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the various and sundry creations of sylvus tarn
Inktober, Day 1:
mixed media fish

So my glass daughter Frances was kind enough to give me a set of prompts for Inktober, which is the visual artist's equivalent of Nanowrimo, I guess:)

pen and ink, coloured markers, coloured pencil, watercolours, stickers and found papers adhered on a 2019 Japanese appointment diary, 8.25x5.5"; photographed panasonic lumix LX100, unified transform, crop and levels tools applied.

Day one was fish, and Frances did an absurdly beautiful Magrittesque self-portrait; I merely decided to do a goldfish, because they're pretty (the younger cohort of my art group is not nearly so bound by this tendency, good on them) and orange, which allowed me to incorporate the orange sticker. —A couple of weeks later, I would do my first in-person shopping at REI, using that card, because I needed to replace lost bike gloves and worn-out winter trail shoes.

Really good artists manage to imbue all sorts of hidden meaning into their collages, but honesty compels me to admit that I like sorting these things out by colour, if possible. The ‘your password’ paper, which I'd found ...last year? was obviously more yellow than orange, but I'd been wanting to incorporate it forever, so I mashed it in. I do mostly recognize (in the limited environment of my duolingo lessons) the kanji for fish, sakana. I wish I'd made it bigger, but I've basically made no progress on Japanese calligraphy this summer—one of the many projects stalled out for which I'm blaming COVID.

The seahorse (which is a fish) was brought to mind by an old, lost, scrimshaw; the curling lines around the goldfish, by Asian conventions for depicting water (not at all well reproduced.) That led to something I could actually do, the flowers. Despite the slightly melancholy notes in the work, I enjoyed making it—I was arting with Fran, and I think possibly f2tE as well, a gathering to be savoured and treasured, as it indeed it was.

And of the three or four Inktober drawings I've attempted so far, this mixed media one is by far my favourite.