Friday, October 19, 2007

bohemian night

Walking at night is lovely in silverlake, I think i could walk forever along the dark curvy roads that seemingly go nowhere. this time of year there aren't as many flowers blooming, that I missed. their scent is stronger at night and reminds me of northern Israel where there is a city I visited where the air is filled with the aroma of every flower possible and I've tried to figure out what flowers they were ever since. And I swear there are the same flowers here in LA.... But tonight the aroma was more of mulch and dirt which is pleasant in a different way. And the hills were very quiet, just the hum of traffic in the distance. I don't like to listen to music when I walk. Natural sounds are even better... the brief bits of conversation, TV, music. The constant rhythm of my feet. I steal glimpses into lit windows that feel like frames of pictures. I see vases, couches, chandeliers, framed art, books. I wonder what they read, who they are, what they do, where they go. Everything looks charming in a window, it's like a miniature stage with much quieter drama. Sometimes there are no characters at all. The roads are very narrow with little lighting and steep inclines. The homes are build into the hills and overgrown plants in a haphazard terraced manner. Some of the homes look like the big earthquake has already hit. They have crooked doors and sagging beams and the paint falls off like paper. There are vines every where, and hidden staircases and lamps meekly radiating yellow light. There are no straight lines or order, and it's almost as if you can see all the changes and incremental movement of the landscape from decades layered on top of each other like multiple exposures.

My walk ended at spaceland-- which was more a reason to walk through the hills at night than a destination. I have returned to sketching musicians and crowds. It seemed like I needed to be a bit bohemian and return to living fluidly without structure or discipline. When I draw from people (especially in a public place) there is no control. People move, stand still, turn around, block your view-- whatever is unexpected. It's nice to sketch them because I can't get too precious about anything. I see a nice moment... such as a person whispering in another's ear, a couple embracing, a person walking through my view... and it's gone. I draw what I can. Sometimes it's a figure, somtimes it's just an elbow or outline or nose. I layer the drawings on top of each other and they form a sort of messy shape of gestures. Again, it's kind of like multiple exposures. Little is recognizable, I capture the energy of a person or people moving by and it's gone. And then among all this I like to put the sketchpad down and join the picture because behind all of this is the music which always put's me in a transcendent mood and makes me skip home giddy and glowing.

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