Welcome to week fourteen of my "52 Fridays" art project. I'm changing this from a "drawing project" to the more general term art because I want latitude to play with different mediums. Sculpture, painting,  interpretive dance? Stay tuned and see what happens.

This week is a drawing of a wood carved figure of the Gurunsi tribe from West Africa (learn more at Africa 101 Lost Tribes). I found the photo on "Zachary Feere—African Art" Instagram's feed, which has been a treasure trove of amazing stuff and this is not my first time pulling something from there. I was drawn to this piece because of the strong cuts across the face that suggest ritual scarification or maybe, healed wounds. The epic nose and sensual lips and overall shape of the head also attracted me. I decided to add color to this piece and used color pencils to overlay my ballpoint drawing. My girlfriend, Ieva, commented that "He looks bloody.", which I didn't notice, but see that now. I think he looks like a warrior who has been through hell and out the other side and wears has scars proud.

Happy Friday and see you next week!


Friday, March 26, 2021

52 Fridays - Fast and Loose


"I'm better when I move..." A favorite line from "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid". This week's drawing is of the fast and loose variety. I seem to have two speeds, either "fast and loose" or "slow and tight". It is some insight into my psyche. The F & L drawings drop from a place of confidence and have more life. The S & T drawings rise from an opposite place of careful, too careful, consideration and a desire to disappear into the details. Somehow the F & L drawings manage to capture more of my soul, maybe because I am thinking less and just making marks, which feels good. 

This was drawn from an image found in the book, "African Art" by Frank Willet. This mask is from the Congo basin area of Africa and is called "Ngbangba Ikoro" and was carved by the Ibo tribe. I always include this information so you can research this if it inspires you like it does me. It's a holy act to speak those tribal names and draw their image with my own hand attaching some of my spirit to their's to keep that energy flowing. I'm not trying to appropriate the culture, rather, I hope that it will appropriate me.

Happy Friday amigo,


Sunday, March 21, 2021

The New Logo - Keep it Simple


This is the new official Weaverwerx logo. What do you think? I have a bad habit of over-thinking everything and have been mulling over a new logo design for some time, too long. I was sketching out some ideas tonight and drew this and immediately liked the loose, hand-made quality. It is authenticate to where I am at the moment with the Weaverwerx thing. It's not really a business right now, just an umbrella to throw over top of whatever I happen to be messing with. I think it would look good on a t-shirt. Always best to keep it simple. I'll leave off the "stupid" part of that meme as there's no need to beat myself up over this. 


Friday, March 19, 2021

52 Fridays - I Didn't Draw This for You


Just sayin'. Not you specifically, but anyone, everyone. If I start thinking about an audience, I get self-conscious and the drawing is dead. All the magic and mystery leaks out onto the floor. This week's drawing is called "I dreamed I disappeared, but I was wrong." It's built from the leftovers of last week's drawing, those splotches are the bleed through of the India ink on the page below. The ink went through several more pages creating ever smaller and fainter shapes, so I will continue to harvest this randomness. I like how the ink has warped the paper creating a subtle series of dunes, like a desert. 

See you next week.


Friday, March 12, 2021

52 Fridays - The Headless Troll King of the Free Flat Land


Greetings friends and welcome to another happy Friday! This week's drawing is an original piece I call, "The Headless Troll King of the Free Flat Land". I used a technique of randomness beginning with a couple of drops of brown India ink on paper charged with clean water. I let it dry and then looked at it from all angles, seeing different things. A process not unlike looking for shapes in clouds. This strange troll, orc thing was what I found. Somebody call a psychiatrist! I enjoy drawing from real life objects (or photos thereof), but part of that exercise is to add layers to the compost pile; build a vocabulary of mystery to articulate my own thang. 

See you next week!


Friday, March 05, 2021

52 Fridays - Teotihuacán Head Mexico

Welcome to week ten of this 52 Friday's drawing project. This week I was inspired by an image from a book called "Before Cortes Sculpture of Middle America" from the MOMA online library.  Great site to visit if you have a few hours, days or weeks to burn. I find the I'm compelled to draw pieces that have some damage; chips, cracks, worn surfaces; something that has a bit of character. This is the face from a female figure carved from greenstone. I think I will draw her again sometime as I'm not completely satisfied with this one. I drew the forehead to high and the eyes are too small. I also think my tones are too flat. I took too much time and over thought it a bit. Even so, I had fun making this drawing. Not a bad way to pass a Friday evening...

Have a good one,


Friday, February 26, 2021

52 Fridays - Ibo Mmaji Mask


Happy Friday once again and the last one of February. This week's drawing is a "Mmaji (or maji or ma ubi) mask from Ibo, Nigeria I found in a book called, "Masks of Black Africa", that is in my personal library. Sometimes I prefer to draw from a book and take a break from the screens that dominate my life now (computer, phone and TV). I chose this mask because it is so weird and wonderful and just makes me smile. It is abstract and goofy and kind of cyberpunkish. I used a basic black Bic ballpoint ink pen.

I noticed that since I've begun this project that I am doodling more. I crave drawing. I'm compulsively making marks everyday now. It's my natural state. Go with the flow...

I hope you are safe, healthy and can go with your own flow.


Friday, February 19, 2021

52 Fridays - Kono Mask

Another Friday. Is time moving as fast for you as it is me? These winter, lockdown days are blurring together for me, but at least I feel we are moving in a better direction now. The COVID-19 numbers are going down, the vaccine is being distributed and the general madness has become background noise. But enough of all that, you are here for the art, all three of you, and thank you for dropping by. 

This week's drawing is another inspired from the fantastic IG feed by feereafricanart. From the description, this is a "Kono Mask" -  ex. Mauricio Lasansky, ex. Cooper Evans (perhaps these are the owners?). There are so many things I love about this mask; the big, round eye holes, the beard, bullet shaped head and contrast of textures. I may take another run at this one as I am dissatisfied with my rendering of the beard and missed capturing the full shape of the head, mine looks more like a bullet. Even so, I am content with my version. The beautiful color of the original is also compelling me to get out the prismacolor pencils. Stay tuned!

Stay safe and I challenge you to get creative! 



Friday, February 12, 2021

52 Fridays - Bassa Beauty

Happy Friday and week number seven of the "52 Fridays Drawing Project". Only forty-five weeks to go...

This week is an African woodcarving from the Bassa people (of Liberia) from an image I found on IG posted by "feereafricanart". The sweet, soft feminine quality of the face is what compelled me to draw this. Unfortunately, I completely missed capturing that quality, as my image is decidedly more masculine. I read somewhere that all art is self-portraiture and I think this sketch proves that theory. Even so, I still like the drawing that I made as it has it's own life. Perhaps that beautiful woman gave birth to a beautiful son? I like the shape of this face, full at the crown and narrow at the chin. Reminds me of a seed. Plant this, nurture it and grow yourself a beautiful friend. 

See you next week.


Saturday, February 06, 2021

52 Fridays - It's Friday Somewhere...

All good intentions and all of that... yeah, so week six and I have already missed posting on a Friday, but it's got to be Friday somewhere right? Better to carry-on and get back on track. The harsh critic, doubter part of my brain whispered, "No one's looking at this, so why bother?" and "The world is awash in unasked for content that no one has time to look at. Why add to the noise?". Why indeed? Because I enjoy making these drawings. It just feels good to make art, make anything and be active and not passive. 

This week's subject is a terra cotta figurine from Mali that I found on IG posted by "la_chefferie_paris". There is a vulnerability to this figure, something in the awkward, sitting pose, missing arms and directness of the gaze. I may draw this again as I would like to spend more time exploring the subtle textures and shadow interplay.

See you again next Friday-is...


Friday, January 29, 2021

52 Fridays - Bad Drawing? All Good

Happy Friday and week five of this weekly drawing project. This week's subject is a weird, tiny building that I saw and photographed in Hakkaido, Japan. There is an abundance of weird, tiny buildings all over Japan, and I have amassed quite a collection, so this won't be the last weird, tiny Japanese building that I will draw. 

Is this a bad drawing? It's not great, but I enjoyed doing it and like some things about it, but it's not great. This drawing was actually my second attempt, my first effort was the next drawing to the lower left;  a quick ballpoint pen sketch that followed the original image more closely. Notice that I removed the fence in the second attempt to simplify the composition. This tiny building with the ridiculously large vent reminds me of a robot head and I decided to play with that vision, so did a few more quick sketches. I also did multiple drawings of this subject because I wasn't satisfied with any of these drawings. I felt like they were "bad" because I didn't capture the soul and character of the building as I remember it and what I see in the photo. Even so, I am satisfied with myself for pushing through and continuing to play with this subject, that was fun, so it is all good. The moral of the story is, keep pushing.

Now go do your own bad drawing!


Friday, January 22, 2021

52 Fridays - Totonac Mexican Skull

This week's Friday drawing is from an image from Instagram posted by "smithsiannmai" of a "Totonac pottery mold used to make sugar or paper maché skulls for Day of the Dead, ca 1940. Veracruz, Mexico". I drew this on December 12th. I love skulls and this one has a weird, simple quality and shape that made it fun to draw.

See you next week.