JohnKennellFineArt's Shop Announcement

Last June I finished a large pencil drawing entitled 'Hayman,’ which depicts the 2002 Hayman Wildfire smoke plume as I saw it from Denver, Colorado. The image I remember most vividly is the one I incorporated into my drawing; the view out my forth-floor apartment window the second or third night of the fire. That evening I saw a boiling mass of smoke erupting out of the mountains to the southwest of town. It was back-lit by the sunset and resembled a volcanic explosion more than a thunderstorm.

I wanted to incorporate a feeling of scale and power into this piece, and to push my pin-point pencil drawing technique as I could. It was a legitimate feat of endurance that I chipped away at, little by little, over nine years, in three towns, in two states.

While working on Hayman, I would occasionally steal parts of it with my digital camera to experimentally create Rorschach-like, or kaleidoscopic images in Photoshop by copying and mirroring them. After completing the piece, I remembered this process, expanded upon it, and found a whole new outlet for generating unique images.

The particular formula I follow is somewhat precise within each series, but the individual steps are more intuitive in nature. Once an image has reached a finished state, I flatten it, and throw its constituent elements away, forcing myself to start fresh every time.

If my work embodies a single aesthetic, it is ‘elaboration on a theme.’ I could never have imagined at the time the diversity of images that would spring from that single view out my window almost ten years ago.

This shop accepts Etsy Gift Cards.