Drawing this relaxed-looking armchair set me off; whenever I’ve had the odd moment during the last week, I’ve looked around for a chair to draw.
At Frankie & Benny’s, I focused on the chair itself and omitted the surroundings, such as the table leg in front of it.
As has so often happens, I started at the top but didn’t appreciate that I’d need to draw at a slightly larger scale to accommodate the detail of the chair’s back, so it has turned out taller and narrower than it should be.
Every detail of Frankie & Benny’s has been chosen to evoke the atmosphere of a 1950s New York Italian American diner: furniture, fittings and cut-out metal lettering. The F&B logo is brush-lettering, similar to the Walt Disney signature of the same vintage.
In a local independent cafe, Rich & Fancy on Queen Street, Horbury, the lettering on the blackboard is hand-drawn, and the chair is less chic and cosmopolitan.
Pizza Express goes for a retro style that might have earned a Design Council label in the 1960s.
Back in the studio, I was at last able to study a chair which wasn’t partially obscured by a table, a customer or a waitress.
The folding Ikea chair gives me a better chance to observe the negative spaces between the tubular metal framework and the plastic seat and back: triangles and shapes that remind me of a wedge of cheese with the nose cut off.
It’s frustrating at times, but I have to admit that I’m enjoying going back to basics with my printed booklets, doing a bit of detective work to see where the hold up in printing speed is creeping in. So far, so good: this ultra-simple booklet with placeholder text prints out in a couple of minutes and it makes no difference if I use GIF images or larger format TIFs, which are about twice the size.
It’s such a pleasure to construct a really simple booklet, dropping little rough sketches in wherever I please, that it makes me want to design another booklet for real, perhaps taking a sketchbook and scanning the illustrations separately then typing up my handwritten notes.
I’m using Adobe InDesign CC 2017, a program which seems to have its quirks if, like me, you’re more used to Microsoft Publisher or Serif PagePlus.
Image manipulation and booklet printing get me every time: I always grab the frame rather than the image itself when I want to change its size, but surely by now I’ve learnt that you don’t select ‘Print’ if you want to print a booklet!