anonyrrie: Illustration Friday - Surprise

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Illustration Friday - Surprise

Apparently with no surprise
To any happy Flower
The Frost beheads it at its play—
In accidental power—

The blonde Assassin passes on—
The Sun proceeds unmoved
To measure off another Day
For an Approving God.

Emily Dickinson (1830–1886)

drawing/collage - metallic markers and micron pen on white and black bristol


Blogger Catnapping said...

red is my favorite colour, so i'm predisposed to like this illustration anyway...

but truly, your line work is superb. i love the gold detail in her hair, and the blush of her cheeks. brava.

2:04 PM  
Blogger Teri C said...

Your detail and design is just beautiful!

2:10 PM  
Blogger Mick said...

WOW! Carla, this method of working on dark paper seems to suit you perfectly. This piece jumps straight to the top of my favorites list among your illustrations. The Emily Dickinson poem is icing on the cake...I love this.

2:12 PM  
Blogger Virginia Valle said...

Ohhh really beautiful posting and the details is amazing!!!Congrats Carla :)

Ps is only a visit ;D

2:23 PM  
Blogger St John Street said...

Your lady designs are just beautiful I especially like the long necked one your art is hot

2:24 PM  
Blogger carla said...

Thank you all, very much:>>>> This was an experiment for me and I must say I had such fun with those shiny markers! The parts that look red are actually metallic copper - it really has a lot of shine "in person."

2:28 PM  
Blogger Tiffy said...

I like metallic pens and markers too! This is very expressive, emotional, and beautiful.

3:10 PM  
Blogger Alexa Brett said...

Wow, Carla! You illo is so beautiful! The communication between the woman and the flower is intense... You used the perfect materials. I am speechless! ;-)

3:15 PM  
Blogger Twisselman said...

Wow. Very nice. I like the colors, the borders and patterns. Nice interpretation of Ms. Dickinson's poem.

3:27 PM  
Blogger The Tart said...

The surprise here... is that this is so dark!

Nice to see the portrait combined with our trusty friend Mr. Sun. What do you see in that flower? Yourself? Maybe not...and that is really the surprise.

As always, very lovely!

The Tart

3:33 PM  
Blogger modroom said...

Your work is kind of archaic and funky, and it's like listening to favourite music.

3:37 PM  
Blogger rubio2d said...

lovely flowered frame...Great work with it. Fantastic sun in the background too.And it's non digital..fantastic real-life illo!

3:56 PM  
Blogger LudaChristian said...

great style again.... nicely done!

3:57 PM  
Blogger cream said...

Carla, I love your detail. It is an amazingly gentle style that's so soothing!
Emily would be proud to see her poem illustrated in this fashion!

4:28 PM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

Think the dark paper also suits your style! Paricularly like the red touches and the centerpiece flower :)

6:15 PM  
Blogger scott said...

I don't get the part about black and white bristol.
Is there a cut out?
isn't bristol, like thick?
this goes to my second favourite carla, behind your work of last week. the copper must be a nice thing to see, in the flesh , as it were.
I like to think that my painting of last week made you want to pull out the black card. ;)
nice quickie carla.
love scott

6:29 PM  
Blogger ValGalArt said...

carla, beautiful and unique! I hope you don't mind my saying when I stand back it looks like the most beautiful scarf! Or wall hanging made from fabric! love this!!! p.s. as soon as the young man that helps me fix my blog is free from finals I am adding you to my favourites.

6:35 PM  
Blogger gudbrandsdottir said...

You have done it again, great details, and its nice to see all the shiny colours, silver, gold and copper...

6:40 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

hmmm... I just read today on Writer's Almanac that this is E. Dickinson's birthday! what timing!

6:50 PM  
Blogger andrea said...

I love white and metallic on black ... did you notice? :) The decorative quality of your work really shines in this medium. I hope you do another one again soon. (And I also love that it's straight illustration this time with no Photoshop ... am I correct?)

7:03 PM  
Blogger carla said...

Tiffy & gudbransdottir- thanks! I had so much fun playing with these markers. I'd like to find some with a very super fine point, though.

Alexa & Jody - The woman who's communicating with the flower is the Frost, aka the Blonde Assassin, and her intense communication is really her very impassive decision to "behead" the flower...tough job, but someone's got to do it.

Twissleman, cream & jonesy - I really love Emily Dickinson. I find her musings on life, death, and God very intriguing and often very much to the point despite her somewhat enigmatic diction. I didn't know today is her birthday! That's really cool:>

modrom - Thank you - I like archaic and funky:>>

rubio - yes, this one is all drawing. I just left it as it was.

Thanks, christian!

Val, it does look like a scarf! I think the uneven border adds to that impression.

Thanks, anonymous...I thought it might be fun to explore my "dark side" after I saw your toxic lady:>

Scott, the woman & flower and the sun were done on white bristol. I cut them out and glued them to the black bristol. It is pretty heavy, but not too heavy to cut.

Andrea, your beautiful drawings inspired me to try light on dark. Are your pens also metallic? It's so hard to tell once the drawing is scanned because it seems that just the color comes through. And yes, this is just a straight illustration without photoshop. I usually add some photoshop when I don't have the time to do a background (because the other stuff seems to take forever and I'll be flogged if I spend an entire weekend drawing), but this one didn't need a background. I am definitely going to play around more with thistechnique. I can see how it lends itself to the kind of patterning you do. I would like to find some ultra fine markers so I can do some of the more intricate designs that I like to do in black on white.

7:23 PM  
Blogger Cindy said...

The metallic on black looks really cool. Your drawing is earthy and other-worldly at the same time.

Thanks for commenting on my blog. Yes, my banner is new for the holidays. Thanks for noticing.

7:36 PM  
Blogger merlinprincesse said...

Simply love it Carla! And those small drawings around! Real nice!

7:41 PM  
Blogger Amy Zaleski said...

You really have achieved a fabric texture here, if you were striving for that or not. Ms. Dickinson would be proud. :-)

7:41 PM  
Blogger m.b said...

Beautiful! Very intuitive and emotional. You have such a unique approach - always a delight see see your posts... every week is a pleasant surprise!

8:07 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

Lovely work and selection of poetry...ah, Winter does come upon us, does it not?

9:33 PM  
Blogger constanthing said...

Very strong contrasts, the borders remind me of henna designs, very nice.

10:21 PM  
Blogger Natura said...

Nice composition, lovely color combination! :)

10:43 PM  
Blogger Rick Lovell said...

Thanks for the wonderful comments on my entry. You are always too kind. This, as usual, is a beautiful interpretation of the theme. In these days of morning frost, I see the blonde Assassin weilding her icy sword, beheading the flowers at her whim. The question is, who will take the most... the Frost, or the displaced deer who have their dark eyes on my hostas, pansies and everything else in my once lush garden?

11:58 PM  
Blogger Joe said...

Good to see you expermenting girl. Love it!

12:23 AM  
Blogger Alina Chau said...

beautifully design illustration!! I love the black BG, and the composition is very elegant!

2:01 AM  
Blogger Caroline said...

Fabulous new direction Carla! I love the contrast with the black. It looks like you had fun playing with the metallics here.

You have personified frost in a more feminine form too - that's a great surprise too.

8:43 AM  
Blogger Leezy said...

A lovely poem, Carla.
I really enjoyed the line work in this piece. And how you have given the illustration a 'reverse' effect. A refreshing approach to the subject. I especially like the focal flower. It has a similar feel to some of William Morris's work but different. More edgy.

9:51 AM  
Blogger Lily and Lucy White said...

Away with the sweetness and light! This is chilling, with all the poetic reference, and what I see is the lovely and approving Goddess, who could also be the blond assassin, who also has no clue of her power at play! I found smiling sun little creepy… At the first look – this could be just another very happy picture, until you look some more. Lily.

1:16 PM  
Blogger Tony Sarrecchia said...

Beautiful design. I am always in awe of the amount of detial you put into your pieces. Just wonderful.

4:31 PM  
Blogger Bob said...

Just happened to be passing thru and saw your illustration - just had a to leave a comment to say how much I like your it, will be checking out your other stuff too!

5:48 PM  
Blogger Knitting Painter Woman said...

Thanks for bringing another of Ms. Dickinson's poems to my attention. In light of current ideological/religious wars, I was surprised myself that Blonde assassins were met with God's approval! Or was it the Sun's stalwart progress that was approved? :-)
Nice slant take on the topic.

8:26 PM  
Blogger carla said...

Thank you, all:> With regard to the poem, Emily Dickinson is commenting on the impassive quality nature has while associating its power ultimately with God. She acknowledges the brutality of nature by calling the frost an "assassin" that "beheads" the "happy flower" while it is at play. Yet the power of nature is "accidental," suggesting that once created by God, it simply functions with neither malelvolent intention nor emotion. This indifference is reinforced by the idea that the sun "proceeds unmoved." By referring to God as "approving," she suggests that the creator has designed nature to work this way, and perhaps suggests that the workings of nature and of God are not within our ability to really understand in terms of our human perspective and emotions.

8:47 PM  
Blogger melba said...

I love, love, love Emily Dickinson! I love this illustration too especially all the detail against the black.

9:25 PM  
Blogger Shano said...

Your work is so ethereal. I am so impressed. I would have your work hanging in my house. Totally my style. Keep up the beautiful work.

9:52 PM  
Blogger Joy Eliz said...

This is beautiful. It looks very vintage to me. I especially like the contrast.
PS. Thanks for your comment on my cat. Funny thing...I kinda had myself in mind when I drew it - (it's a birthday thing.)

10:54 PM  
Blogger Christine Lim Simpson said...

Awesome illo Carla! It looks like embroidery.

By the way, I am tagging you to do a Childhood Food Meme if you don't mind. Take your time. :)

2:58 AM  
Blogger isay said...

it can pass as a big capet wall design. i thought so because of the texture and the outline design. i am so amaze with the details.... and it goes well with Emily Dickinson's peom. Beautiful carla!

by the way, i am sick but recovering today and feeling better.thanks...........

3:40 AM  
Anonymous aynaku said...

ciao carla, thanks for your comment about "max"...a peculiar man indeed,,,the sun in your illo is really lovely...

4:42 AM  
Blogger Anthony Woodward said...

ooohhh frosty! how cold is it in your parts now?

7:47 AM  
Blogger Holly said...

Great idea with marker. It really makes this piece stand out. Very sharp. Cheers!

8:31 AM  
Blogger Virginia Valle said...

Carla I wish a beautifullllllllllll Christmas and Happy New year ;) Im leaving to visit to my family, see you in 2006 ;)

9:30 AM  
Blogger openroundtop said...

thanks, i tried to add some variation to my site this week. it can be fun steering away from what you usually do. i really like the line detail in your piece this week, and the high contrast between the face and the background really helps it to pop out, nice work!

12:11 PM  
Blogger Wilnara said...

Carla another beautiful piece! The texture reminds me of those velvet paintings with stiching used to create the images. I love the contrast and how sensual she is.

10:11 PM  
Blogger noctrnl said...

Great line work. Expressive enough to be templates for either stained-glass or as a starting point for chiaroscuro study in engraveings.

4:02 AM  
Blogger Isa said...

So misterious...incredible!
Happy christmas!!

5:38 AM  
Blogger Poboi said...

Wow. Very intresting piece. Is the "surprise" the moment of realization that we are small in the presence of God?

6:46 AM  
Blogger Rachelle said...

The details in the image are beautiful Carla. I love the white lines against the black background.

9:58 AM  
Blogger steve said...

Beautiful work Carla! It's good to see you're doing art for yourself again (even as an art teacher I find it difficult to make time for art making). This blogging thing can actually be incredibly inspiring too. Keep up the great work!

11:54 AM  
Blogger floots said...

absolutely love your illustrations - and you have chosen some of my favourite words too

thank you

1:55 PM  
Blogger Aravis said...

I'm with floots; I love your illustrations. I think my favorite parts of this are the sun and the flower border. I also really like your choice of the black background for this one. It has a sort of slavic feel all around to me, but I think it's largely due to the border and bg. Wonderful!

3:42 PM  
Blogger Toni said...

Carla, beautiful piece on black! Love Emily Dickinson.
I see from your comment responces you liked working on black. Isn't it great! What kind of paper did you use?
If you have not tried it yet, try Fabriano Ingres black or Arches Cover black. wonderful to work on.

Love your sun faces and the illo suits the poem just right.

10:15 PM  
Blogger violetismycolor said...

very the poem to go with the illo...did the illo or the poem come first?

1:11 AM  
Blogger String said...

So far this illo is my favorite! I love this one.

3:05 AM  
Blogger Jeope said...

Nice, Carla.

And hey: thanks for the link/shout-out last week. With your army of friends here, I had a fair number of people come visit because of it.

Take care!

10:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Carla, this is to me, very mystic. Although the image appears to be the sun, but it also seems like the moon against the black background. All these flowers are pointing towards her, and the way her hair is curving in back towards the earth/flowers makes this composition work really well. It's like embroideries on velvet. It's more than just beautiful. I want to adorn it with jewels and precious pearls and gold thread. We should work together!

12:27 PM  
Blogger fortwertz said...

Excellent piece. The style looks almost embroided! Very cool stuff.

12:49 PM  
Blogger KaRLa said...

Really nice , well done

2:45 PM  
Blogger coffee81 said...

Your illustration is good and with the little description or quote or unique captions taken from any book, it makes it more interesting.

8:48 PM  
Blogger The Sensualist said...

Yay Carla- the guardian angel of Illustration Friday!
Go on with your bad nouveau-Aubrey-Beardsley self! You know how I love your hand-drawn illustrations.

Thanks also for noticing my absence. I took a hiatus, but now I am back. I was crafting (knitting mainly) a bit too much to draw. Now I'll have to remember how!

9:54 PM  
Anonymous James said...

Love the jewel-like feeling of this piece. Perfect reflection of the Dickinson poem.

10:30 PM  
Blogger chan wah said...

Very detailed and beautiful design, the metallic markers go well with the black background, very creative.

12:00 AM  
Blogger Urban Convert said...

Hi Carla. This is is very much you and yet also very different. You seem to have the ability to express a wide range of emotiona without moving far from what looks to be your signature style (though not having seen a lot of your art, I don't want to assume). Another intriging, beautiful piece.

9:47 AM  
Anonymous hartini said...

This is just so beautiful! I love the sun, the lady and the flower border. The flowers almost remind me of batik printing.

10:45 AM  
Blogger frank h said...

WOW! This work is really beautiful
The black background is essential to give more importance to shapes and details of the front
The general balance is perfect (Can you see the big X that is the master geometrical pattern?)
Very, very nice to my eyes.

10:45 AM  
Blogger Jaimie said...

I love your intricate and delicate style.
This almost looks like embroidery.

11:16 AM  
Blogger Karen said...

Beautiful work! Looks like a tapestry.

2:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beautiful and elegant. I like that you have used a black background.

5:30 PM  
Blogger kikazinha said...

This one suits you perfectly, it is my favourite from all I have seen since I started do fly on your blog.
And it is a very soft and exquisite idea for surprise.Beautiful poem...a bit sad but about the unchangeable things which actually make life.

7:26 PM  
Blogger ValGalArt said...

Hi carla! Would you be available to be tagged and talk about your art, the time it takes and the process? please email me when you have a moment. Thanks,

7:26 PM  
Blogger The Whippy Curly Tails said...

Very mysterious....nice.

Can't wait for your next work.

9:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

she's pretty... reminds me of mommy's story last night before i went to sleep. a beautiful lady in a wonderful garden where a bad snake gave her a bad fruit that made her bad... ..

2:24 AM  
Anonymous irvine said...

oops. sorry i forgot my link above. ^

2:25 AM  
Blogger Alexa Brett said...


Thank you for your kind words on my entry for Illustration Friday for IMAGINE. I can't wait to see your entry...I love your work! :-)

7:50 PM  
Blogger Toyebot said...

Love the detail in the lines. Always so much strength behind it! cheers, thx for dropping by:)

2:28 AM  
Blogger The Crafty-Girl™ said...

I didn't get a chance to look around much last I missed this one! It is just magical; has an art deco feel to it; love the pairing with the Dickinson poem.

3:41 PM  
Blogger LDahl said...

Every time I see this I just blank out and look... wow...
It is so special(you don't need me to tell you that). The three faces reflecting each other each a sun. The work is a beauty!!

10:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

this turned out very nice. it looks different from a lot of your other works, but the style change was very successful. congrats

7:40 PM  
Anonymous Paula said...

I havn't had much time to go around this week, but glad I came here and enjoyed both the beautiful illustrations and Dickinson!!! my favoreite poetess.

12:12 PM  

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