Tag Archives: spider lily red drawing process

Cocoon.

She was a compact two wheel drive in the modest shade of silver.
Previous owner from western Japan left a cigarette burn on the driver’s seat.
Sales man at the lot remarked on my face, said I look rusted like the car’s old engine.
Purchase was made in autumn 2011, the year everything felt like one big defeat.

Thought nothing good would come from this, turned out couldn’t be further from the truth.
Soon there were nights parked on a sand dune, curled up to hear the endless loop of waves.
We’d ride up the hills, into the storm and rest under the trees, wrapped in their unquestionable resiliency.
Most importantly though, she was a shelter with changing sceneries, encased my shedding, the morphing, the reaching for Creativity.

My humble, sturdy sidekick fell silent in the late February 2020.
“Cocoon spat me out” I said, I felt like a cicada freshly out of his, with soft pale green wings that harden overnight.
100 months in my modest silver cocoon, had brought me to where I always dreamt I’d visit.
We took one long ride together, thousands sunsets enclosed us along the way.

A wave on a cloudy beach.
Windshield rain shadows on a journal.
Cloudy sky through a driver seat.
A tree in rain through a windshield.
An abstract drawing in afternoon light.
Night Ocean.
Gardenia blossoms obstructed by leaves.
Artworks in a studio.
A windshield pattern on rainy drive.
Swans against water ripples.
A gardenia bouquet in an artist studio.
A self portrait on a curved mirror.
Textile art work in studio.
A rear view mirror self portrait.
Works in progress in artist studio.
A car parked on a rural road at dusk.

This post is dedicated, an ode to my sidekick, we had parted our ways in early April.
Photos are mostly taken with iPhone, all edited using vsco B5 filter.
All artworks are from the series “Spider Lily Red” (2012 – ).
The second selfie: “one eye” is a happenstance, I am so very much a ‘commoner’.
The sales man did not receive my vendetta; figured him being him would be the punishment enough ;)

Process is the Destination!!

Parable:

I am a lap swimmer, have been since early 1980’s. Been back and forth in aqua blue rectangles worldwide, total sum of distance I covered would, at this point, get me from Central Pacific JPN to the island of Guam I bet.

At one point in my 20’s I realized one thing: when I focus on getting “there” sooner, I’d have a terrible time, increasingly frustrated because, in rectangles “there” does not exist. If I focus on each stroke however, by the time I hit a kilometer I’d be high as a kite. I don’t cliche you on my website; this just simply my experience. Fitness a fringe benefit, hooked on this euphoria ever since.

Pictorial:

Macro closeup of spider lily petals.
A pencil drawing of spider lily petals.
A drawing of a spider lily petal in progress.
Pencil drawings of a spider lily petal in progress.
Artworks in studio.
An abstract spider lily petal drawing.
A hand painted flower dress in process.

Project:

Spider Lily Red (2012 – )

Photos, from top (date photographed):

Petal (September 22, 2013)

A casual, care-free snapshot of spider lily petals, from one of the early macro sessions that introduced me to their delicate / dynamic world.
The one in the middle became THE petal.

Study (November 11, 2013)

Pencil on paper. Started off equally care-free, quickly discovered the shape to be overwhelmingly complex.
Nearly tossed the whole thing in a bin, a trash bin that is.
Why / how I didn’t remains a mystery.

Develop (June 01, 2015)

Pencil on another paper, after few more drawing experiments and several dye tests. Incrementally molding it into my style of line drawing, initially inspired by engravings from 18th Century.

Expand (January 10, 2016)

Still pencil on paper. My interpretations of red spider lilies are translated into each flowing lines.
At least that’s what I think I’m doing, oki?
The kind of endeavor tends to take plenty o time.

Augment (December 01, 2016)

Acid dye on silk. Took about nine full months to paint the pencil drawing (the one below) – of the curly half of the petal I’d call it, on fabric.
Blow up copy on the wall is a drawing of the wavy half of the petal, by the way is painted on the project’s second piece at the time of this writing, in late November 2019.

Refine (October 04, 2016)

Pencil on paper, the first of the two part drawings, congrats to me, completed.
Photographed outside hence leaves casting shadows visible on white space.

Form (May 24, 2017)

Acid dye on silk, photographed while still in painting process but by then I was starting to see the light, the tunnel exit light.
Pinned together to match the lines at seams.

Epilogue:

There is a bird of prey named “Kite”, they glide up high in circles, scanning the ground for a strolling moron with a fish sandwich (true story). In speed of light the hungry moron would lose her sandwich, snatching so slick it’d leave her with heightened sense of awe memorable for decades to come.

Why steal when all you do is glide in circles?

Their whistles gentle like a songbird, its resonance the awe heightened up high, falling mist on the moron in euphoric micro particles.

Creative Process, November 2016.

A flower petal drawing in progress.

November 13, 2016. While bed-ridden with a common cold, made a decision to drastically cut down my use of mobile devices and a magic called wifi. After all, my eyes are LED sensitive and the whole thing of me is now recoiling from EMF signals. Days of feeling slick and current streaming anywhere is over. Hard to part, surely will miss.

November 14, 2016. Super Moon Monday. A router in hand, called my provider, show me where the switch is, I gotta turn this necessary evil off. The support man was also lightly a comic, was so with zero malice and I noticed, after the call, my eyes were already hurting less*.

November 15, 2016. Woke up fairly fine after four days in futon. Maybe it was my mobile no longer zapping my zzz, or the highly anticipated Moon sending me its ‘super’ through streaks of dark clouds. Either way, it was the kind of night the only thing missing was wolf howls in the distance.

Art works in studio.

The photos are of a dyed silk dress series called “Spider Lily Red”, the 1st (top) and the 2nd piece, both in the making. I harbor an ambition to finish the first dress and open my web shop before 2016 is over, which may come to pass now that my smarty phone is nearly just a telephone.

Time seems to fly faster when I halve my attention. A hint astringent persimmons on the side of wild wolves’ grace alive in digital. Things that precious can get thinned down if consumed half-hearted. Was that an excitement of the world flooding through a device in my palm, or did I begin to let a gadget babysit my existential loneliness. In any case I think I downplayed to myself the physical, attentional, and emotional discomfort. Yes, emotional. It gets kinda hollow when I’m not really there.

So what now, what about your wolves? Well, wolf videos, only on cable-connected computer for now. Minimal mobile usage, most importantly never with my persimmons. As for my existential loneliness, will be kept under my care so I can nurse it in my palms as I would a wounded swallow. I’d like to think I got my TLC intact but sometimes, it has a way of slipping through my fingers.

* A little about the eye hurt I mentioned earlier, as this may not be uncommon: is a sensation of light-pulse drilling my eyes, felt at times more like a shallow headache.
I first took notice of this when I switched to iPhone 4s, my introduction to Retina screen. Within a week I was having a clearly noticeable increase in sensitivity to light, which I call iSquint. (LED sensitivity seems to worsen when coupled with their Retina screen.) Now with 6s, the symptom seems to reduce significantly when turning the airplane mode on.

Thank you for your visit, enjoy the last bit of 2016 and in any event, don’t drive and mobile :)

Lily and her friends – June Studio Report


A flower bouquet in art studio.

A flower bouquet in art studio.

While teaching myself how to use fabric dye, I worked in a office translating mostly medical professionals’ scribbles. I’d carve out five minutes here, ten minutes there, to somehow get my art thing going, until eventually I became the only worker on self-appointed flextime.
On Mondays during lunch I’d walk past several cafes with too many tiny tables, on a cluttered Tokyo street down to a florist, and for a couple hundred yen choose just one flower to place on my desk, a beige-gray rectangle. As an ongoing art education I’d pause between each paragraph for a few moments and closely observe the blossom of the week.

Flower shop flowers always made me a little sad: straight stemmed, sterile, tagged. I eventually parted ways with the scribbles, but what I’ve seen in each flower stayed with me, it’s the remembering of a field somewhere outside their greenhouse, accumulated stories woven into their roots. Years later, they found their way into an enlarged flower petal about to be painted on a dress, on silk with the fabric dye, now my medium of choice.

Artist at work with summer flowers.

A flower bouquet in art studio.

Despite the art interferences, I fulfilled my responsibilities at the scribble’s. Enough so that few years later the same people invited me back, flextime and all, which was very nice of them, but I had already made other plans, to give my all to the art thing.
The choice smart or otherwise? One thing I know, it was the only one, and I blame it on those flowers with stems too straight, and all the moments I shared with them.

A flower bouquet in art studio.

Belles in the bouquets, all picked in the wild, from top, Japanese name in brackets for accuracy sake:
– Bell Flower (Hotaru Bukuro) / Honeysuckle (Suikazura) / Hyacinth Orchid (Siran)
– Hydrangea / Spiderwort (Murasaki Tsuyukusa)
– Dame’s Violet (Hana Daikon) / Yarrow (Nokogiri Sou) / Oxalis (Imo Katabami – the pink in focus. They were “asleep” at the time of photographing, which was immediately after getting picked from under a shrub.) / Cherry Sage (Yakuyou Sarubia – leaves only) / Fennel (leaves)
– Polygonum (Hime Tsurusoba) / Coral Flower (Haze Ran) / Herb Robert (Hime Fuuro)
– Adenophora Gaudi Violet (Sobana) / Gooseneck Loosestrife (Tora no o) / Prunella Vulgaris (Utsubogusa) / Gymnaster Savatieri (Miyako Wasure) / Spiderwort

In blurry background is the various stages of the dress series “Spider Lily Red” in the making in chronological/ascending order, with photo copies of 2 large pencil drawings of a spider lily petal pinned on the wall.
Also refer to my previous posts for the actual size of the petal, and the daring demeanor of each petal and my earlier attempts at grasping some of it upon fibre.