visual poetry

Illustration Friday – Wheel of Fortune

WheelofFortuneSo – the drawing in this post started off as my offering for the monthly Draw-a-Bird Day, which is the 8th of every month. Ms. Laura over at Create Art Everyday had started the tradition of celebrating Draw-a-Bird Day monthly and I was so proud of myself for finally getting it together to not only remember it, but to begin a drawing ahead of schedule. I decided to draw a cormorant, inspired by this post at A-Wing and A-Way (who knew that so many great artists kept pet birds?). And then the drawing sort of took on a life of its own…I kept working on it and working on it…Once I was done, I decided it needed only a title to complete it. Drawing (ink and colored pencil on paper) and composition by me. Have a great Friday!

Old Poem Saturday – !blac – Cummings

!blac_cummings“!blac” by E.E. Cummings is a very short poem that takes a bit of “activation energy” to read the first time – but it rewards your hard work. In my research on the poem, I found several sources that pointed out its haiku-like qualities: from the vertical composition akin to Japanese scrolls to the three “periods” or lines you get if you render it horizontally. It is yet another dimension to this so visual of poems. Drawing (ink on paper) and composition by me – inspired by an original design by Emily Grossman. Have a great weekend!


Double Original Friday – Reductive Anatomy II

ReductiveAnatomyIIHappy Friday to all! I wanted to post another drawing from what’s becoming my “Reductive Anatomy” Series. After the first drawing (click here to see it), I kept exploring the idea of mixing realistic anatomy details in unrealistic proportions – a series of homunculus’ (homuncului?), if you will. I think this one is for those days when you hear something that pierces straight into your heart. Drawing (pencil on newsprint) by me.

Double Original Friday – Triptych I



Over the past couple of weeks, I have continued to explore painting on my collages with a mixture of Elmer’s glue and paint – which I had started doing for last Friday’s post, “The Family Dinner Party.” This week’s piece is a compilation of several inspirations: the traditional triptych in western art, seeing the work of K.O. Götz at the Harvard Art Museum, and numerous collage artists I’ve been admiring online (Ben Stainton and Charles Wilkins, among others). I found that I didn’t have words to go with this collage and so it stands on its own, a kind of visual poetry. Collage by me. Happy Friday!

Double Original Friday – Reductive Anatomy


Sometimes, you start with a general feeling of unease and it can be hard to put words to it…I’ve been feeling out of sorts for the last couple of days and having a hard time explaining. When a doodle that was started during an overly-long meeting matured into this drawing (aided by an old anatomy textbook I have), I stepped back, took a look at it, and thought, “Yep – this is exactly what I wanted to say.” Drawing (pencil on newsprint) by me. I wish everyone a great weekend!

Illustrated Thursday – Tree Tomato by Rick Zuzow


It’s been far too long since I featured something from my friend, Mr. Rick Zuzow – his words and photograph were featured here once before. I drew this picture inspired by a photograph Rick took of a gorgeous bright red tree tomato (also known as a tamarillo), sliced in half on a simple white plate, accompanied by these words. To me, it was a zen still life and a found poem. Tree tomatoes are not well known in the U.S., but are eaten more commonly in South America (where the plant is thought to originate). My favorite random fact about them is that they were used as a culinary substitute for scarce tropical fruits during World War II in New Zealand. Drawing (ink on paper) and composition by me, words and original photograph by Rick Zuzow.

Excerpt Tuesday – In Memoriam John Coltrane – Stillman


Today’s excerpt is from the jazz poem “In Memoriam John Coltrane” by Mr. Michael Stillman (b. 1940) – read the whole poem here (about halfway down the page) and, if you can, read it out loud. It has an amazing and evocative rhythm. Mr. Stephen Cramer points out in the post that this poem is actually three haiku! The photo collage behind it is of Mathias Goeritz’s Mensaje: Decoración Mural, 1960. Goertiz would rhythmically pound nails through sheet metal creating a pattern with pattern and texture. I tried in vain to find a video clip of Goertiz, who died in 1990, in the act of creating  one of these pieces. But you don’t need a video clip to hear the beat of the nails driving through the metal. Photo collage and composition by me.

Double Original Friday – Motto of the Grand Old Order of Molluscs and Chelonii


This poem is an answer to a haiku challenge from RonovanWrites to use the words “Turtle” and “Snail” in a haiku. Well, I took the challenge, but interpreted it loosely – their scientific names made it into the title! Poem, photograph (of the General Grant tree in Sequoia National Forest), and composition by me. Happy Friday!

IV of Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird


Okay! It’s week 4 and stanza IV of 13 Ways of Looking at a Blackbird by Wallace Stevens (1879-1955).  You can read the whole poem here and see my illustrated stanzas I, II, and III. Original video (of afternoon sunlight through half-closed venetian blinds) by Emily Grossman, GIF and composition by me. Enjoy!