Aleppo

Aleppo. Micron 01 pen on Strathmore 300 Series Bristol paper. 14

Aleppo. Micron 01 pen on Strathmore 300 Series Bristol paper. 14″ x 14″

I began this piece shortly before Aleppo was surrounded by government forces in the Syrian civil war, and it quickly became obvious that raising awareness of the brutality of the conflict’s impact on non-combatants would be a worthwhile subject. I used a still from a video to draw one of the many children who’ve been covered in dirt and blood by the barrel bombs and relentless pounding by Russian jets. Their ashen, blank expressions are truly heartbreaking.

From a purely artistic perspective, I’m very happy with the overwhelming majority of this one. The child and the cockpit came out extremely well, and the abstract sections are almost uniformly gratifying to me in their prescision and depth. There are a couple of weak spots I’d do over if I could, notably the salamander and the forest giant, but overall I’d say this is one of my best works so far. I feel like I’m making progress improving my attention to detail, and it’s starting to pay off in the clarity and ‘pop’ of the final product.  

Blind Eyed Turned

 

Blind Eye Turned. Micron pens on Strathmore 300 Series Bristol paper. 12

Blind Eye Turned. Micron pens on Strathmore 300 Series Bristol paper. 12″x12″

This was the first piece I completed after a seven-week hiatus in which I was coaching a couple of youth soccer teams. (It’s hard to find the time to do art properly when you’re working on it outside of a full-time job and running practices four nights a week.)
I’m still undecided how to feel about this one. I had some unusual technical problems with my pens, which may have to do with the change in humidity as winter comes on, and that affected the quality of the larger dark areas. There are also a few places where the work didn’t come out quite as well as it usually does. However, I’m pleased with the overall effect. The content references the horrendous suffering of the people fleeing Syria, and of the non-European areas of the world largely ignoring the problem – The U.S., for example, has taken in all of around 1,700 people so far.