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Hell IS HERE

 

@DRAWNBYAGGIE is the official abstract artist for the Don't... series. Losing herself to the reflection of human nature through her art of complex shapes and symbolism, she's ventured into the dark realm of Don't.... And with Gray and his  love of abstract art whispering in her ear... She's diving into Hell with... Antidote: Don't... Book 2, and -

 "My God. All of their shapes are broken...!"

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"HELL IS EMPTY AND ALL THE DEVILS ARE... HERE."

- William Shakespeare

Where in the hell to start...?

 

THE FOCUS OF the first Main Antidote work in this progress art clip is firstly about the nervous ‘O’ of its Tic-Tac-Toe position done directly on the board. It’s always such a sweaty-palm moment adding those red shapes to the drawing - they are the focus of the series and have to be done right, while also trusting the intuitive process that it will be what it will be.

Gray wasn't there...

HERE I ALSO zoom in the shift in the circular shapes representing Gray, Jan, Jack and.. Martin. Gray is at the very top, looking above them all in a protective stance that he always wants to take, but isn't always able to. On the right we have Jan, on the left Martin and just beneath him - Jack. All of their shapes (with the exception of Martin) are broken, and with jagged edges - that to me represents the events in Antidote. Martin’s shape is ‘hugging’ Jack, because here we find out why Martin exists and the ends of his shape are the only ones that are ‘blunt’ - that’s because we are first led to believe that Martin wasn’t directly affected by what happened to Jack and Jan in Antidote, so he is less ‘jagged’ here, even though we know from later in the novels how hurt he was by this as well.

THE MUSIC ACCOMPANYING this video is "Believer" by Imagine Dragons. There is so much in the lyrics as well as well as the upbeat music that speaks to me how all of them: Jack, Jan, Gray, were fighting through all that went on in Antidote, but mostly this song represents me, and my own feelings in it all. And how Jack L. Pyke has the power to make the believer out of you.

ONLY REAL MEN GET DIRTY

IN THE SECOND Main Antidote video here, I focus on showing off the centre of the Tic Tac Toe’s ‘O’: how the straighter lines at the top, above Gray’s circle, start moving into wavier lines - all of this to represent how we go from calm to very disturbed in Antidote. The lines get a double meaning here: the top ‘straight’ part of Gray’s lines that ‘move’ into Jack and Jan represent the steady growing relationship between them before the Antidote kidnap, rape and reconditioning. 

IT'S MEANT TO symbolise that steadiness’ under Gray’s ‘care’ and ‘love’ for them both. Yet, as we move further down ‘into Antidote’, lines are disturbed because Jan and Jack are no longer in Gray’s care, they are in the black nightmare of sharp edges, hurt and terror...

YOU MIGHT ALSO notice how the ‘links’ that ‘hold’ the lines together going from Gray’s into Jan, Jack and Martin are sometimes connecting smoothly, ‘lovingly’ and sometimes - specifically where they go from Gray into Martin’s golden silver circle: they have a ‘loop’ around Martin. That’s meant to show how Gray despises Martin at this point and can’t bare to touch him again, yet because Martin is part of Jack - he has to, but he does it reluctantly, hence to ‘loop’ rather than a smooth link.

NEXT TO TAKE the central focus area is Jack’s Necklace. This is one of the more ‘realistic’ parts of my abstract drawings. It’s because I really wanted to show off the contrasts between the black rope, silver beads and the double crosses: black and silver. The necklace plays such a significant part throughout the novels and this was my way of honouring Jack L. Pyke’s writing and attention to detail.

MERCEDES ....

THE LAST OF the Main Antidote set of drawing videos focus on the finishing touches, where the almost finished drawing comes into view. I also wanted to zoom in the creation process of the most important part of my interpretation of Jack’s Necklace (and the most nerve-wracking part so far!). I needed to show two parts of my thinking process here: the significance of the Necklace, hence it taking a central place on the drawing; and a way to show it’s ‘breaking’ to signify more than the physical break. The part where Jack H says to Halliday in Breakdown ‘how some things are meant to be kept broken’; how Gray keeps it for all those years; how Jack brings it to the final scene with Gray. Because of all of these things and more, the ‘breaking’ had to be an uncomfortable one. And that’s why I chose the technique you see in the video - where a drop of paint is blown out to create an unpredictable pattern, with a splash trajectory that is impossible to control.

It was extremely uncomfortable to me as an artist who loves detail and sharp precision, but had to do this uncontrolled technique to symbolise the deeper feelings behind the Necklace, its breaking and its general significance.

THE...Unsent RANSOM NOTE

THE FINAL PART of the video also shows the work in progress of glueing together the ‘quote of the drawing’. Every piece of the Nine has a chosen memorable quote from the novel that I felt compelled to glue onto the drawing using cut out letters. The process reminds me of those kidnap letters, where the villain cuts out letters from a newspaper and glues them on a sheet of paper with instructions for ransom. It has a sad contradiction in Antidote, how the ransom letter for Jack and Jan was never meant to be. My cut out and glued pieces signify a few things: they symbolise the patience and skill required to write such gorgeous novels as the Don’t… series; the love and care it needs to glue the pieces in straight lines, just as I would imagine the ‘work behind the scenes’ requires to write a novel; and the reflection behind choosing the quotes that will permanently stay on the piece - just like all the easter eggs and quotes Jack L. Pyke drops all over her books for us, the readers, to find, devour and later contemplate upon.

MUSIC IN THIS final Antidote piece also has deep significance to me personally - it’s "Going Home" by Ásgeir. I wanted to show the more hidden meaning behind this final video - while I focus on the symbolism behind the kidnap and hurt of Jan and Jack in the previous videos, this last one is all about Gray’s hurt: how he couldn’t save them; what that did to him. How Jack’s distrust in the end, where he accuses Gray of being the orchestrator of the kidnap and rape, how all of that shattered Gray. So much so that in the end, he called the Master’s Circle safe word to make it all stop. How Ed was ready to take Gray home. I am not originally from Great Britain, but my love for this place comes via the love I have for all her sights, scents, tastes and the endless history. So when I first drove up to Caernarfon in Wales, the place where Gray is from, all I could think were the blue Welsh mountains looming ahead. It’s the view that captivates my attention even now, whenever I head that way. And so I really felt Gray’s ‘call for home’ in that moment, that need to get back and stay hidden to lick wounds. The song by Ásgeir, the lyrics and the melancholic feel was the best representation of what I felt when thinking about Gray’s hurt.

MUSIC DISCLAIMER: the artwork depicted is for non-commercial usage. Any music used in these videos was used to aid the creative drawing process. Full credit to all artists  mentioned! 

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