Monday, 22 February 2010

on dust and drawing

Today I managed to clean the house, and then empty the bag of the vacuum cleaner, which had been needing emptying for some time. As usual I am astonished at the amount of soft grey dust packed into the bag. It occurs to me to wonder if I could use it as a drawing material, but I would think that the acid content is rather high, which would eventually compromise the drawing paper. Despite the minimal, fragile and ephemeral nature of my drawings, I nevertheless take care that they are made on acid free, buffered watercolour paper, and I rest my hand on a piece of linen as I work, so I touch the paper as little as possible. I store them between sheets of acid free tissue paper and try to use in their making only materials having a high degree of permanence. The use of wax crayon and felt tip meant a departure from those strictures, and I have no idea how these materials will age. I imagine that the felt tip will lose its brightness, and that the individual colours will assume a brown homogeneity. I hope that the wax crayon retains its bright, soft colours.
The dust from the hoover bag is wonderfully fine, and of an even mid grey. It coats my hands as I empty the bag.
Motivating myself to clean the house, or to do anything at all, is a Hercluean task.
This is indeed a difficult period. I find it painful to try and make decisions, as I cannot trust myself. This makes drawing well nigh impossible. Much of the time I question myself as to why I should continue to attempt to make art at all. Depression saps one of joy, wraps one in a shroud of doubt, and loss of hope.

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