Wednesday, October 25, 2017

shape is a fundamental element. I keep coming back to this unit. a shape is an aspect. an aspect of a given face, an aspect of a given drawing, an aspect of a given anything. and if a given face has some particular set of aspects and a drawing has that same set of aspects than the two will match. as in the whole is equal to the sum of its parts. there will be in the drawing a perfect likeness to the face. So it’s as simple as that and it starts here. but to get a perfect likeness is an impossible or nonsensical task until you add another element to the mix, and what is that element? well i think it’s actually a matter of language. but whatever it is, it functions to limit the number of aspects so you don't have to draw and examine forever.

i'd always thought about there being two types of drawing: one from observation and one from the imagination, but i think i see it all as observation. there's the part of our mind that we don't have immediate access to, but we do have some kind of access to it  and so it's the same as drawing from observation. i don't have access to what a horse looks like but i do have some kind of access to it. when i look at it i can find some information about what a horse looks like that i didn't have immediate access to. all i really mean to say is that the important element about the external that we draw observationally, this internal semi or subconscious part of us also shares. and if i am to do work that i myself find interesting, it would need to have something present within it, some stimuli that i'm not able to freely conjure with my conscious mind or indeed why wouldn't i?

Tuesday, October 17, 2017


are opposicatures possible? well. it would just be a drawing of a completely different person who may be out there somewhere hypothetically. something about opposicatures doesnt sit with me. right now im thinking about maybe its the idea that perhaps likeness is what links a caricature to its subject matter. i think one of the key elements that sets caricatures and maybe portraits too, but i would say especially caricatures, apart from other artforms is the link between the drawing and the subject matter. also with jazz theres a thing called standards which means there's a limited number of familiar songs and then those songs are covered every which way by different artists and even by the same artists in different performances. but the set of standards is fairly limited to keep that link between the version of the song being performed in that moment and the standard it's referencing. but the point im getting at is that i think the link is important and how that link is established is important and i suspect that likeness is a big part of the link. and if the drawing looks a hundered times more like larry bird than it does steve urkle and its hillarious in this regard as all caricatures should be than how is it linked to steve urkle? because i say it is? and with jazz standards too it isnt just linked in nomenclature either. its linked because people have an affinity for particular songs and that's why the songs are covered by the jazz musicians.

another thing is i think that caricatures ought to hit you without having to think about it. i think ideally you're doing things that seem like they ought not to work but then they do, and what i mean by work is i mean hit you, feel like the person, ideally without thinking about it, and i think the ideal realm is the realm we have to opperate in when were defining things. but an opposicature you'd have to think about. It would be too cerebral if even cerebral. caricatures work because our mind uses the function of likeness to recognize people without even thinking about it. our mind has no need and no interest to recognize the opposite of what people look like, if such a thing can even be rightly conceived of.

for me what distinguishes one face from another is not the proportions of whatever dimensions but rather the hodge podge of shapes that make up the face, again ideally. if we talk about big nose versus small nose, i still wonder what kind of nose. and wouldnt the opposite of a very big nose be no nose at all? or would it be a very very small nose?

but i'm certainly picking , no pun intended, something apart which is at it's core about humor. an opposicature is possible. you can just say who it's  suppose to be and use your sense of humor to find the funny possibilities. so i guess thats my final answer, but the idea of opposicatures got my brain spinning a little bit and we had a good little run there.

could it be an issue that most art has caricature and subject matter built into it, and "Caricatures" the artform, points to a peice and then claims that the subject matter is out there. or it claims that you or someone you love is the subject matter. could this be a problem? hmm. So then, if a caricature is to be art or to put it differently, if it is to be worth while, it seems like it would need to address two subject matters. one being the likeness of the individual and the other being whatever else. i guess something more universal. 

speaking of that, I was thinking about how live caricatures are different from stand up comedy in certain ways. One of the big ones that has recently come to mind is that a stand up comedian's subject matter is different from a live caricature artist's. A stand up comic's subject matter is the human experience which we all share equally. A live caricature artist's subject matter is the likeness of this individual which these people, the customer's and their friends and stuff may be more intimately connected with. And then, as I stated above, I guess it would need another subject matter in addition.