Cultural Maps and Drawing from Life

Lately I've been thinking about creating a series of drawings on the history of a place and its cultural waves through time, much like Rebecca Solnit's Infinite City: A San Francisco Atlas, or Judith Schalansky's Atlas of Remote Islands. In these works, the illustrations, typefaces, stories and research are seamless and create worlds that I can get lost in all day. Another inspiration, Jennifer New's Drawing from Life: The Journal as Art, makes me feel better about doodling in my journals.

Louise Despont

Just saw these drawings by
Louise Despont on seesaw's blog and I fell in love.


Nancy Spero

Maira Kalman

I love the way she uses space and color to create mosaics of activity.

Charlotte Salomon

More illustrations to muse on....


Raison d'etre

Snagged this one from ArtLunchbox and I couldn't agree more.
Also, a quote from The Accidental Masterpiece by Michael Kimmelman that I think accompanies the Jarmusch statement pretty well:
"I believe we inherit a great river of knowledge, a flow of patterns coming from many sources. The information that comes from deep in the evolutionary past we call genetics. The information passed along from hundreds of years ago we call culture. The information passed along from decades ago we call family and the information offered months ago we call education. But it is all information that flows through us. The brain is adapted to the river of knowledge and exists only as a creature in that river. Our thoughts are profoundly molded by this long historic flow, and none of us exists, self-made, in isolation from it."

Sonia Delaunay

I love the colors and textures created by this jewish-french artist/textile designer from the early 1900's. I've been trying to illustrate a children's book for my 1 year old nephew and can't get enough of her patterns.