Monday, June 15, 2009

LinkUp and on the bike over to the studio, blah blah blah. Hauled the bike up six flights of stairs because I was going into the city later to meet Patricia to get a quick dinner and see a movie at IFC. Kind of finished one drawing and started (and maybe completed) another one. I guess I don't have much in mind for these drawings. Actually, I do . . . I'd like to actually illustrate a story--one with an actual plot and semi-discernable narrative arc instead of just kind of cramming onto the paper whatever images come to mind. But I don't really know where to begin. Do I write it out first? Instinct tells me I should just draw and keep drawing and let the story come out that way but things always get so jumbled and stream-of-consciousness that way. I want to make something very specific, very literal.

Anyway. Not that pleased with either drawing thought I guess I like the one with the guy riding away from the viewer better than the other. I've always taken some pride in my ability to draw objects purely from my imagination--I don't mean creating fantastic images so much at getting the physical sense of an object and then rotating it in my head and drawing it from whatever angle is needed. I'm decent at that with figures . . . but bikes? I need photo references.

Teddy came in around four and we listened to some music--Fleet Foxes, Band of Horses (animal-name bands which, as a genre, I normally try to avoid)--and we had a few Tecates. I headed into the city around 6:30, exited at W. 4th and purchased tickets for I Bring What I Love--a documentary about Youssour N'Dour--then met Patricia at Pepe Rosso To Go for a quick dinner. (Her with the chicken penne sans chicken and me with the brescola panini with goat cheese and truffle oil. Delicious food but terrible seating arrangements.) The movie--about N'Dour (ostensibly a pop singer) releasing an album, Egypt, dedicated to the glories of Sufi Islam--was okay but kind of flabby. The film could be at least 30 minutes shorter without loss in quality and narrative. The album supposedly provoked all kinds of discord and upset amongst devout Muslims in Senegal . . . but this was only shown through a series of newspaper quotes highlighted on the screen. Another problem was the quality of the performance footage--it was choppy and always seemed to focus on the introductory material of the song. Once the song hit its peak, the director seemed to always cut away to quieter interview material. It was difficult to get the sense of what an entire N'Dour performance was like. The climax of the film was apparently N'Dour winning a Grammy for the album . . . but I guess my cynicism regarding the quality of previous Grammy winners (Wilson Phillips, Milli Vanilli, Jewel, etc.) deflated the importance of that award. However, the film had a lot of warm, endearing footage of Youssour interacting with friends and family. So I enjoyed that I guess. Meh.

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