À Bout de Souffle

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The cars hiss by my window
Like the waves down on the beach
I got this girl beside me
But she’s out of reach

The Doors — Cars Hiss by My Window

Another piece that grew out of my attempt to get better at drawing faces. It is based on a picture of Jean Seberg in Breathless, a very iconic movie by Jean-Luc Godard, probably the most famous Nouvelle Vague movie. I love this movie, it is very stylish, I love the young Belmondo, how he’s buying and barely reading newspapers all the time, casually stealing cars, talking nonsense; and Jean Seberg, her uncertainty about everything, how she deals with certain situations, evading and not; their clothes, how they talk with each other…

Recently I bought a coffee-table book with photos Raymond Cauchetier did during the shooting of some of the most famous Nouvelle Vague classics. The above drawing is based on one of them. When finishing the pencil sketch, I decided to make a very “basic” shading, only dark or light, no shades in-between. I thought about doing it black-and-white, covering half her face in black (the movie is in black/white). But I did not dare to try it. Luckily I was not alone, but sitting in a café with other sketchers, and they helped me in choosing the colors. Hope you like the result as much as I do :)


Mrs Peel, we’re needed!

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After the Breeders’ picture, I have been trying out some more portraits. I’m really bad at drawing faces, so it’s quite hard to recognize my portraits… But I want to improve, not only drawing faces but also using my watercolor pencils. And this Diana Rigg portrait is the latest outcome of my efforts. I like it :) Just as I like her, as Emma Peel on The Avengers! I started the drawing on her birthday a few days ago, but after finishing the pencil sketch I did not dare to change anything. So I finished it only last night. Actually I’m not sure if it is already “finished” or if I should do something with the sorrounding white space…


Just do it!

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When I was a painter I painted you well
Too bad I have to die

The Breeders — When I Was A Painter

The most amazing thing happened! Yesterday I was at a concert of The Breeders, the band of Kim Deal, who was the bass player of the Pixies. And during the last days I made the above drawing of the band, based on a picture that is in the liner notes of one of their albums and hence quite well-known. I brought it to the concert, with the vague intention of bringing it on stage somehow. If I would dare to do so. And I did it! During the encore I threw it on stage, and Kelley picked it up, looked at it a bit puzzled, and put it on an amp. When they left the stage after the concert, they let the picture there, so I thought that’s it. But then today a friend told me to look up their instagram page. And there it is, they posted my drawing on their instagram, and also twitter and facebook accounts :) Amazing feeling to see my picture there, with all those likes. And in complete anonymity ;)

It was a fantastic concert by the way! The sisters are sooo cute, and they all seemed so normal and nice, it was really fun :)

Strangers In Hofgarten

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…Alles auf dem Rasen

Die Toten Hosen — Hofgarten

In the last few weeks, whenever the weather was good, I sat on a popular green in the evening, thinking, listening to music, avoiding life — and sketching my fellow layabouts. The result is a series of postcards, some of which you see above.

Midnight Lace — Nostalgia in Blue

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I’m a bit old-fashioned in some sense: I like old stuff. Among this stuff are old movies, I like the aesthetics, the dresses and the furniture, I like the music, I like the pace… Among my favorites are old James Bond movies, Hitchcock movies, Noir movies, some Hollywood classics like Casablanca (and recently musical movies like High Society), or also simple comedies like The Pink Panther, but also French Nouvelle Vague etc. These times had a great style. Recently I was watching Midnight Lace, a wannabe Hitchcock movie with Doris Day. I liked it, and while watching it, I made some sketches, one of which turned out quite nice, I think.

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The next days I redid it to get something clean, and I made some copies and played around with the dresses. Considering the results, I should probably not become a fashion designer.

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Finally I used this to make an etching out of it, resulting in the print you see as the first picture. For this I used an old piece of metal which already had some damages that give the whole thing a vintage look. Another print of that plate is the following, where the orange color was too thick and did not properly go off the paint roller. The blue is really nice though, and I like how it fades towards the couple.

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Alone in lavender

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I am very happy about this post because it features my dear penpal Sophie :) Recently she sent me a poem she wrote. Somewhat independently of this, on the next day I made some sketches that could be used to illustrate poems. They didn’t match the tone of hers, but then I wanted to illustrate it anyway. The result you see now grew out of a doodle I did at work.


A closed geodesic on the shadow of the moon, part 2


[Listen to this while reading]

The reason why I came to this island is not important. People leave their “homes” all the time for the least of reasons. The reason why I stayed here is the moon. I have never seen a night sky like this. It is the reason why many scientists come to this island; there’s a number of telescopes on the summit. People looking for something our eyes can’t see, our bodies can’t reach, but our minds can imagine. However, I only care for the moon. A lonely heart feels with the moon rather than the sun. One cannot rely on the sun, it is always shining. But the moon hides sometimes. And then you know: you’re not alone, when you hide, too.

Conservation of Nonsenseness

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In mathematics you don’t understand things. You just get used to them.

— John von Neumann

With mathematics, most people associate some perfection, correctness, completeness, rigor, definite truth. And also dryness. And all this is true for the end result. But the way mathematics is done is completely different. It is very vague, based on strange intuitions, filled with a very creative/lively/vague/sketchy/indistinct/fuzzy language. Mathematicians talking about math is like finding your way through the dark, it means erratic discussions, often with misunderstandings between the participants, sometimes with silences in-between, with murmuring, sketching, sighing, drinking coffee, completely doubting your abilities or even life. Of course mostly standing in front of a blackboard, staring at it. And once you actually have a sound, reasonable conjecture about something, it still might be a loooooooong way to get to a rigorous proof!

PS: The above picture shows a so-called continuity equation which for instance describes the conservation of mass in some physical system.




Mohawk Eyelash

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On Saturday I was at an amazing concert, by Italian garage-punk band The Jackson Pollock. It was loud, it was dirty, it was raw, it was FUN. They were really cool, very nice, just wonderful. The girl on the drums was soooooo cute and lovely and energetic, much like the Animal of the Muppets when she was playing :) They were coming by Flixbus, with their instruments, drums, amp, and all — that’s the spirit! :)