Above: A notebook page drawn while visiting the (excellent) Cleveland Museum of Natural History this week.
Below: A notebook page drawn while visiting the (also excellent) Mütter Museum in Philadelphia back in 2012.
Filed under: diaries
A diary collage made out of a guidebook from The Whitney
Some of the kids’ drawings fall into the “I don’t want to recycle this, but I can’t see keeping it in a folder,” and those often get pasted into my notebook. Funny thing is, I have a hunch that these collaged scraps will mean more to me in the future than some perfect, saved drawing. (“Oh, this is when J was into drawing Kraftwerk and O was into playing waiter…”)
“A very sensible day yesterday. Saw no one.”
—Virginia Woolf, Jan. 31, 1939
I still find collage — glueing one thing to another — the most restorative thing I can do to get back to a good place in my work. It never fails to get me unstuck. These two collages were, fittingly, made from a Restoration Hardware catalog. The robot above was made for my 5-year-old, and the comic below was art directed by the same 5-year-old. (It’s been a happy, lazy Sunday.)
My sons draw all the time, but they don’t seem to care one bit about their drawings after they make them (I envy them), so they leave piles of finished and half-finished drawings everywhere. I go through them and find scraps of construction paper that I want to paste in my notebook. Sometimes I’ll make a collage out of them:
And sometimes I’ll actually use one of the drawings as a writing prompt, like this scribble of the digestive system Owen drew:
In a way, the page becomes a collaboration between us, even though I rarely ask their permission. See also: Orchestrated drawings.
Back in January, I decided that my new notebook needed a guardian spirit to watch over things. Emily Dickinson seemed right.
I felt like Emily D kept a good watch, so when I finished that notebook, I decided to continue the practice. I burned through 8 notebooks this year, so I had to pick 8 spirits…
For the next notebook, the collage artist Hannah Höch.
Then, since summer is a hateful season to me, I went with H.W. and Daniel Plainview from There Will Be Blood.
George Strait’s hat, swiped, again, from The New Yorker.
Walt Whitman, with my 2-year-old’s scribbles over his face.
A drawing of a robot by my 4-year-old.
Finally, for my last notebook of the year, here’s Jack Lemmon from The Apartment.