A sketch, with marks scrawled and scratched onto it, is a small act of bravery. Ink shows us thoughts, not things.
When I look at a drawing, and follow its lines, I see straight through history and culture. We read drawing as easily as we do writing, and it can expose an artist’s mind. It’s pretty scary to show your work publicly for this reason, at least for me. Indelible lines, for better or worse, record the exact moment they were drawn: learning and exploration sit in plain view. Clumsiness and elegance intertwine. There is, however, surprising flexibility in the medium, despite the fact that every mark put onto a blank sheet shows when the drawing is complete. Is it boldly defined in a few strokes, or pulled slowly out of emptiness? Is it preparatory to something larger, or is it a finished piece, a finished idea?
Studies of a Dead Hermit Thrush, ink on paper.