The Sketchbook Project is a collection of sketchbooks from a global community of artists that will be collected together sent on tour then permanently housed in the Brooklyn Art Library. Also a limited edition book containing examples of all the participants work will be made.
My theme that I was randomly given is ‘Time traveler’. I intend to use the sketchbook to explore ideas related to time travel from the perspective of a time traveling man and his cat. Initially I just started drawing a tortoise because some can live for over 200 years and the easiest way to travel in time is forwards at the same speed as everyone else. Then having realised cheap or early science fiction movies sometimes used reptiles as dinosaurs I placed a tiem machine on its head. The time traveler himself is almost a cross between perhaps the first incarnation of Dr.Who and the H.G Wells ‘time traveler’ from his book The Time Machine (1985). A kind of mad 19C inventor, a bit clownlike definitely eccentric. I wanted him to have a companion, so the idea came for a cat, nonchantly strolling off as the machine spurts out fumes and threatens an explosion.
The idea of a time traveling cat contains many lovely possibilities. My first thought was due to my enduring love of dinosaurs, the connection between dinosaurs and birds is well documented now. A recent series on the BBC – Planet Dinosaur – highlighted how many dinosaurs are believed to have had feathers and evolved eventually into modern day birds. Many were cat sized or smaller such as Microraptor, a four winged dinosaur who lived in trees 120 million years ago. What would a modern cat think?
You can see some clips from episode 2: Feathered Dragons here
Early research into time travel itself have been surprising and very useful. It seems to be agreed that time travel into the future is possible. Whereas time travel into the past is a bit more iffy and poses a lot more difficult questions. tbc