Shirt as objet d’art


Shirt as objet d'art

I wake up and creak down the stairs to the kitchen. Kettle on; I brew tea. Plod back up the stairs and swing left into my little studio. Point bottom into Ikea easy chair and dunk the first biscuit. Assume some brain activity going on but to call it thinking might be taking it a bit far. Dunk second biscuit and focus eyes on the clean shirt which last night I hung on the back of my swivel office chair. Extend right leg, hooking foot under seat and pull it towards me. Chair becomes footstool. Look at shirt, vacantly. I have to sketch this shirt today. Don’t know why, just have to.

Still in PJs. Get out sketchbook and a 2B pencil (Staedtler, my favourite). I am having difficulty with the left shoulder; this is not going to be done in 10 minutes.

Interruption #1: I put on a pair of jeans and some shoes, slipping a leather bomber jacket over my PJ top, and take the recycling bins out ready for early morning collection.

Back up in the studio I ponder the fact that I cannot both sketch my shirt and wear it at the same time, at least not the way I have posed it now. This reminds me of my friend Tom’s decision not to photograph our full English breakfast as a project last week because it would have interfered with eating breakfast.

Interruption #2 I find another shirt to wear for today.
I am having problems with the pocket. I realise that there is something structurally adrift when I look at the negative space formed by the line of the shoulder, the arm the top of the pocket and the row of shirt buttons going up to the neck. I work on this for a while.

Interruption #3 I have to drive someone somewhere. This is not a surprise, since I had said I would do it last night. I would have liked to have sorted that pocket out.
I decide to play some piano, now that I am back home. This doesn’t go too well. I return to the sketch and start to put in some detail and a little shading.

Interruption #4 I agree, reluctantly, to drive somebody into the city.

I am now home and instead of continuing immediately with the sketch, I make some lunch. Back in the studio I finish the pencil sketch and start to mix the colour for the watercolour washes I want to use on the shirt and chair upholstery.  This is going well; I am enjoying myself. I put the wash on the shirt first, then dry it off with an old hairdryer I keep for the purpose. Then I put on the second wash and finish things off. I scan the pic and then upload it for the blog here. It is now 4 pm and I  am feeling sleepy, so I am going for a nap……

…. That’s better. I popped some spuds on to boil for my dinner and slung some supermarket quorn and mushroom pies in the oven. My watch timer is on; I have about 20 minutes to finish this blog, unless I continue during or after my meal. While I was getting the potatoes ready, it occurred to me that this post has been primarily about my sketch. In an illustrated journal the illustration should provide comment on the primary diurnal activity. I seem to have gotten things round the wrong way at present. Yesterday was the day of the boot, today that of the shirt. I shall get this posted now, so I can eat in peace. Speak to you later, my dear blogophiles.

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