Gestural calligraphy series

rooster

Rooster

frigatebird

Frigatebird

bloodline3

Abstract calligraphy

bloodline2

Abstract calligraphy

Bloodline1

Abstract calligraphy

AfricanCrane

Grey crowned crane

lettercrow

calligraphic crow

head

portrait of a girl

heart1

heart of letters

tulips

pot of tulips

birdsinnest

baby birds in a nest

 

This series was made between 2013 and 2015 to experiment with calligraphic textures that occupy more or less defined areas. They also proved to be a relaxing therapy by not having to think too hard about what to write with a pen. It is related to automatic writing exercises where you shouldn’t think before writing and the hand is not controlled by the conscious mind.

Probably a good way of telling what you do not want to tell anyone, putting it on paper but also hiding it to make it unreadable. Or, you can simply write what people say around you. And then you give the shape and composition you want.


One of my professors in grad school liked the abstract ones especially
. I guess the gestural and abstract elements are what caught his attention. I like gestural calligraphy because the hand flows without having to express a coherent language, but must also retain control so the strokes are aesthetically pleasing. And it could mean anything.

For someone introverted like me, it can be a way of express yourself without having to say anything.

 

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The Raven

theCrow

This Corvid comes from a literary inspiration (Nevermore, of course). It started as a doodle, I ended up liking it so much that I kept working on it, adding the literary element (calligraphy) as a texture in the background. It could mean thought, it could mean blood, it could mean pain, it could mean a tortured soul, it could mean disorderly intelligence. The raven’s mission is to untangle the confusing thoughts and come up with an answer to the eternal question- what is this life all about?

Buy this smarty-pants bird print on Etsy: The Raven

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Series: Three Different Birds

red-crested-cardinalamerican robin illustration

 

These feathered friends were drawn in 2013. I was intrigued by dictionary art, where people print all sorts of images on old dictionary pages. We of course have our share of old books and encyclopedias. I remember I used to read our 8-volumes encyclopedia for whatever I could find, especially chemistry and technical concepts. (Go figure. Or not really. My mom used to be the electricity workshop teacher at a junior high school)

I didn’t have the nerve to cut out pages, so I scanned the ones I liked the most and made a collage with my calligraphy and once again, photos I took. The Red Crested Cardinal features a coral tree, very common in central Mexico. I grew fond of them since I watched them on the Cornell Lab of Ornithology Laysan Albatross live cam. It was a birb haven: besides the majestic ‘Trosses you can watch Hawaiian geese, egrets, mynahs, cardinals, roosters, and more.

The American Robin has a white birch tree on the background. I took that photo from a hotel room in Los Angeles. But the bird is one of my favorites, because I know their songs. I am just ecstatic when I listen to them. It’s so beautiful I could cry. I miss their songs so much during the fall and winter.

And the Blue-Footed Booby, as a respectable seabird, includes a set of buoys hung at some Santa Barbara pier. They are so cute with those blue webbed feet. Their courtship dance involves a lot of blue feet bragging. Just adorable. Ahoy!

With these pieces I thought human made artifacts will never be as perfect as nature made creatures.

 

Buy these prints on Etsy: Booby, Cardinal, Robin

Music and Words

portrait-with-words-paper-sculpture

A paper portrait. Not bad, huh?

Sometimes you discover a band after their most glorious period and that happened to me with Depeche Mode. Today they announced their 14th studio album but it’s been more than 20 years since their keyboardist and many other titles, Mr. Alan Wilder left the band. Rabid fans still long for his presence… but that’s a very different story. The case is, to me the band wouldn’t be what it is if he hadn’t been there. I discovered his solo project and never looked back.

As a fan I couldn’t help but try to make a portrait. I’ve drawn many portraits of the people I admire but this was the very first one that was made with paper. I tried to be as accurate as possible. But there’s always missing, I think. That’s why I’m not really a portrait girl anymore. I’m proud of this one, though. The blue background was painted with acrylic, and I used some writings with my calligraphy to make the base of the head.

Mr. Wilder’s music has a lot of the spoken word element, hence the name of the work: Music and Words.