Coronavirus Drawing Days Part 2: Exquisite Corpse

I have been thinking a lot about the game Exquisite Corpse, as popularized by the Surrealists. Here’s an article about it from MOMA:

The idea is that you draw or write on a portion of a piece of paper, and then fold it so that the next “player” cannot see what you have drawn. Then they write the next sentence in the story, or draw the torso of the creature or portrait you are working on together. Then they fold the paper, and hand it either to a third player or back to you, a third part is drawn or written, then the whole thing is unfolded to see what kind of craziness happened on the page. I think you could do this for fun totally by yourself, by making three at a time, folding them, then closing your eyes and picking one to draw into. Or you could find a like minded person and have a postal service game–you mail yours, they draw and mail it back, etc. Then you could post them on IG, or send me one to see!

In the cartooning class I have been taking (with the inimitable Josh Bayer at the 92Y), we did not play this game, but he had us combine or alter these old drawings he found. We copied some part of the drawing to learn something from them (in this case, that shading the leg or arm further from the viewer makes a lot of space in a picture suddenly and magically), and then add something to the drawings to make them our own. Here’s what I did. I think it will be my Holiday card this year. It has been a sufficeintly strange enough year I don’t think anyone will bat an eye:

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