Thursday, 12 August 2010

American sketchbook: Panic maps

Jet lag going West makes you think 6 am is just coming up to lunch. Coming back is different: I'm too confused to decide how, but it's not quite so much fun. And of course you're not on holiday, and having to make sense of a day like today is like arm-wrestling with your cerebral cortex.

Every morning at about six-thirty in St Rafael, with a black coffee, without a care in the world (apart from trying to access my new bank account and try and figure why my PayPal password was suddenly no good) I'd wander into Annie and Archie's yard and light up a holiday roll-up and start sketching.

I'm not sure if this is worth sharing, but I did a few of these weirdly obsessive-looking doodles. They're similar to some attempts I made years ago to come up with some paintings that I never finished. I think these drawings were made in a state of mild trepidation at the thought of getting a car out of the Hertz garage in San Francisco and driving it to The Grand Canyon. I really don't like American road signs; there's just a little too much potentially lethal ambiguity, and I think my subconscious, as revealed by these doodles, was coming up with a Highway To Hell panic map that I could enjoy later.


  1. Do you think that when ideas come around like that it is something to do with modularity? I think it's like a ladies' ova, we are born with x amount of ideas and, if we're lucky enough to have developed a creative modus operandi, they'll just keep popping up until we fix them out there in da world.

  2. Yeah, lovely thought isn't it? Some ideas get born but don't do much, hang around at home and stay in their bedrooms. Funny these should pop out in SF; the circumstances were unique and the ocean and continent of distance from pressure really helped. Might do some graphic versions later on today.