20 April 2021

Drawing Tuesday - strange shapes

 Would you agree that shadows make the strangest shapes of all? The distortion - as they fall at an angle and hit surfaces at other angles - makes them hard to "read".

Or perhaps what makes "strangeness" of shapes is previous expectation - our minds take a while to analyse what we might actually be seeing.

Reversing, distorting and combining letters can make for very strange shapes. 

Strange negative spaces can enhance the strangeness of already-strange shapes. 

We're apparently programmed to look for - or see - faces wherever possible, but these might look very strange indeed and still look like faces!

Picasso's portraits of the women in his life have some very strange shapes in them. Distortion can be deliberate, or it can be intuitive. 

Would you agree that distortion=strangeness? Or might you be looking for "natural" forms that diverge so much from the usual that they seem strange - my example would be the beak of the spoonbill. Or the curlew, come to that - both adapted to their purpose but so exaggerated that they seem strange on first encounter.

It could be that something we've become used to seeing  will become strange when seen in low light, or from an unusual angle. 

From Mags - On my daily walks seeing strange creatures  emerge  from  huge wooden structures  left  among the brambles , I feel like  Mary Anning! Rubbings with crayons on  used Colour Catchers. 

From Sue K - Here’s my fuzzy pastel rendering of a shadow spotted on the kitchen floor - some snappy creature snapping at blue circles.

From Richard - Our attic ceiling provides interesting shapes, light and shade, plus I thought that if I sat close to my subject (had to crane neck up and down to take it all in) then an interesting perspective might follow. It didn’t. My brain must have rationalised it into what one expects to see; very disappointing. Clearly, I’m not David Hockney, nor Lucien Freud …… Ah well, enjoyable just to put 2B to paper.

From Najlaa - scutoids and a vase -

From Judith - Strange shapes from a reflective sculpture and a cut up cardboard box.

From Ann - Batik pieces transformed into an abstract composition. 

Unsure how this next strange shape came to me but liked the palette of colour.

From Joyce - ivy clinging to a tree in my local woods this morning. Can you hear the birds singing? It was so nice to be there sketching, bluebells coming out together with celandines and wood anemones.

From Gill - I’m on an all week art course but managed to do this while listening to other students during a crit.

From me - the strange shapes of "things behind things" - not quite negative space, but also they can be unidentifiable ... I can't figure out what some of them were!

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