Chronicling the creative process for Pop Zeus, the forthcoming Guided By Voices/Bob Pollard tribute comic- including sketches, concepts, finished art and whatever else is in my brain at the moment.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Isolation


Here it is: my inner Sanctum Sanctorum (photo circa 2004). The place where the magic happens, where I will be spending the next few months... alone.

Isolation is something I have given a lot of thought to lately. For some artists, like musicians in bands, dancers or collaborative artists in other fields, the creative process is something shared with other artists. And ultimately, many artists either perform their art or share it in some fashion with an audience, pride and acclaim soon follow.

But, bear witness, dear reader, to the plight of the comic book artist! Not only does my work necessitate many hours spent home alone, but then it is sent out into the world to be read by faceless strangers who rarely communicate their thoughts. It is a singularly solitary artistic experience. And it's not that I'm complaining!

As a highly imaginative kid, I spent a lot of time alone playing with toys, reading, drawing or coloring. And as I developed into a painfully shy adolescent, I isolated myself even more- long hours reading comic books or sketching while blasting extremely loud music, much to my family's chagrin. It was only after my journey through art school that I began to come out of my shell.

But as an adult (more or less), I still value and really need that "alone time". The time I spend drawing is my primary way of fully entering the much discussed "zone". I totally lose track of time and get into a really relaxed, deep thought state of mind. That time recharges and connects me to a core part of myself. And as a naturally introverted person, too much socializing depletes me of energy anyway.

The trick is balance- how to take the time that I need without becoming a pasty face moleman who cannot communicate with words (it's happened). As an introvert, it is very tempting to get wrapped up in a project and neglect my friends and family, health and mental well-being. And in the midst of a big project, I've been known to vanish for weeks on end.

So, off I go again into the cave. Let me know if I disappear. And I'll see you on the other side, good people of the sunshine and fresh air!

P.S.- this post has nothing to do with Valentine's Day being tomorrow... sort of

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