All of It

An exercise in mining the subconscious, but only a small fraction of that process...

First of all, not much conscious thought is put into the title of a piece.  The title comes from the same place as the work itself; the subconscious.  "All of It" just seemed right.  And so it was named.

"All of It" is a graphite drawing done on a thick stock white.  I first drew a number of circles, various sizes, overlapping.  Then I drew an image of a woman's face only in the circles.  The image of a man's face was drawn in the negative space "behind" the circles.  Or "under" the circles.  Finally, shading.  For taste.

That is what my conscious mind did.  I drew circles and a double image, a man's face, a woman's face, facing in opposite directions.  Now is where the mining comes into play...why did I draw this?  What is my subconscious mind telling me?  What is the message?

I always enjoy counting when reviewing a piece.  The circles, which I seem to want to call "bubbles," number 60.  Exactly 60.  I think.  It's difficult to count but on a second counting I do get 60 again.  So then the question becomes, "what does the number 60 mean to you?  What does it make you think of?"  For me personally, I go right to 60 as an age.  I have yet to reach 60.  What about you?  What is "60" to you?

And what do bubbles make you think of?  I think of children blowing bubbles, firstly.  So now I have age again, an age at two different positions on the scale.  A span of a life.  The man and woman seem to fall between, perhaps they are near 30.  And I'm brought back to the title, "All of It."  All of the span of a 60 year life?  That would reflect a limited view of life over 60, wouldn't you say?  Something seems off there, as I know life to continue to change and evolve after 60 through several examples of people I've known over 60, 70, and 80.  Hmm...

The man is quite hidden and the woman stands out.  There are no definitive edges to either image, yet the bubbles themselves have borders, set borders.  My feeling is that the bubbles are rising as opposed to falling.  And they are rising into darkness, rising from the light.  But a cloudy light...a stormy day changing into night and space and beyond.  And the bubbles in the darkness are light, crisper, almost unfinished, though...

It's difficult to continue this process of mining the subconscious without revealing too much that is personal.  But that is the general idea.  What do you see in a work...what does it mean to you...what does it remind you of...what is going on...what is the context of your own life...it's a form of art therapy, really.  I'd highly encourage you to try a similar exercise.  Draw something, anything.  Let your subconscious decide.  Then explore and study your own drawing.  You've begun a conversation with your subconscious.  There is something very valuable in there waiting to be unlocked.