Monday 14 December 2009

Art Monday: Fossil Boy, Diatom Girl

Our final project for my Drawing & Narrative class was more or less open. I decided to continue exploring ammonite fossils, hands, and some diatoms.

For a long time, I've used diatoms along with images of my wife, Michelle. Diatoms are beautiful algae that create complicated geometric structures from silica, and look like beautiful glass ornaments. They help create oxygen, which is a nice thing for an asthmatic like me to associate with my wife in a metaphorical life-sustaining way. The fossils are kind of a proxy for me. Part of the suggested outline for the assignment included making a book, and images of family.

Three of the most difficult things to draw are the face, hands, and feet. (Fore
shortening is a whole other problem.) I love drawing hands, so I looked at this as a challenge. I decided I would add some torn paper elements as well. While working on my rough sketches, our professor suggested including some elements with the Fibonacci sequence, and looking up artists Mario Merz. I've done some sketches using Fibonacci numbers before, when I was working on Dan Rhoads' Migrations blog banner. I tried to use it as a compositional device.

Almost in its entirety, (a snippet is lopped off from the edges), here are the drawings from the series Fossil Boy, Diatom Girl.

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Original artwork on The Flying Trilobite Copyright to Glendon Mellow
under Creative Commons Licence.
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Dan said...

Very nice. Of course you know that I like the Fibonacci structures, but the diatoms are something I like as well. It makes me think of my wife's work with marine ecosystems.

Glendon Mellow said...

Thanks Dan. This series of modest drawings feels a lot like a summary of the past year for me. Your blog banner commission is one of the highlights of the year, absolutely. A good friend of mine remarked again the other day how much your banner surprised him coming from me; he's smitten with it.

I didn't realize your wife was a biologist too! Very cool. Now I totally want to invite myself over for coffee to chat. :-)

Dan said...

Yep - she doesn't get to work with the diatoms, copepods and phytoplankton as much as she'd like these days, but still...

But yes, it would be fantastic to cross paths off the internet someday!

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