Aloe

A houseplant, given to us by some Scandinavians who lived here but have now returned to the northern climes.

Drawn with the aid of Hibernal 2016 from Vinařství Šabata: a half-sweet wine, still a little too sweet for my tastes but good for all that.

It has been a busy week art-wise, but most of what I have drawn is for a project that has not yet been finished; and a busy and somewhat difficult few months for various other reasons – some good, some bad, all of them the common lot of mankind. (And most of womankind too.)

Ab altitudine diei timebo: ego vero in te sperabo. From the height of the day I shall fear: but I will trust in Thee. – Ps. 56 (or 55, in the old numbering.)

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Berserker: Addendum

Concept art related to the last post. I’ve created a Duck (formerly DrunkDuck) account for comics (the Berserker pages can now be seen here), as a WordPress blog isn’t quite the ideal format for posting them.

Berserker

So, my mother had an idea for a comic about a family of hereditary berserkers living in polite society and trying not to be too murderous. She is currently outlining some stories; I think she is imagining costume drama with social commentary and occasional axe murder but I’m not sure.

Below is what came to mind when I started thinking about the idea…

(This has been rated “PG – not suitable for cat lovers” and placed behind a “read more” tag as a result.) (You can also click here to see the results at The Duck, which is a comics-hosting site.)

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George and Dragon

But a lady has written me an earnest letter saying that fairy tales ought not to be taught to children even if they are true. She says that it is cruel to tell children fairy tales, because it frightens them… Fairy tales do not give the child his first idea of bogey. What fairy tales give the child is his first clear idea of the possible defeat of bogey. The baby has known the dragon intimately ever since he had an imagination. What the fairy tale provides for him is a St. George to kill the dragon.

— G. K. Chesterton, Tremendous Trifles ch. 17, “The Red Angel”

The first time I read this (as a student) I was unsure how seriously to take it (I did not remember much what it was like being a child). But since then I have noticed that he was in fact correct, and the dragon goes back even before the imagination. A month-old baby, who has no language, no concept of separate objects, no concept of “me” vs. “stuff that isn’t me”, can still have nightmares.

This is something about which I am somewhat curious – when small babies smile in their sleep, or gurn in distress, what are they dreaming about? I suppose it’s an unanswerable question; their thoughts are too formless to render in language.

Regarding art, I still don’t properly have the hang of watercolour pencils. More efforts are needed.