Saturday, August 06, 2005

Illustration Friday - EMPTY

I long for emptiness, I aspire to beautiful minimalism. However I'm like the old woman who lived in a shoe - too many children, not enough space and every one of us untidy and hoarders to boot. In my cluttered, crowded house I do however have one small wall in the office which is painted white and which I won't let anyone use to hang cupboards, pictures, shelves or anything else. A suggestion of another life. Deep down though I know that the cool, uncluttered, minimalist lifestyle I aspire to could probably only come at the price of an empty life.


Anonymous Mark said...

We all have those fantasies of a life "less-cluttered." Less responsibilities...less to do...less junk...fewer obligations. But your conclusion is sound...the price would be an empty life.

Sometimes, when I can't find time to draw I wish for simpler times...but then I remember how unhappy I was in simpler times. And I drew even less then!

Mark Stinson

8/07/2005 10:21 AM  
Blogger isay said...

when i was growing up i always dream the same thing because i come from a big family and when i finally had the chance(really having those four white walls....), that i also began to question myself about a lot of things and started to miss my siblings and nieces and nephews and how much they mean to me.

by the way julie, i am away from the phils for a long time now.

8/07/2005 11:04 AM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

This is a wonderful drawing - it makes me laugh. Can't tell you how many times I have said "When the kids move out and we retire". I have dreams of white walls and not even a chair or a vase :)

8/07/2005 11:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is the grass greener on the other side? Guess we'll only ever find out once we get there - the key I suppose is to prepare ourselves in case it isn't. By the way, clutter isn't such bad thing - beats the life out of clinically clean. A nice thought provoking piece.


8/07/2005 11:37 AM  
Blogger JacqueLynn said...

Oh my GOSH!!! You absolutely hit a feeling that I have had so many times, and you hit it perfectly. That missing heart, that the dream isn't what we really want, that it costs too much, but still we think about it. You took this observation and illustrated it perfectly. I knew immediatly what the meaning was, the loose style and change of colors works perfectly. This is an amazing illustration! A question, Pen and watercolor? or Digital? just wondering. It is a great illustration! Very Best Regards, Jacque

8/07/2005 12:31 PM  
Blogger Mustashrik said...

Hey there,

Love the way you have captured your own feelings in this weeks topic, a very creative way to express your thoughts, kudos to you!


8/07/2005 4:41 PM  
Blogger bobi said...

oh oh good good good !!

8/07/2005 6:13 PM  
Blogger carla said...

What a great contrast between the reality and the fantasy...the color vs. greys, the loose vibrating lines vs. the uninterrupted lines. It conveys the concept very well. I also enjoyed reading your explanation. I am sure it resonates with amny people! Great illustration!

8/07/2005 6:58 PM  
Anonymous Karen Winters said...

Full and cluttered is definitely better than emptied, and you certainly illustrated the topic very well. My aunt won a scholarship to art school, but ended up marrying man who was so OCD he would never let her put a single nail an any wall to hang any painting. A hole in the wall would mean it would have to be plastered and repainted one day. She never painted or drew again. And the walls were pristine when she moved out. Full is better. No doubt about it.

8/07/2005 11:38 PM  
Blogger Michelle said...

Oh how I can relate to that! Great illustration.

8/08/2005 2:26 AM  
Blogger Rowantree said...

I like contrast between colorful reality and clear colors feelings. Nice job !!

8/08/2005 1:46 PM  
Anonymous lorigrace said...

What an incredible illustration!!!

8/08/2005 2:27 PM  
Blogger koukla said...

I can totally relate to what you mean. I too want to have a perfectly simple and minimalist house instead of the normal clutter. I think I have come to some sort of a happy medium. Instead of getting rid of everything, I have come up with better way to store things.

8/09/2005 3:52 PM  
Blogger vfm4 said...

i love this drawing, the contrast between dream and reality.... and knowing that in a few years time it will be the other way round and she'll be dreaming of how it used to be... :-)

8/10/2005 11:26 AM  
Blogger Dreamjar said...

This is lovely! I can't help but laugh at the small chair in her bubble, with room for only her and nobody else to sit...

8/11/2005 12:22 PM  
Blogger Julie Oakley said...

Thank you for all your comments. I posted this just before going away for a few days which is why I've taken so long to respond.

As soon as I got back I trawled through all the IF 'empty' submissions. As usual there were so many wonderful illustrations but as a counterpoint to this illustration I was particularly moved by the personal illustrations that a few people produced either on the topic of infertility or on the 'empty nest' syndrome.

8/12/2005 9:02 PM  
Blogger carla said...

Hi Julie,
Thanks for reading my stories and leaving a comment! It really made my day :> I don't want to reveal the correct answer on my blog on the off chance that a few of the "lurkers" might actually make their guesses. I'll give you an abbreviated version of the explanation I gave onclejohann.
Actually, all three stories depict the truth, but one takes it beyond the truth and into the fulfillment of a fantasy. You were correct; it is the circus story that never happened. Oh, I did have the parrot and I did have the plan, but I didn't have the guts. As a child, I was a huge fan of Enid Blyton's adventure series, and there was a boy (I think his name was Jack) who had a parrot. For some reason, they were selling fake parrots in the produce department at my local grocery store...who knows why...and as soon as I saw it, I knew I had to have it! I wanted to be like Jack and his other three friends who, in one of the books, ran off and joined the circus. The part about the elephant is actually based on my son's ride around the ring on the back of a huge old pachyderm many, many years later. When I asked him how he liked the ride, his response was something like, "It was itchy and a guy had to keep shoveling up the elephant's poop."

By the way, I looked some more through your blog...your work is just wonderful! I wanted to eat the green beans!


8/12/2005 11:58 PM  
Blogger carla said...'s seaweed...I was wondering why the beans had little tendrils...

8/13/2005 12:13 AM  
Blogger bobi said...

Hello, haow do you do ??

8/13/2005 1:27 AM  
Blogger Julie Oakley said...

Carla - thanks for letting me in on the story. Bobi, if you're asking the technique on this one - it was just a very rough sketch which I then drew over in pen. I scanned the pen drawing and then added all the colour in photoshop.

8/14/2005 12:26 PM  
Blogger Julie said...

Julie, I can completely relate with this feeling. This illustration is perfect. Wonderful work. I love it.

8/15/2005 3:09 AM  
Blogger Julie said...

How long do you think this took you? Did you draw it on site or from a photo?

8/15/2005 3:22 AM  
Blogger Julie Oakley said...

Thanks for the compliment Julie. I don't know whether you meant that 2nd comment to apply to this picture - sounds more like a comment about a landscape. However If you did, I drew it from imagination although our sitting room looks remarkably like this picture. I knew I wouldn't have a lot of time to get it done but as usual (like most of my pictures) it took a lot longer than it looks because I'm an incessant tweaker. The black bit probably took about an hour and a half and adding the colour another hour or so.

8/15/2005 10:30 AM  
Blogger diosaperdida said...

Wonderful illustration and interpretation. I on the other hand would die if a white EMPTY white walls were to somehow wonder into my house. ( My family room walls are red, blue and on one side, yellow on the other, red on the ends....the curtains are all those colors and striped.)
None-the-less...I wish you a white room, with white lillies, and a white marble heart sculpture on the gleaming silver mantle...just keep a fire going under that mantal. ;)

8/18/2005 9:05 AM  

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