Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Medium: Pencils 2H, 2B, B and H


Enbrethiliel said...


These peach pits are nice. =) They seem like a detail of a larger work. I didn't comment earlier because that pineapple kept making eyes at me. =P

Oh, did I ever tell you the Philippine myth about the pineapple?

Paul Stilwell said...

Thank you! You must tell me this myth - please. Does it have anything to do with alligators? I think somebody might have told me this myth before. But maybe I'm just projecting.

"They seem like a detail of a larger work."

If you look at the bottom right corner of the pineapple drawing, you will see the out-of-focus (because of the camera) peach pit - the one sitting in the crescent moon. It is the same one in the top left of this one. All those pits were present while drawing the pineapple one. Two set-ups, bumping into each other.

Enbrethiliel said...


It's more of a mini-myth, really. Like the Greek myths about how we got certain trees, flowers or animals, except these ones have no temperamental gods.

Once upon a time (Forgive the fairy tale opening!), there lived a mother and a daughter she had named Pinang. The mother was very hardworking, but Pinang was absentminded and lazy. Just when the mother thought she had found a job even Pinang wouldn't mess up--watching the porridge to make sure it didn't burn. But the village children were having such a good time playing outside the hut that day that Pinang ran out to join them and completely forgot about the porridge. It burned so badly that even the pot had to be thrown out. The mother was very upset and frustrated, but she didn't know what to do.

The next day, the mother fell ill and Pinang had to do all the household chores herself. She didn't last five minutes at a time without waking her mother to ask where so-and-so was stored or where she could find such-and-such. What made it worse was that the things were often in plain sight and Pinang was just too lazy to look for them properly. Finally, the mother snapped, "Pinang, I wish you had as many eyes as you need to see everything around you and to stop bothering me!"

Pinang did not return to her mother's bedside again that day--or that night--or the next day. By that time, the mother was a little better, and she started looking all over the village for her daughter; but nobody had seen Pinang. She seemed to have just vanished.

A few weeks later, the mother noticed a strange new plant growing in her backyard. She took care of it, watering and tending it every day, to see whether it would bear any fruit. And when the fruit came, the first thing she noticed was that it was covered with eyes. That was when she knew that her hasty wish had come true and that her daughter now had all the eyes she needed to see everything around her and to stop bothering her mother.

(It's not the happiest story/mini-myth in the world, but everyone I've told it to so far seems to think it's hilarious. It might be because I remind them of Pinang. Thankfully, my own mother doesn't make hasty wishes. She is more likely to say, "Look with your eyes, not with your mouth!" . . . Oh, by the way, the Filipino word for pineapple is pinya, which, of course, we get from Pinang.)

Captcha is "foodice"! =P

Paul Stilwell said...

Thank you! :) For some reason my mind's eye wants to see Pinang *choosing* to be turned into a pineapple, which if propagated, could feed the family with delectable sweetness.

BTW, do you know about cutting the top off a pineapple and growing it?

Enbrethiliel said...


That story is easily rewritten to reflect your vision of Pinang! It's not fun to be the one who messes up all the time, especially when everyone around you is so competent. Pinang's own "usefulness" might have been in her sweetness (with a hint of tartness, for personality), but it's easy to undervalue that. We can argue that the storytellers undervalue it all the time. Yet if Pinang really had been irredeemably lazy and absent-minded, then why is the pineapple such a popular fruit?

There is another Philippine myth about the durian, possibly the worst-smelling fruit in the world. (I want to dare you to find one and draw it. While it would be an interesting exercise to get all the spines right, you'd have to wear a gas mask or something just to get it done. =P) It grew out of the grave of a tribe's beloved princess--someone who was very gentle, sweet and wonderful, but also kind of ugly. Nobody even wanted to approach the tree until the land was hit by a terrible famine. Only when they were desperate did they try the smelly fruit . . . which turned out to be delicious! They totally survived the famine and named the fruit after the late Princess Duri.

Making the pineapple primarily about its eyes is like making the durian primarily about its smell.

PS -- Yes, I knew that about pineapples, although I've never had an opportunity to try it!

PPS -- Your blog is getting flirtatious. Captcha is "kisseme"! LOL!!!

Paul Stilwell said...

Oh Lord, the durian. Won't go there. Won't draw that. The closest I've been to eating it is touching the inner fruit with my lips and though the sweetness was beckoning I just could not get past the smell.

The myth about it sounds like it might be historically true!

My blog is flirtatious as a rule. :)