Monday, October 17, 2011

Inktober is here again.

It's the month that comes only once a year, and by the decree set forth by Jake Parker (king and ruler over all that is Inktober), I've cracked open a much-neglected sketchbook and put INK to paper. Anything goes. Here's a small dent...

Ink forces you to commit in ways unlike other mediums. Something is black, or it isn't. And in a sketchbook, there is no turning back. Take these next two pages:

There are plenty of things I don't like about either of them, but there they are (numerous decisions I want to take back in plain sight). But there's no starting over on paper. Computers let you get rid of all those marks you don't like, instead of building on what you have. It's a very different way of making a drawing. And as much as I'd like to be able to go in and redo certain marks and strokes, I like that I can't.

If Adobe is listening, I would highly value the ability to password-lock the UNDO feature (thereby disabling COMMAND-Z). Set it on a timer, or something. (THE HORROR!!)

Trust me—it wouldn't be such a bad thing. The reason why you NEED undo is because the computer doesn't always get it right; it doesn't always translate your true intent. When you make a mistake on paper, it happens at your control at the tip of your brush or pen. The computer attempts to process your input, and there's a gap that exists between your brain and the screen (especially if you're still on an tablet, like me). One day that barrier will no longer exist, and then we'll remember the benefit of making a line and leaving it.

If you're traditional when it comes to inking, you have all sorts of methods in place for corrections (even if they're digital solutions), but I bet you're much more comfortable with your mark-making. If you're all digital, I challenge you to work with ink. Even if just for the next couple weeks. It's a good exercise to shut off the editing part of your brain—to just keep making marks until you're done. And then you move on to the next thing.

(don't ask.)

1 comment:

brotherother said...

really enjoyed reading this--very informative. It's funny because of the fact that I work almost exclusively with ink, beginning with it frequently, and it's gotten to the point that I forget the wonder of drafts with pencils and, much like "undo", the eraser.