Pandorica #4

This was one of my free, one-day downloads.

For 24 hours (17 – 18 Jan 2011), people could download a printable copy of my b&w fine art drawing, Pandorica #4.  It would print on an 8.5″ x 11″ sheet of white paper at 150 pixels/inch.

This was the first of my one-day downloads. From time to time, I’ll offer print-quality downloads of my artwork, but — due to file sizes and bandwidth — they’ll be available for 24 hours or less.  After that, the file will be removed from the Internet.

I’ll announce them here, and at social media.

Pandorica 5 – Completed

This weekend, I completed the fifth of my Pandorica-inspired drawings.

This is the first of the bigger drawings.

The circle is about 10 1/2″ across, and it’s drawn on a 14″ x 17″ sheet of paper.

The design was drawn, one block at a time, using a zero-point Koh-i-Noor drawing pen and black India ink.

First, I draw guidelines in pencil, to indicate the circles and a few angled lines so the blocks don’t get too skewed in relation to the whole.

Everything else is drawn, freehand and intuitively, with an eye to keeping the piece in balance as I work.

Like many non-representational works, one goal of this piece is to keep the eye moving around it.  There may be areas that attract your attention, but it’s fleeting attention… you don’t linger there, but keep scanning the work.

Below, a scan of the drawing (next to a ruler) shows the approximate size of  the blocks.  Most of the blocks range from 1/32″ square up to those with sides about 3/4″.

The work is inspired by the dimensional art on the Pandorica in recent Dr. Who episodes, as well as the Mayan calendar, mandalas, and other circular works.

Pandorica detail


Pandorica 5 – In Progress

Yesterday, I started my largest Pandorica-inspired drawing so far. The drawing pad is 14″ x 17″ and — in the photo — you can get a sense of proportion by comparing the drawing with my pen.

(The pen is 5 1/4″ tall.)

This work will take many days to complete, but — from the start — I’m really pleased with it.

In this photo, you can see how I start each drawing with two circular guidelines, drawn lightly in pencil.  They’ll be erased when the work is completed and fully dry.

After that, I place blocks that indicate the general slant of each section in the work.

Though my angles sometimes go a little askew, the basic blocks keep me on track.

This drawing will remain black and white.  I may try color in my later, similar works — in fact, I’m sure that I will — but this one is going to be the first really large work in this series, so I’m sticking with the basic concept that worked for years.

(I drew these in the margins of my class notes, when I was in my teens.  Then, around 1970 – 1973, I sketched them as 9″ x 12″ drawings and turned those into massive wall murals, usually about 15 feet tall.)

This partically-completed drawing is number five in this Pandorica-inspired series.  I’ve already posted my first recent, related work, and then I did three slightly smaller ones that I’ll experiment with (color, black background, etc.).

After them, I drew a very small, detailed piece to see how well I like the smaller block size.  It turned out well, and I’ll mat it next week before placing it online.

Pandorica #5 - detailNow, the big project is this larger work.  You can see a small area from it, at full size (at 72 dpi), at right.

I’m using a zero-point pen with black (India) ink on drawing paper that has a very smooth surface.

In the photo at right, you can see that each block is drawn individually.  That’s part of what gives the work its energy and keeps the viewer’s eye moving around, noticing the hundreds of blocks and nuances in the piece.

*Note: I have no connection with the British TV series, Dr. Who, or the artwork of the Pandorica shown on it.  My work is simply inspired by the Pandorica episodes, and other related artwork.

Pen & Ink – Pandorica Series #1

I’ve been thinking in terms of a series of abstracts, but I didn’t have a sense of direction until I re-watched the 2010 Pandorica episodes of the TV series, Dr. Who.

Something about the design on the outside of the box triggered some ideas.

Oh, these art concepts also reference the Mayan calendar, mandalas and some steampunk imagery.  However, since the gears started turning (no pun intended) when I saw the Pandorica again… for me, it’s “the Pandorica series.”


If you’ve known me from childhood, you probably know that I’ve been drawing these boxy designs since junior high school.  These patterns decorated the margins of almost all my school notes.

Later, they were featured as cards, huge murals, and — in the 1980s — even as illustrations for CNN. (I’m not kidding. The commissioned me to draw a series for them.)

Usually, the designs were rectangular.  I often softened them with swirls and stars, as if they were floating in space.

When I looked at the Pandorica again, this past week, I suddenly envisioned the boxes in a circle.  I know that I want to do something on canvas, but a first attempt in acrylics simply ruled out one approach that didn’t work.

(I have other canvas-related ideas in mind, some of which I’ll test today.)

So, I went back to my artist’s journal… the one I rarely put online because it’s not usually as specific, finished and detailed as this page.

The actual work is black ink on white paper, and it’s about 12″ x 12″. (The art didn’t fully fit on my scanner, so one edge is missing about 1/8 inch.)

It took me about three hours to draw this. It’s very detailed and — except for two circles drawn as the general guidelines — created stream-of-consciousness.

My initial impulse was to paint inside the circle and outside of it, using black India ink.  I want this to be something suspended in space.

However, there are many other directions in which I can (and probably will) take this concept.

So, I’m leaving this sketch as-is, as a reference to inspire several pieces in this series.