Clan House

I worked some more on Clan House.  This is the first drawing that I didn’t finish in class.  I want to have more control over the parts I erase so I bought a couple of fine edged rubbers to add to my batterie de atelier.

clan house22

A tricky new thing that I am finding out about drawing, in addition to How to Draw, is ‘how do I know when I’m finished’? I can figure that out pretty easily with an art quilt, a poem or haiku, a photograph, a video or clay sculpture.  With drawing, I am still finding my way to the end.

With Clan House, the finish came when the night woods couldn’t look any more like night woods and a chink of light shone through the doorway

clan house20a

Clan House, charcoal & conte chalk pastel, 42 x 59cm, 2013

and when I had refined the shapes of the totem animal ghosts, handprints & the spirit guide.

clan house21a

When the Muscogee meet a stranger, they ask, “Naginseemaleghee dadee?”  [This means “Who do you cling to?”]  While families include people who are directly related to each other, clans are composed of all people who are descendants of the same ancestral clan grouping. Like many Native American nations, the Muscogee Creek are matrilineal; each person belongs to the clan of his or her mother, who belongs to the clan of her mother.  Clan members do not claim “blood relation” but consider each other as family due to their membership in the same clan.

In my journey through the woods, along the river and back into the past, to my Muscogee roots, I ask myself and those I meet, “Who do I cling to?”

Perhaps this member of the Bird clan knows the answer.

clan house18


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