The bees (above) were photographed at the lovely farm wedding we attended a few weekends past. I was charmed with the hive surrounded by queen anne's lace and grasses along with the actual bees--flying towards their home, ignoring us and happy to amongst themselves. I am a bee lover from way back...I love the way they look, the simplicity of keeping bees, and the symbolic aspect of bees. Napoleon represented himself with a bee as did royals. The bee is used by the mormons as a representative of their productivity and community with one of Brigham Young's houses called the Beehive. A member of the Freemasons in Mill Valley wrote a wonderful paper on bees and what they mean here>> Dig this:
"...the emblem of the bee hive is found in an Irish expose called The Early Masonic Catechisms printed in 1724:
"A bee has in all Ages and Nations been the Grand Hierogliphick of Masonry, because it excells all other living Creatures in the Contrivance and Commodiousness of its Habitation or combe; … nay Masonry or Building seems to be of the very Essence or Nature of the Bee, for her Building not the ordinary Way of all other living Creatures, is the Generative Cause which produces the Young ones. (you know I suppose that Bees are of Neither Sex.)
For this Reason the Kings of France both Pagans and Christians, always Eminent Free-Masons, carried three Bees for their Arms.
What Modern Masons call a Lodge was for the above Reasons by Antiquity call'd a HIVE of Free-Masons, and for the same Reasons when a Dissention happens in a Lodge the going off and forming another Lodge is to this Day call'd SWARMING. (wording and spelling of 1724)" (Roberts, The Craft and Its Symbols, p. 73)
I was at our local Farmers Market and found the Bee man, Mr. Waid from Interlaken who had big beeswax pillar candles and bee pollen for sale. Of course, I had to buy it...and spent some time talking bees with him. He and his wife told me that they rent their bees to farmers for $70. Mr. Waid puts them in his truck (?moving the hive?) and takes them gently down the road. Unloads them and allows them to help pollinate the farmer's field and then, brings them back to his place. Then they exolled the virtues and values of bee pollen when you ingest it...preventing or mollifying allergens in the air. Local pollen and honey> Local bees> Local environment that we are part of . Nice understandable cycle that makes sense to me. Anything to reduce the need for seldane or any of the other magic drugs that are almost necessary on the shoulder seasons.
So, bees are deep, cool and beautiful. Hold that thought for some pictures.
I am very pleased to have gotten 12 pieces out to the Society of Illustrators LA show yesterday. It takes a bit of time to get the files all right and tight. I had a nice chat with Alice from SILA who was helpful in explaining work arounds in getting the files to them for the show. Its a bit hinky with their new tool, but the thought and intent is good. It will be better, I am sure, next year. But hey you guys, if you are entering, the last day is September 19th....and we should know who is in, and who isn't by Thanksgiving! SOI NYC is coming up too, so the SILA prep will get you ready for the New York show.
Murray pulled me out of the mud yesterday...pointing, nudging and guiding. He was talking about the topic of Adam and Eve/Garden of Eden saying that this here was something to get my teeth into. He thought the monkeys needed a rest. He suggested I look at Today's Inspiration for the new writing and images of Jan Balet.
Jan Balet from Today's Inspiration
Also to read up on Doris Lee, her husband Arnold Blanch, Milton Avery and others who really set the stage for some of the storybookartists such as the Provensens. There is a lovely exhibit of Doris Lee's work at the D. Wigmore Fine Art site>> Okay, Murray--I am beginning to see it...
Doris Lee (1905-1983)
Woman in a Garden
20 x 29 7/8 inches, gouache and watercolor on board, signed lower right
I got off the phone feeling the rock off my shoulders and fired up to learn about these artists and two, to get going on some pictures to do with the Garden Story. I am shifting gears and will present this as a slick cover for a children's religious magazine..or myths and legends thing. Murray suggested (as I will chase this for my thesis) that this become a children's book. As usual, I was negative, but after a night's sleep and a bit of thinking...this is probably a good idea. I think I do not worry about making is super sweet...just in doing a bang up job. Maybe R. can help me with the simplifying of the story. This is great. Simply great. I can draw this stuff for a year, no problem.
We also talked about drawing and the computer. My thinking is that the computer freezes an illustrator because making perfect curves and flat shapes has a draw for an artist as the appeal for perfect is alluring. I have been sucked in by this. However in losing the drawn line, the quirkiness of the hand of the illustrator, the errors and wobbles, the life is gone from the drawing and becomes perfect shapes, logotypes without a soul. I think if I can come up with a working method paralleling the Ron Mazellen approach, where the computer helps to refine, becomes a method of hastening the mid steps and becoming invisable in the final product this shold be my goal. I know in the vector approach I started at Syracuse, there is the intent to have the work look like screenprints and actually reduced the process down to working in vectors and the pathfinder tools to hasten the process along. Only flat color (like screen prints) reduced palette (the now thinking) and shape reduction...breaking it out like circus posters or prints...that the imprint of the computer was diminished. Now the challenge is to do the same with the hand drawn image. I think there are some tricks here....
Gotta go. Like I said the other day, there may be a trip to Aurora today! I'll take my picture machine! More later.