Gearing Down


You enter the raw edge of your mind; the naked line between you and your surroundings drops away. Whoever you are or think you are cracks off.

Natalie Goldberg, The Great Spring

The final day of an art festival always finds me tired and seated in the shade, looking for a subject to sketch. Reading Natalie Goldberg put me in a quality state of mind (I absolutely love writers with a Buddhist core), and looking up from my book at the tree in front of my booth, I could not help but gaze at the bark textures and twisting, serpentine lines of the grain. Alas, I had no pencil. But I decided to give it a try anyway, with a ballpoint pen. Within minutes, I was absorbed into the tree, and it no longer mattered that the Sunday-morning crowd was thin. As a student of art history, I have read of the form-creating possibilities of line when drawing with ink, but I have experimented so little myself with it. The morning has been sweet with this quiet space for drawing.

Thanks for reading.
I draw in order to learn.
I journal when I feel alone.
I blog to remind myself that I am not alone.


4 Responses to “Gearing Down”

  1. Paula Vining Says:

    Hi David, nice meeting you at the show yesterday, your work is really beautiful. I love your pen sketch of the tree bark too! I am the patron who asked so many questions about your prints and I truly appreciate you sharing all the information in addition to your work. 😉


    • davidtripp Says:

      Thank you for your kind words, Paula. It was a genuine pleasure of visiting with you as well. I have no trade secrets. I love talking to other interested artists about details.


  2. Xraypics Says:

    The overall shape and the texture of this is most pleasing, almost abstract. I think, having seen your beautiful pencil sketches of winter trees, that you should do more pen-and-ink drawings. That fine edge and stark contrast between the ink and paper would suit those subjects so well.


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