Month: March 2010

The Cafe Terrace at Night

I think I have finally drawn a line under “The Dessert” and decided to call it a day as far as revisions and tweaking are concerned. I think I have clarified the story to the point where almost all ambiguity is removed from the ending, despite still being ”open-ended” in the sense that the reader does not get to see what the protagonist does, nor witness the consequences. It was an interesting exercise and generated far more debate than my previous stories. I’ve also learned a bit more about doing the artwork and am tempted to continue working in that vein, with a few variations here and there.

For the font throughout “The Dessert”, I used “Crosspatcher”s Delight Normal”, another free font I downloaded from the internet. It’s quite a versatile font that I might reuse in some other stories. I used up almost half a bottle of Winsor and Newton black ink in the process of drawing the Dessert, but at least, I haven’t destroyed my sable brush yet! I also ordered a set of vintage Hunt 102 nibs from the USA, I’m looking forward to trying them out and hoping they’ll be considerably less scratchy than the new versions.

I have two more ideas for short stories based on paintings, but am slightly more inclined to work on this one, Van Gogh’s very famous “Cafe Terrace in Arles, at Night”. I’ve gone from picking fairly obscure paintings to yet another instantly recognisable work, like Hopper’s “Nighthawks”… in a sense, it is cliched, but there are so many possible stories that can propagate from a single scene and they don’t have to be at all conventional nor predictable.

Cafe Terrace at Night - Vincent van Gogh

I am still in the early mulling/thinking stages for this story, but hopefully it won’t be a very long one and should be confined to between 10-15 pages as most of my other stories, and the focus of the story will be the cafe itself instead of any one individual and I will leave it to the reader to piece the ideas together. Perhaps I should spend more mornings at my favourite Kensington cafe working this story over, it will be another somewhat complex one to pull off and may not have immediate appeal for everyone. Still, it will be an interesting challenge!