People I’ve never met & conversations I’ve never had
As I said in my last review I love looking through artists sketchbooks, especially ones where the artist has used the book as a dumping ground to unload all of their creativity on. I love seeing mistakes, jumbles, bits of inspiration cut and pasted in.
This book is not a sketchbook but it embodies this spirit perfectly.
People I’ve never met & Conversations I’ve never had, does pretty much what it says on the tin. It is a collection of portraits and snippets of fictional conversation lovingly rendered in a variety of styles by artist, Nick White.
The variety is best shown through the portraits, some of which are highly detailed and show off the level of White’s talent while others are drawn crudely in blunt pencils and crayons which are either drawn in the crude style of young children or which are indeed the childhood drawings of the artist himself, others still are collages cut together from various magazines and catalogues.
Not all of the portraits are straight forward, some require a pause on behalf of the reader as they study the image to try and find the face, some deceptively simple and childlike but hiding artistic sophistication.
As for the conversations, these fall into the same categories, some are collage, some paintings others crude pencil drawings. They depict brief conversations, often little more than a couple of lines long between two unseen characters, the conversations are genuinely funny and I found myself more than once laughing out loud at the brilliant dead pan humour.
The text is layered over backgrounds that for the most part are irrelevant to the conversations but which give the text a further artistic element which make them much more enjoyable to look at than tradition text pages would be.
This book definitely isn’t going to be for everyone but for me it hit the right spot. The mish mash of styles and the jumble of colours is exactly what appeals to me.
My main complaint is the length, the book is woefully short, I could have happily devoured a book two or three times longer than this.