Drawing on Glass at The American Book Center

This weekend I got to draw on the huge glass window of The American Book Center in the center of Amsterdam, the one that displays all my Discovery in Comics-books and especially Religion: a Discovery in Comics, which I will be in conversation about this Thursday with Stijn Schenk of soon-to-be-launched graphic journalism site Drawing The Times.

I was quite nervous as I showed up at the store. I have never before drawn on glass and did not know what to expect. I am used to drawing while people are watching, but somehow doing it on a store window with all my books in it felt like a huge, scary exposure.

To be somewhat prepared, control freak as I am, I had drawn out my plans on paper and came armed with this:

abc-before-after

I was especially worried about the execution of the row of people at the bottom – could I reach it? How comfortably could I draw, hunched on a small strip of window sill…? At the store, it turned out I didn’t have to. There was a huge bin of empty cardboard boxes I could help myself to, and plenty of space in their store room, so I decided to paint this bit on cardboard.

All in all, it took me 3 exciting hours to fill the window as I had planned. The actual glass painting I did on the outside, with acrylic paint, on a positively balmy autumn afternoon with cheerful tourists passing by and even a few fans turning up. Stijn Schenk, who will ask me all kinds of questions about my work on Thursday at the ABC Treehouse, helped out and shot this delightful impression:

 

If you’re in Amsterdam and pass through the center, please check it out, it will be up for almost two weeks. And if you’re in Amsterdam and free on Thursday night, why not drop by at the ABC Treehouse (in the Voetboogstraat, almost across from the store) to hear me and Stijn talk…? I promise I’ll try to make it interesting.

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Author: Margreet de Heer

Dutch graphic novelist, known for her educational series 'A Discovery in Comics', featuring 'Philosophy', 'Science' and 'Religion'. In the works: 'World Domination' and 'Love'. Margreet lives and works in Amsterdam with her artistic husband Yiri and their black cat Toto.

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