Friday, January 22, 2016

draw an A

Linguists call it alef, but then they call all A's alef. I think of it as a sound.

In Japanese calligraphy the brush strokes for each character are ritualized. There is a definite starting point and for a reason, the way the ink trails off by the brush stroke is of crucial importance, the brush strokes themselves impart a visual energy.

I expect the same thing is true for these. The characters did endure a long time. You don't just go sketching birds willy-nilly, and you don't build them up from scritchty-scratchy scribbles either finding your lines. The lines are known, codified, because they've been drawn a million times. It seems to me you establish the central-ness of the breast first and the weight of the bird by by its back. Either the back or the breast first. Then everything follows. The breast and the back established by the beak and the shape of the head. So not actually first, but of first interest, having the weight at the center of the block.

Birds can be a bit frustrating too. The tiniest line makes all the difference as the space between lines. This Egyptian vulture in hieroglyphics is hardly distinguishable from another long-legged vulture and when the work is worn or the copy damaged then it becomes impossible to distinguish between them. Flat head is the key.

They are drawn with flat heads but not horizontal to the ground.  That's one way to tell them apart. G1 and G4 on the signs list.

48 seconds.

26 seconds, a savings of 22 seconds.

Very eloquent. Nice job. Here's how I do it. 


ricpic said...

Seed Of Destruction

There are two great desires:
The desire to codify;
The desire to smash.

Remember to bank fires:
Rush not to modify;
Ruin follows rash.

ricpic said...

My poem, if anybody cares, is about the Egyptian mania to get a form just so. And no other so. Which contains within it......

Needless to say the Egyptians resisted the impulse to smash their own just so forms for millennia. Probably because the impulse didn't exist in them. Why? Because they, though artists, were not yet individuals.

Chip Ahoy said...

True dat.

The lines are codified, yet the spelling is not. The symbols themselves can be adjusted for headset, plant, north and south what have you, but the way they're drawn is rigid.

Have you read the journals of Lewis and Clark?

If Clark's spelling was versatile and his grammar rough hewn—in a day when the rules were less firmly established than today—Lewis was not altogether a model in those respects, in spite of his more elegant literary style.


Time magazine wrote about the writing, "Lewis was a very imaginative

[You must turn the page to continue.]


Ha ha ha, planned or not, that there is funny!

deborah said...

god decided to invent
everything he took one
breath bigger than a circustent
and everything began

when man determined to destroy
himself he picked the was
of shall and finding only why
smashed it into because

e.e. cummings

deborah said...

Thanks, ricpic, more of that please. I esp. like 'remember to bank fires.'