Insects Collage

I made a postcard for friends in Basel. It shows the insect life in Crete.

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Here are some details, and the work under construction.

 

 

The idea was that the flies would jump out of the window when it was opened. The postcard is painted using pigments made from the earth.

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Update 28th May: I learned by email that all insects arrived intact, and are now dangerously positioned next to a Gecko.

This collage postcard is inspired by the work of https://sendmeapostcart.com

Sketching in Crete 2019

The air in Crete was warm and damp. This affected the paper. See how the ink has spread in this pen and ink sketch at the airport:

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This is De Atramentis Black document ink on high quality watercolour paper, Saunders Waterford, in a small book 6″ by 4″ from the Vintage Paper Company.

After that, I used pencil and watercolour only. Here is a view of the Akrotori peninsula. The warship is lurking in the NATO base.

We lived with insects. At a hand movement, other movements occurred, in the air, on the kitchen surfaces, on the floor. Ants made their way across the breadboard, collecting crumbs or notifying HQ of the location of the honey drip. Beetles arrived suddenly, folded their wings and inspected the floor. I tried drawing them.

Two geckos made their miraculous appearance some evenings and early mornings. They emitted small squeaks.

These are images made on “sun print” paper, using plants, and cut-out paper shapes. The geckos are a species of nocturnal reptile: Hemidactylus turcicus or Mediterranean House Gecko. They are insectivorous, eating, amongst other things, moths. I wondered if they would like to live in the Barbican ducts. It must be quite warm in there, and they would be entirely welcome to devour the moths.

They stick to the walls not with suckers but with hairs on their feet. The feet of geckos are subject of intense scientific interest, I read, since these hairs are so configured that they get close to the wall on an atomic scale (10 nanometers or so). At this distance the molecules of the feet attract, rather than repel, the molecules of the wall. There is a whole compendium of physics effects which make this possible: quantum mechanical, electrostatic, surface tension.  There could be an entire undergraduate course on the feet of the Gecko.

Outdoors there is landscape…

…and a garden.

I am learning to draw clouds. There were a lot of them.

I am learning to draw quickly. Here are some very quick sketches from cafés.

The grass was cut around the lower buildings in ancient Aptera, revealing arches.

Arches make poetry in the Agia Triada monastery: a pre-departure pause….

…before the airport.

Technical details

Pictures done in sketchbooks:

Using Watercolour box 1:

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Sun print paper was from Cowling and Wilcox on the Kingsland Road. It is called “Sunography”. I printed it on both sides.

Excelsior, LT472, Lowestoft

I sketched “Excelsior” which was moored in Lowestoft Heritage Quay.

She is a former fishing smack, built 1921, now a training vessel based at Lowestoft.

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LT472 Excelsior 9″x7″ watercolour [original sketch SOLD, prints available]

The water was very muddy because a dredger was at work in the river channel, providing education and entertainment to those on the jetty.

It took me 1 hour 15 minutes to draw Excelsior. I was sitting on the concrete, facing away from the dredger entertainment and looking at Excelsior through a fence.

Here is work in progress.

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