...as in cross-hatch.
Last month I was thinking about my hero Maurice Sendak, and the amazing worlds he has created in humble pen and ink - as a little kid I would (and still do) soak right into the pages of my picture books and just exist inside them. I played with my friend Little Bear in the woods, I frolicked with monsters in faraway places, I knew and deeply loved every single character. Even when it is used, color is never at center stage in his drawings, like it is in almost every single thing I've ever created.
It got me thinking about cross-hatch work. Something I hadn't even tried for decades. So I pulled out the little Moleskine and started sketching Molly wandering in a quiet woods, a very Sendakian place I suppose. Not the greatest cross-hatching ever, as I was reminded that cross-hatch is not for the faint of heart. Or those of us in the slightest hurry. Seems to be more of a Zen thing than I was really prepared for when I started sketching.
My hand started to get a little tired. So as the sketch extended into the other page (I've always drawn from right to left to minimize left-hand-drag) I went for a simpler more instant-gratification style...
In retrospect, each style suits each animal appropriately. Molly sort of is a serious assemblage of straight little lines. Thoughtful and slightly mysterious. Flossie, on the other hand - fluffy, friendly, not very practical or realistic.
You know ... I don't do yoga, I haven't really meditated for-real in years - I'm thinking maybe I ought to take up cross-hatch drawing as a regular spiritual exercise. And then, once I've reached that illustrative astral plane, I'll go totally hard-core and revisit pointillism. Ooh!
Yeah, no. I probably won't. But it's a nice thought.