21 May 2008

[art, toons] The Year of Stan 102: The Coley Boley Archipelago

1566. This graphic is just heartbreakingly sweet and interesting.

In the middle ages, they had this stuff called Celtic knotwork. I've learned a few techniques about drawing it. If you've ever heard of the Book of Kells or the LIndisfarne Gospels, you've seen it. Incredibly detailed interlacing patterns that you can get absolutely lost in. They decorated the Irish monk's editions of the Gospels, and they encourage the reader to contemplate the infinite and to reason the unreasonable. Kind of the medieval version of the Zen koan.

Look very closely at this. If you've followed the story of Stan, then you know that he's married a lovely lady named Nicole (whose blog is also known as "Coley Boley") and moved to the state of Missouri where he, presumably, showing people things. Like his drawings!

Anywhoozle, if you look at the broken pattern between the letterforms, you can see the red lines, greeen spaces, and yellow spaces. highways, rural areas, and urban areas. Little highways connect towns and run through countryside in a beautiful little archipelago. And you follow the lines and get lost and make believe little people are driving cars down those roads, visiting other islands, seeing people and going about their business.

Now think that this is a present an artist gives his wife?

If you aren't touched by this, and impressed by this idea of romance, then you have no heart, my friend.

From someone who once created make-believe cities just for the fun of drawing maps, I must say, this is impressive work, fellow. Most impressive. Well done.

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