Day of Dialogue: The Basement Tapes

I am posting these images without a great deal of 


When working onsite, I typically work in pencil. When a drawing justifies it, I'll go back later and ink in black gouache with white corrections. That said, sometimes the situation requires that I see the pencil as the completed object. Such was the case last week, when I worked on the Day of Dialogue project with our editorial team. 

When pencil has to do the trick, I'll often scan and pump the contrast in Photoshop, quickly adding color behind the drawing layer to give the image a little body. They hold up better that way; it's sort of like printing a high-contrast version with a second color flat, like in the old days.  




The best part about the pencils is the preservation of touch and gesture. Pressure, speed and tool width all register: drawing, naked.






It's pictures and captions from here, folks. 




























































DB Dowd, illustration detail, Videographers in Emerson Auditorium, February 6, 2015.  

Dowd, illustration, Panel Discussion, Gerald Early at far right, post-keynote address–occupying his chair like an athlete between events. At the Med School event on Thursday evening, February 5.  

Dowd, illustration, Overflow Crowd as Day Winds Down, February 6, 2015. There was a drawing of a panelist in the upper left, but it (like me and–by then–the audience) was tired, so I scrubbed it, leaving the better part of the drawing.

Dowd, illustration, Chancellor Wrighton Begins the Proceeedings, February 6, 2015, Emerson Auditorium, Knight Hall. The drawing started with the slowly-filling auditorium, then suddenly shifted to the figure in the double-breasted suit. 

Dowd, illustration, Chancellor Wrighton Begins the Proceeedings, detail. The head is pretty good–better than the figure. 

Dowd, illustration, Videographers in Emerson Auditorium. This drawing started in the morning, early, with the cameras in place, accompanied by bored shooters. I returned to it later in the day, when the crowd had filled in. The heads dotting the left half of the spread provided an interesting problem. How many would be enough? 

Dowd, Videographers, detail. This guy's head–which begins to feel pretty abstract–is one of the most appealing passages on the day, for me. Economical. I'm warmed up, but not tired yet. This little element is about 2 inches tall. 

Dowd, illustration, Race is a Social Construction, a morning panel. Professor Rebecca Wanzo emerges as the dominant character. My colleague Denise Ward-Brown is at the far right. (Rebecca was spirited and nuanced; Denise provided experiential and biographical depth.) 

Dowd, detail, Race is a Social Construction, Rebecca Wanzo, nonplussed but patientish, with Maketa Wilborn at the drawing board. Rebecca works with graphic novels in her teaching and scholarship, and serves on the board of the Billy Ireland Cartoon Museum at Ohio State. It seemed appropriate, somehow, to render her as a character. And Maketa ran a marathon that day, with style and precision. 

Dowd, illustration, Discussion of Stereotypes Viewed from Behind, February 6, 2015. I could have worked on this for another half hour, happily. Wanted to draw the paisley, and the constantly shifting poses of the woman on the right and just left of the page break.