Ronald Kok, Black Paint Sketch #1, 2017
I never cease to be taken aback by the power of black on white. This week I had some leftover black paint in a palette and decided to make quick sketches with it. I think I still had the concept of “story” in my head because each of these begs for a story to surround it. Part of the enjoyment of art is making that connection point for a viewer and imagining what they may come up with as they take in what you’ve put to paper.
As in so many things, quick and expressive sketches like this rely on the amazing human brain and imagination to fill in gaps and color, etc. Though I leave lots of white, it is not as if what I’ve left has nothing to say. Amazing.
Ronald Kok, Black Paint Sketch #2, 2017
Ronald Kok, Black Paint Sketch #3, 2017
Ronald Kok, Black Paint Sketch #4, 2017
Ronald Kok, Black Paint Sketch #5, 2017
I work at a day program for adults with developmental disabilities. Back before I was given the opportunity to lead an art studio at the program, I was mostly helping to lead the recreational component of what we do. We would take the individuals out bowling, swimming, visiting museums, doing volunteer work, and many other things. But we also spent time back at the program doing simple crafts and coloring pages. It was at that time that I began to draw again just for fun. Since I had pencil crayons and construction paper available, plus a handy-dandy spirograph set, I let my imagination flow around the motifs of those strange shapes and bright colors. What developed was a series of fantastical drawings, many of which look like illustrations for children’s books, meant to promote a story in the mind of the viewer.
I love stories. One of my favorite things about being a dad was the hours and hours I spent reading stories to my kids. I look at these drawings again and I can’t help but love them. Not because they are the greatest work I’ve ever done, but because they were done in great affection and a feeling of creative freedom. Considering them now, they were a wonderful place to start for someone so long removed from creating art. The fun returned and the imagination was re-engaged.
Here are those drawings for you to see. I hope you have fun with them. And maybe, must maybe, your imagination will be rekindled, too. Let the story unfold…