This image featuring Leonardo’s “Mona Lisa” with Vincent Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” is shown at its peak. These images drawn in the dust are obviously quite impermanent. One of the cool things about them is how they change over time. More dust accumulates as the car is driven down the road. Early morning dew streaks and dots the image, creating a patina. A light shower creates a deeper patina…
Here’s a detail from the previous image. You can see a little streaking from early morning dew. This image was worked on in three sessions, with more dust accumulating between sessions. That’s when the drawings really seem to take on life, with a much greater range of values.
And now for something totally different. This guy just sorta appeared, I guess. The dust wasn’t very thick, but enough to do a drawing. The light spots and specks are places where tree sap fell and dust stuck to it.
Saw Uncle Albert on the cover of a magazine and thought he might appreciate the relativity of dirty car art…
My cat Squeek wanted to express himself on Albert’s forehead. I had walked out one morning to finish this piece, and found Squeek had beat me to it. Now, if a cat can do it, what are you waiting for? Dust art is for everyone.
A friend confided to me that this is his least favorite of my dust drawings to date. For a cartoony thing, there’s a lot of unhappiness, here. This is one of the very first dust drawings where I explored the use of a fan brush to get intermediate tones. Mostly finger and fingernail for the linework. I’d better say right here that my lovely wife, Robin, is not a nag. Never. Really.
Detail of “The Nag.” You can really see the texture of the dust. It’s rarely an even coating, and tree sap and dew and wind and mist and all sorts of things will give it a great patina. You can also see how I’ve worked back into the drawing, after the original accumulated more dust. This really helps build the range of values.
From inside the car. With a light background, the image looks like a negative, but here the background was dark and the sun was shining full onto the rear window. Kinda like being at the movies. Well, a boring one, anyway.
Why the hell not? Kinky’s our man for Texas Governor. Let’s get Kinky in Austin!
Step two, I lay out the drawing. I’m using a rubber ‘paint shaper’ tool. I’m looking at a copy of C.M. Coolidge’s ‘A Friend In Need,’ his great illustration, c. 1870, that inspired many subsequent poker playing dog paintings.
Adding the shading. The lighter tones are hard to achieve, since even the lightest stroke with the brush takes most of the dust off. Later, when more dust has built up, what was once very dark, will be a lighter “gray” shade. I mostly use a fan brush, and sometimes camelhair watercolor brushes, and bristle brushes for effect.
COPYRIGHT: ©2006 Scott Wade
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