1 januari 2015

Compost has a face

In the course of 2014 I did an experiment with compost drawings... drawings made with the compost Hendrik, my big friend and husband, made from grasses and hay. I dried the compost a bit and used it on a white board and some plastic, trying to manipulate it into an image.

The drawings are not for keeps. They will be wiped out and be used to grow plants. What remains is a photograph.

The making of Face

The making of... Montes

Making landscapes is about light. Here the light was playing with the plastic on where my drawing should be. So when I had the drawing finished I found my self trying to make a good picture.
With this compost material I had some difficulty making gray tones. The material appeared to be not so 'dusty'. Good compost though, but therefore the drawing got high contrasts.

Two trees

Since I had trouble with the previous landscape drawing the gray tones, I sifted the compost. The plastic is never completely flat, so the compost added to its shapes. 

The making of... woman

A sea in black and white

To make things difficult... I wondered, if I would make a sea in compost, on the lumpy plastic, the result could be a sea. Well, to me it is...

Woman lost her job

This time I skipped the plastic. So, this one is with compost on board. So far so good :)

The green that you see on the photographs is the shade of the greenhouse plastic around the greenhouse.

Double minded man

Face in profile with sieved compost. Skipped the plastic here also.

The singer

Good that I skipped the plastic.

Our cat

Our cat has a camouflage and looks like the rocks of the Alentejo. Or just like compost, as you can see. When I walk by her I sometimes don't see her. But she sees me and greets me with an 'imbrrr'. Then she gets a caress. We are big friends.




Tried a sea again. Now without the plastic, so I can manipulate the compost like I want, not bothered by plastic wrinkles.

Casa no lago

Casa no lago... house at the lake. Bare mountains with grasses and herbs, flourishing in many colors in spring, dry and ocher in summer, black in autumn, green again in winter. Year after year.


Someone asked me if I could 'do Marilyn'. Like many others have 'done her' before and keep on 'doing her' still. I am a bit naive, so I said: "Yes fun". But after all it was not.
Now I have 'done' something that looks like some actress 'doing Marilyn'. This is what is left of her... people 'doing her'. What is the matter with us, that we 'do people'? She, for example, has spend a lifetime 'doing herself'...
She was a good brand. And she still is. Until we are 'done with her'.
Please don't ask me again. let me go back to earth... sorry... to compost.

Man with glasses

In tried to make a portrait of Hendrik by heart. All these drawings with compost I make unexampled, just by heart. For Marilyn I had a picture and got quite fed up with copying. So, because I know Hendrik more years then I don't know him, I thought I knew him so well that I could draw him just as I know him. But...
"This is not me." Hendrik said and that is true. And he could tell me what was wrong. "My eyebrows have hair in the middle he said. This is my frustration all my life. And I don't have an upper lip. Also an other frustration... Don't you know me by now?"
This again says something about the difficulties you come across while making portraits. People are always frustrated about something of themselves. But for me this is my Hendrik.

First steps

Sometimes, when this compost of grasses comes fresh from the composting process, it feels so sticky, that I think it could be used as clay. But fortunately for the compost it cannot. Because compost is compost and clay is clay.

Against the wind

Cap and wrap


Love at first site

They met when they where small kids... these carrots.


Chased from the greenhouse... in my new working area on the terrace, I made my last face with compost...

Compost has a face... video with Hendrik van Rijn on Guitar with his composition 'A Drawing'.



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