How do you visualize time use, happiness, and mental health? Here’s how artist blogger Sue Clancy does it…
My artistic challenge for myself recently was “Can I talk about time use, happiness, and mental health in a visual non-verbal way?” and I attempted to do it in a wordless story. For a public artist book collection. It felt a bit like flossing my teeth in front of a large audience. I’ve titled my effort “Time Tavern” and the original artwork, a 24-page artist book, is now at the Brooklyn Art Library in Brooklyn, New York.
For “Time Tavern” I created a series of dog characters and explored multiple ways humans use time; cooking food, mixing drinks, making music, eating, drinking, listening to music. I included recipes within this book so a reader could play with time themselves if they’re inclined. The images included in this post are from this book.
The dog-musicians are very loosely based on some musicians I’m lucky enough to know. The same is true of many of the dog characters, they’re very loosely based on people I’ve known or seen in real life. A few of my dog characters are breed specific but most are mutts. It was my effort at creating “every-person” characters.
It’s an artistic challenge to create characters visually and keep them similar looking from page to page while also allowing them to “grow” or “change”. I also tried to visually foreshadow events and utilize other literary techniques – but using visual images only. Not certain that I’ve completely pulled it off for “Time Tavern” but it’s a good start and I intend to keep practicing these techniques in my future wordless stories.
My original “Time Tavern” book is now in the Brooklyn Art Library public collection, meaning that if you’re in Brooklyn you could visit my book in person and also see many other books by other artists. In case you’ll not be in New York state (USA) I’ve also made it where you can download an ebook version of my book here or you can see a video of it here.
About the author of this post: Sue Clancy is supervised in her professional art studio by a long-haired miniature dachshund and an orange and white tabby cat. The supervisors take shifts making sure Clancy’s artwork gets produced and then goes to commercial galleries for exhibition. They also make sure lunch breaks regularly occur. See more of Clancy’s work here.