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Picturing a World

Clearing the clutter (1): Maid reading in a library

In the dreaded process of preparing to buy a new computer, I am trying to clear out old files and links—and, of course, being distracted by coming across images and texts I had saved but forgotten about. Emblematic case in point: Maid reading in a library.

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Tanaudel’s TV sketching

Blog post alert: Something I would never have thought of: jotting down quick sketches—graphic or verbal—of what you see in the background while watching television series. Kathleen Jennings did. Read her post on TV Sketching—Backgrounds. Then try it!

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Hockney, Contre-jour

How many times have you looked out a museum window or left an exhibition and seen the world differently? For just a little while you feel like you have stepped into a painting or else that you are seeing it as an artist might. If you're David Hockney, you paint it!

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Sphere 1951

As a follow-up to yesterday's post, what fun! Father Christmas calling down the reindeer in a more natural version of his ice palace. This is obviously not the North Pole; but, after all, why not imagine his workshop somewhere in the North Woods? Or take the picture literally and see it as the backdrop for a theatrical production. I'm devouring it like a bon-bon, but if we play this year's story-generating game, there are already three possibilities: a story about Santa Claus, a story about a staged show, a story about a 1951 magazine.

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Ten Terrible Ideas

Blog post alert: In Observation Journal: Ten Terrible Things, writer-illustrator Kathleen Jennings illustrates and explores an exercise she picked up from Helen Marshall: As quick as you can, jot down ten terrible ideas for a novel based on the X-meets-Y model. Examples: The Elements of Style as a musical, Where the Wild Things Are if it were a cooking show. Writers can use it to loosen up. Readers can turn it into a parlor game—or in these days when we should not be gathering for parties, one of you can plot a story about a group who did. My quick variation: Ten Terrible Romances, e.g., Heathcliff meets Bridget Jones, Elizabeth Bennett meets Superman. What's yours? (Warning: As Jennings observes, you may find yourself trying to develop one of your wacky ideas. Well, why not?)

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