Sharon regrets what she said about Mitch and realize it was her fear of being alone that made her react in such a way. However, she is still determined to find a way to get the old Mitch back and we’ll find out what these options are soon enough.
I always imagined the story culminating to a point where Mitch’s agency emerges and he discovers a moment of peace and joy. So far in the story, Mitch’s life has been about fulfilling roles that are ascribed to him by other people (predominantly his mother). After overhearing his mother at the doctor’s office, he finds solace in the simple yet beautiful things in life, through the soulful music of a street performer.
Reflections on Process
I was very anxious to finish page ten last night because it has been a while since I posted and I’m very sorry for the delay. I’ve been wrestling with the page for nearly two weeks and became overwhelmed with the fear of failing to deliver. Last night, I reached out to a good friend and let out all my neurotic thoughts and I’m really grateful for his perspective and understanding. Although I really wanted to obsessively work on the drawing into the dawn, it became obvious that I needed to leave the page, get some sleep and return in the morning with fresh eyes. Even though the drawing is far from satisfactory, I thought some good will come from posting it and going through some of the mistakes and struggles.
The details in the bottom panel bogged me down. After the drawing was finished on paper a week ago, it came down to the decision of redrawing or editing the last panel and I regretfully chose the latter (thinking it would be more ‘efficient’). The goal of the panel was to create an upward sweep using perspective with a low horizon line to capture the joy and freedom that Mitch is feeling. Referring back to an illustration from Through Ian’s Eyes, I decided to use a similar composition but change the tone of the drawing from ominous to hopeful.
My personal critique of the final-for-now drawing is that the characters feel choppy and stiff. I overworked them and would love to take another stab at the illustration to introduce more lyricism and fluidity in the brushstrokes. After I get some distance from the page, I will also experiment a bit with the character posing to make the emotion of the sax player and Mitch more believable.
I think the primary problem I had with this page is the lack of studies and practice before tackling the final illustration. I spent 98% of my time fixing the pudding-like faces and wonky saxophone. I didn’t fully understand the forms at that angle and this is where technique really kicked my butt and I couldn’t get the illustration to the emotional level I wanted to achieve. Since there is very little text on this page, I had no way of covering up the ‘uglies’ (not like I’ve ever done that before or anything ;)).
Sometimes our work doesn’t turn out the way we envisioned, despite the effort we put into them. Last night I was so fed up I wanted to throw my computer across the room (because logically it must be the computer’s fault that the facial anatomy resembled pudding). After all that, I think the important thing is to accept the frustration and failures as part of artistic growth, keep learning, reaching and of course scribbling.