19 May 2015

[liff in Cascadia] Drawing Mount Saint Helens on Her 35th Anniversary

I adore the anniversary of the Mount Saint Helens eruption. So much archival footage. So available via the internet. So many gratuitous apostrophes.

It's Mount Saint Helens, not Mount Saint Helen's. Just so we all know. Now that I've said that, I feel better; I can move on.

Specifically, I'm going to be taking up an art project that I've attempted once already. I've printed out, courtesy of the intarwebz, two pictures of Loo-wit in full-throated roar from May of 1980, thus:

I'm going to rendering one of these in graphite, more than likely on Bristol board. The idea of these monochrome studies are intriguing and beguiling because I can picture the techniques I'd use to do it; the laying down of the graphite, the blending out, the marks I might make for details; the lifting out of layers of gray with kneadable eraser; I can see every technique I might use. I've used them all before in smaller, much less consequential drawings. I've never used them all in such concert, though.

The thing is, I'm intentionally swinging for the fences here. I will either come out of this project clearly punching above my artistic weight or making of it a beautiful failure. I don't think I can wait until I'm ready for this, though. I've got to do it now whether or not I'm ready. Cannot explain why that is, but I'm sure it's evident in one form or another, if only ineffably.

I'll post status updates as I work through the various stages, and the hashtag will be #MtStHelensArt35. 

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