I like the choices in this tiny drawing by R.O. Blechman:
|Blechman's figures are so small, his word balloons have to be larger than his drawing to make words legible.|
The size and simplicity of Blechman's drawing don't shield him from the kinds of decisions and trade offs we associate with larger, more complex works. In fact, Blechman's slender tools can make each choice even more significant.
For example, an artist who uses 25 lines to draw hair has a margin for error; a few lines more or less, or an occasional mistaken line, are hardly noticeable. Blechman's patented two line haircut makes each line important:
One line would not be enough, three would be too many.
Similarly, note what a difference it makes that the man's eyes are horizontal slits while the woman's eyes are vertical slits. These are the simplest, most basic marks a human being can make, yet the proportional impact of his choice on the content of the drawing is substantial.
When we look at Blechman's original drawing close up we see him making some unothodox choices.
Since the world began, no art teacher ever said it was OK to leave the top half of a head unfinished in order to focus on the individual hairs of a beard stubble:
Similarly, who would leave an arm disconnected at the elbow, its line flowing away into space, while focusing all that attention on the polka dot pattern of a bow tie?
|Did the artist lose interest halfway down the arm?|
Here he draws the leg all the way down to the ground, then chooses to leave off one foot:
And look at the way he chooses to draw hands: just enough information to suggest the possible existence of a thumb.
A show of Blechman's art was recently exhibited at the Norman Rockwell Museum in Massachusetts, and a retrospective exhibition will be on display at the School of Visual Arts in NY beginning in October.