For me art is the outward expression of my personal impressions of the world around us.
My drawings seek to convey my personal fascination with cities in general but also the beauty of architecture, light, perspective and composition.
Actively I travel to and scout the cities I love for new ideas to turn into highly detailed ink and watercolour drawings capturing the specific mood and energy through the use of certain perspectives and with a special emphasis on light.
Much of my work, also my paintings are thus based on extensive travels abroad through Europe and north America. When I walk through I city I take in everything I find interesting often combining many impressions to form one single drawing. There are many places I like to draw and usually I only reproduce the places I have a personal bond with or which have captured my imagination since childhood. Particularly New York fascinates me and that particular urban environment provides me with endless ideas for new drawings. Other places I keep revisiting both on paper and in real life are for instance Budapest, Venice and London.
A drawing usually starts as a quick pencil sketch outlining the perspective and composition before I begin inking. The actual work on an ink drawing can take from two weeks for a small piece (18x25cm) and over half a year for a major drawing (80x110cm). Some drawings are clearly defined in terms of composition before I start, in other drawings I make changes as I go along just to keep the work interesting for myself or in order to improve the initial idea.
Generally spoken, I don’t care very much about any particular working methods, so long as the result pleases me it’s good enough for me. Because of the ink technique I use, changes can only be made using a box cutter knife to scratch away mistakes. After inking, I add one or several layers of thin watercolour washes to enhance the perspective and add the much desired to light actually make the drawing come to life. Often one drawings serves as a precursor or simple a dress rehearsal for future pieces. Only rarely I resort to using sketches and photo’s. This is usually only done for specific (architectural) details and only serves the purpose of enhancing the overall drawing.
My work is currently regularly being exhibited in the Netherlands, where I’m in gallery exhibitions and at art fairs.
Find out more about Stefan Bleekrode: www.stefanbleekrode.com