07 September 2016

[art] Draw With A Vengeance: The Guided Sketchbook For Those Who Need To Come To Terms With Their X And Don't Have Bail Money

Everyone has an 'X'.

You know who they are. An X-lover, and X-boss, an X-friend, an X-spouse. They messed with you and how. It was evil, what they did. And, if this was a fair world, you could have your vengeance and it would be sweet and nobody would turn you in and if they did the courts would see what a virtuous thing you had done and let you off with a sincere apology and perhaps a cash payment for the inconvenience.

You do have a problem though. This isn't a fair world; this is Earth, where such behavior is frowned upon. And you have no bail money in the budget.

What to do, what to do. Well, sweet, sweet revenge comes cheap, actually, and nobody can indict you for it, if you impose a suitable amount of coin upon your friendly neighborhood art-book purveyor and acquire a copy of the guided sketchbook Draw With A Vengeance: Get Even In Ink and Let Karma Handle The Rest. 

This is the sketchbook version of all those friends you get comfort from in the wake of a break-up. They accept you for who you are. They don't judge. They take your side. They don't criticize your drawing style; they just help your catharsis.

The first think after you notice that the author's byline, Helen Wrath, would be a pun on the whole idea if you didn't know any better, is that the drawing prompts inside are friendly in that, though they're potent, the drawings themselves are simple. They get you. They want you to feel totally comfortable drawing there. You can make it as simple or complex as you want, and they won't judge:

  • A simply- yet realistically-drawn bear snarling in attack, with a caption encouraging you to Draw X in a meat bikini.
  • A t-shirt featuring concentric circles in the chest area has a legend telling you to Draw X wearing this shirt. Tear this page out and pin it to the wall. Get darts. See how many times you can hit the bullseye.
  • A drawing of the stern of a pirate ship (complete with Jolly Roger) on the recto comes with a verso instruction Draw a plank. Now draw X on the plank. Now erase the plank.
Not to forget the 'destroy this sketchbook' crowd, Wrath has thought of you, too; As suggested in one of the bulleted points above, several pages are designed to be torn out, and each one of these has a venomous punchline on the other side; the page with a blank space captioned Draw X with open arms. Now tear this page out and use it to pick up dog poo has a large X on the back with the phrase YOU'VE FINALLY FOUND YOUR CALLING. Similarly a page encouraging you to Draw X with 100 tiny cuts. Tear this page out. Squeeze fresh lemon juice all over X is backed with the phrase WHEN LIFE GIVES YOU LEMONS, USE THEM.

If, by now, you don't get the idea, then you don't have an X yet. Lucky! For those who do, though ...

The debate continues as to whether or not venting is actually any good for you; and we all know art therapy is a thing. We all know sometimes you just need catharsis. Well, this book is cheaper than just about any therapy and allows you to do something constructive with your urge to be destructive. As the back of the book says,
The message here is simple: don't do bad things to bad people. Draw bad things - and let karma handle the rest. 
You can't but agree with that, I think. For those with a dark sense of humor and an X they need to get out of their head, this book is just what you ordered.

Publisher: Running Press, www.runningpress.com
ISBN: 978-0-7624-5919-3
Retail Price: $13.00 US, $16.50 Canada, GBP 8.99

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