Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Getting Some Sun

Original charcoal/conte crayon drawing on toned paper, approx. 11.5" x 8.5", unframed and unmatted.
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This drawing was of a woman that I saw sitting in the sun with a cup of tea while a friend and I visited TongLi, a water town near Suzhou. I asked my friend to ask her if it was ok if I took her photo. She did not reply and just stared and squinted at me. Foreigners are such an oddity to some Chinese. I took her photo as it was a wonderfully sunny day that day. Most days it is overcast and misty or smoky.

In the corner of the drawing above my signature is my one of my chop marks. While in China I had various folks actually make me a few. To the Chinese a chop is as valid and binding as a signature done by hand. An individual may have many different chops and they can be used for various purposes. This chop is one of my favorites as it was done by an artist who studied for many years. When I met him we could not verbally communicate, but as I found out many Chinese know how to read English. I would write things down and he would reply or we did communicate with body language. This chop is done on a beautiful carved stone with some red in the stone (more valuable). The artist also wrote an inscription along side the chop. This chop wasn't one of those ones that a person can find at the tourist shops. I watched him carve it and try it out. I now can use my chops on drawings as a way of signing my name. Enjoy!

I am still debating whether I should start another blog just for drawings....time will tell.

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