Many years ago, I was lucky enough to win a fellowship residency at Ragdale Artist’s Retreat in Lake Forest, Illinois. I don’t remember what novel I was working on while I was there, but I do have vivid, lasting memories of my two week stay. Ragdale was where I discovered bagels, and came across a news article that would become the plot inspiration for my first published Street Stories novel, Painted Black.
I also felt, for possibly the first time, like a real writer. This was because I was surrounded by talented, established writers, artists and composers who accepted me into their fold as one of them and made me realize I not only could be–I was.
One of these people was Patricia Glee Smith, an artist living in Italy who is a Facebook friend of mine. Recently, she posted a link to some of her Yemen etchings that I would like to share with you. Please click through the link below and see more of her wonderful work.
I worked for 5 years as expedition artist for the Italian Archaeological Team in the Yemen. While I was there, I recorded, in ink drawings, the beautiful and fragile architecture in several areas of the country. Fearing that many buildings might not survive, I began a sort of typology, making as many drawings as I could. At home, I re-drew them onto copper plates, etched and printed them on my press. I consider this an unfinished work, and hope to continue with more drawings on site one day.