Post #10 Visual/Tactile/visual/tactile
Remembering precisely can still be hard. Time is difficult to date. If I hadn’t lost so many journals, I might be able to discover a starting date when I began to keep my journals as sketches and drawings instead of words. I used numbers to date each entry and I used words to give the barest of context. And at some point, the food journals I was encouraged to use for diabetes management were illustrated as well. The shows I watched inspired new ideas and succeeding ideas were documented in pictures.
After learning that pastry chef Christina Tosi found fame in her re-working a traditional dish with an unconventional throwback to childhood flavors. I illustrated all the various “types/flavors” of bread pudding and panna cotta riffs, and dessert for breakfast alterations I imagined. A new-to-me habit emerged that caused me to work further on editing, and concisely communicating, and zeroing in on what I wanted to express. Artistic endeavors, regardless of form (writing or visual art) push the practitioner to hone those skills through thought and work.
I am no artist. I loved art class in school and my formal training only consisted of years at summer art camps at the Cleveland Museum of Art. I did take one summer course in Portraiture at the Cleveland Institute of Art in middle school where the instructor commented I was too rigid, not free, in my drawings. I abruptly stopped drawing all together and when the impulse to draw caused me to do it, it was for my eyes only. I don’t recall rehab involving art in any form, either as an assessment or as an activity that could open the brain to more.
I drew some food journal entries. I drew food in other places. I enjoyed exercising eye/hand coordination. I found I only like drawing in pen and that I also like the imperfection that came with my drawings. Then I felt ready to paint and cast about for a subject. You, dear reader, will not be surprised to learn my first portraits were of vegetables. Other than the journals, sketchbooks, or pages I lost, set aside, cannot relocate, etc., I have kept all my food drawings. I can trigger memories about the food, people, and circumstances of the original event as well as when I drew the sketch just by looking at the picture again. The dates listed give me information.
I do not recall with exactness. A series of pictures with dates helps me to know my progression over time with certainty. I can see a picture of my own development and the foods that helped me in that recovery process when reviewing my artwork. It is rigid. It is colorful.
It is joyful.
It is beautiful.
Me. Food. Art.