"There is no excellent beauty that hath not some strangeness in the proportion" Francis Bacon 1561-1626

Sunday, 13 April 2008

Leaf of the Day: Schefflera and the Genius Of Robert Hooke

Today is Saturday, the weather is lovely and we walked to the main centre of Winter Park which is a street lined with cafes and shops and wine bars. It has a distinct European feel, you can still find independently run shops and down a small alley there is .. joy of joys... a delightful small secondhand bookshop run by Evelyn Walters Petit, Brandywine Books.

It is a shop that has a complete mixture of old and newish and Evelyn plays some cool jazz while you browse. But the excitement of a secondhand bookshop is that frisson of anticipation as you step in, an anticipation of finding something unusual, something you didn't even know you wanted five minutes earlier and something you may never have known existed at all. It has to be a black day in my life that I fail to find something fascinating and desirable in a secondhand bookshop.

I also love the books with those scholarly pencil notes in the margin, with others' names written on the flyleaf, newspaper clippings, cinema tickets and shopping lists. It's hard to get those in Borders or Waterstones...so we did come back with a few, including Lisa Jardine's biography of Robert Hooke.
Hooke was a brilliant irascible man, who argued with Newton, worked with Christoper Wren to rebuild London after the Great Fire, was an inventor, architect and engineer, kept himself going with laudanum and cannabis and amongst other things was the author of "Micrographia", a startling illustrated volume of engravings published in 1665 based on Hooke's own drawings of natural phenomena seen under a microscope. Here is one of them.














and another based on his drawings of fossils.















It will be an interesting read.

Caught up with all this literature, sun and my first swim in the pool here I haven't had much time for drawing but after yesterday's post I have been thinking about simplicity, shape and monochrome. Here is a big, (too big for the A4 scanner) simple pen and ink drawing of a handsome and shapely Schefflera leaf.
___________________________________________

Schefflera leaf.


No comments: