Thursday, July 06, 2017

In museums 2 / 博物館裡 2


又去了一次歷史博物館,這次去看畢卡索展,速寫起來非常痛快!筆袋裡的筆輪番上陣,最後發現我的最愛是口紅! 

I went to National Museum of History again for the exhibition of Picasso's imaginary faces. It's certainly a luxury to imitate Picasso's works. The wild lines and bright colors are my favorites. I tried as many combinations of pens as possible, and in the end I found that I love lipsticks the most! 



        今天沒有太多人群,卻又足夠我畫圖,一切都剛剛好。

     There weren't too many people today, but enough for me to sketch. Everything was just perfect. 



        咖啡店窗外的荷花也開得正是時候,隔著窗避開炎熱的暑氣,在畫面上看起來多有生命力! 

     The lotus pond in the botanical garden is at its best. As long as I didn't have to be exposed to the summer heat, I can make it look as beautiful as possible! 

Monday, July 03, 2017

In museums / 博物館裡


和繪本班同學去歷史博物館看常玉展,老師說要拿出小冊子速寫,好久沒有在博物館裡速寫了,我不禁想起在倫敦的博物館速寫歲月。

I went to the exhibition of Sanyu in National Museum of History with my picture-book-making class. Our teacher asked us to sketch in the museum, which I hadn't done for ages. I couldn't help recalling my endless sketching sessions when studying in London. 



        我把重點放在展覽作品的記錄,雖然身邊人潮不斷,一旦專注在速寫上,感覺就像不為水流動影響的大石。常玉的線條和顏色都很迷人,而且不花太多時間即可模仿。

     I put emphasis on Sanyu's paintings. The flow of visitors was kind of disturbing in the beginning, but as I began, I felt I could be as firm as a giant rock. The lines and colors of Sanyu's works hold infinite attraction for me. Moreover, it didn't take much time to imitate. 



        速寫節束之後,我們分享各自的作品,我發現每個人的視角都不一樣,老師重在分析每件作品的結構(於是我之後也學起來),有同學則把重點放在畫作和訪客之間的關係,或者是把博物館當作整張圖的空間發揮,非常有趣。

     After the sketching session, it was time for us to share our sketches. It was fun that everyone sketched  from different perspectives. For example, the teacher analyzed the composition of each painting, which I learned later. Some drew the relationship between the artworks and the visitors, and still others thought of the space of the museum as an artwork. How nice to have such wonderful stimulation through the exchange. 



        回家後的某一天我想起八年前去巴塞隆納米羅美術館的速寫,發現當時我的視角也好不一樣啊!從在門口排隊時就開始速寫了。

     Several days later, I thought of the sketches I had done on my trip to Miro's Museum in Barcelona eight years ago. I found that I had a very different perspective back then. In fact, I started to sketch even when waiting in line to get the ticket. 



        當時的我是多麼喜歡記錄人群啊! 

     I found the crowds so irresistible at that time! 

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Market style / 菜市場時尚


去菜市場寫生,偶然發現木新市場的主流時尚風:很多婦女們帶著安全帽呢! 

When I sketch in Muxin Market, I discover accidentally the market style: You gotta wear a helmet to look "chic!" 

Monday, June 26, 2017

Those flowers / 那些花兒


我們正式進入炎熱的夏季,高溫的日子裡,我開始懷念春天的清爽和繽紛,和那些花兒。

We have officially ushered in the sweltering summer. On the sultry summer days, I can't help but miss the cool, colorful spring, and those flowers. 



        四月裡,我們帶孩子去採用來裝飾個人花環的花朵。

     In April, we invited the children to pick the flowers they would like to use for their head garlands. 



        孩子們在花園樹叢裡來來回回地跑,我好喜歡他們在陽光下奔跑的樣子。

     The kids enjoyed running back and forth in the gardens, which never failed to fascinate me when I looked at them. 



        撿了好多賞心悅目的葉子和花朵。

     The leaves and flowers were so pleasing to the eye. 



        開始花環DIY,媽媽比孩子們還興奮。

     As we began the DIY lesson, the mothers were actually more excited than their kids. 





        成品超級美麗!

     What beautiful wreaths! 





        孩子們也愛不釋手!

     The kids didn't feel like taking the garlands off their heads at all. 



        戴上花環再去戶外玩灑花的遊戲!多美好的季節和童年! 

     With the garlands on, the children couldn't wait to go outdoors to play the game of tossing petals into the air. They certainly knew how to make best use of the beauty of the spring season!

Sunday, June 25, 2017

How to have a cool summer day / 夏天裡


最好坐在木造的泰式屋子裡,什麼也不做,發呆吹風‧‧‧‧‧‧

Sit in a wooden Thai-style house, doing nothing, and then you'll feel the cool breeze...

Sunday, June 18, 2017

If I don't do it, / 不做會怎樣?


六月的植標館週六午後,我們來上豆科植物。傾盆大雨的下午,意外地來了許多孩子和媽媽,兩年前還是個孩子的柏輝這陣子都小學畢業了,這次來感覺像是要和過去說再見了。

On the rainy Saturday afternoon in June, we have a lesson on leguminous plants. It comes as a surprise that there are more children than expected on such a wet day. Our special guest is the 12-year-old Po-huei. When he came two years ago, he was still a child, and now he has graduated from elementary school. I feel he's coming this time to say goodbye not only to us but also to his childhood. 



        平常見沒什麼稀奇的阿勃勒黃花,在拆解之後原來有許多奧秘,今年來的這批孩子頗有學習的熱忱。

     The golden shower trees are in bloom now, and though the yellow flowers are commonly seen, the structure of the flowers is actually amazing. It's nice to see the kids learn with such enthusiasm. 



        雄蕊居然有分三種尺寸,雄雌蕊彎曲的線條也是為了傳宗接代設計!

     There are three sizes for the stamens. Even the curving lines of the filaments and the style are the design of nature to help the plant reproduce. 



        想不到男孩把花插到耳邊! 今天居然還有小朋友想做筆記,我好感動!

     I am amused by how the big boy wears the flower behind his ear. More interestingly, some boys take notes today, which greatly moves me! 



        接著是美麗的鳳凰花,只可惜最近雨下不斷,大美阿姨只能採到幾朵完整的花朵給小朋友們觀察。

      Next we observe the flame flowers. However, because of the continuous torrential rain, Guei-mei finds only three to four intact flowers to show to everybody. 



        雖然這陣子看到阿勃勒和鳳凰花都開了,不這麼近看哪知道花朵果實的奧秘呢?

     I see the golden shower flowers and flame flowers only from far away, but without close observations, I would miss the mysteries of their flowers and fruits. 



        就是看起來普普通通的綠豆黃豆芽也很有趣,黃豆芽還有屁味呢! 

     Even the ordinary-looking mung bean and soy bean sprouts are a lot of fun. The latter smell like farts! 



        我們也玩分組搶答,其實只是想黃豆製品,大家也都好投入! 

     We play the brainstorming game: Each group has to think of as many soy bean products as possible. See how devoted everyone is! 



        最後玩沙包,大家不亦樂乎! 

     We top off the day with the folk beanbag game. The kids enjoy it so much! 

        今年我們把活動頻率減少了,有時候做活動出門的路上也會想,如果不做多好,但每個下午結束的時候,就是會感受到一些溫暖和光亮,促使我繼續,而且在我完全不想界定教育這件事時,週六下午總是向我證明教育可以是有意義的。

     This year we have cut down on the times of the activities. On the Saturdays when there are workshops, I sometimes grumble and wonder how great it would be if there were no such thing on my way to the herbarium. But at the end of these Saturday afternoons, I feel there is always a small flame lit up in my heart, a glow of light that warms me and pushes me to continue. When I don't feel like defining the significance of education, these Saturday afternoons always prove to me that education can be fun and enjoyable. 

        活動結束之前,有個八歲男孩要我看他表演,雖然他一直失敗,我對他說:沒關係,在家練好下次再來!他要離開的時候說:謝謝你鼓勵我!有一天我們也許不再做這個活動,不做也不會少一塊肉,或許有些時候還會慶幸這樣的決定,但我會想念那些可愛純真的孩子和他們的話語。

     Before the end of the day, an eight-year-old boy asks me to watch his specially-prepared show. He keeps failing, so I tell him, "All it takes is practice. I believe you can do much better when you come next time." Before he leaves, he says to me, "Thank you for encouraging me." One day we might not go on with the activity, and it certainly won't kill me. Perhaps I might feel thankful for the decision, but I will certainly, definitely miss those lovely and innocent children and whatever they have said to me. 

Sunday, June 11, 2017

between text and illustration / 文圖之間


今年開始對自己的創作模式有一些思考,好一陣子都是從文字著手,有時寫到沒有畫面,自己也察覺不到,所以我想改變。

This year I started to have some reflection on my pattern of making a picture book. For the past few years I have written the text first, but the danger is that sometimes part of the text doesn't conjure up any visual image, which I might not be aware of.  



        自從去上了繪本課之後,得到很多刺激,例如說我又一再被提醒,所有好作品的出發點都是創作者本身要享受整個過程,那些外加的目的和野心必須先放在一邊。

     Ever since I attended the picture-making courses, I have gained much stimulation. For one thing, I am constantly reminded that I have to discard my ambition and focus on enjoying making a book.



        雖然在分享作品方面,我是個超級膽小鬼,可是看到同學們大方地把作品擺出來,懇切地和老師同儕討論,我也自我鼓勵,每次上課都不斷突破心防。

     I am a coward when it comes to sharing my works, but seeing my classmates present and share their stories with everyone in class, I also try my best do let go of my fear. 



        透過老師不斷問問題,加上我說出自己在創作上一直以來的瓶頸,我覺得好像找到前進的路。

     In trying to answer the teacher's questions and voicing the problem I have detected in creating stories, somehow I feel I have found a really good direction. 



        因為我老是在故事裡包含太多意涵,所以最後主題沒說清楚,又把故事弄得很抽象。老師說我可以從圖畫起,把抽象的文本具像化,再把圖串連起來。

     Since I've always wanted to include too much in my stories, I fail to express the themes successfully. Also, they are too abstract for children to understand. My teacher said that I can try starting from drawing pictures because that way I can give concrete images to abstract ideas. Then a story can be developed by connecting the images I have. 



        即使故事這次寫不好,我也不在意從頭再來。只要我可以學著把故事說好,一切都好說。

     Even if the drafts are a failure, I don't mind begin anew. As long as I can learn to tell a good story, every effort is worth it. 

Sunday, June 04, 2017

On a spring night / 春末的夜裡


春末的夜裡,小男孩瑞瑞和媽媽咪咪來看我,而雙胞胎哥哥在車上睡覺,瑞瑞睡不著,因為怕做惡夢。

On a spring night, Ray comes to visit me with his mom Mimi, while his twin brother sleeps in the car. Ray can't sleep because he is afraid of having nightmares. 

瑞瑞問我:「汪達阿姨,你讀一年級的時候有夢想嗎?」我搖搖頭,很可惜地說沒有。
瑞瑞說:「我想當歌手。」
咪咪鼓勵瑞瑞唱一曲。於是我們在深夜裡開了盡興的小型演唱會。
媽媽繼續說兩兄弟的趣事,例如下田體驗農耕生活時,當其他孩子雙腳深陷於泥濘當中,精力過盛的兩人追著鴉子跑。

Ray asks me, "Auntie Wanda, did you have a dream when you were in first grade?" Unfortunately, I didn't. I felt pity for not being able to give a more creative answer.
Ray goes on to say, "I want to be a singer."
Mimi encourages Ray to sing, and thus starts our late-night mini-concert.
Mimi tells me more anecdotes about the two brothers.  For example, as the other kids panicked, the boys got so carried away when experiencing farming that they started to chase after the ducks.

好寧靜又好有活力的春夜啊!

What a peaceful and energetic spring night!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Dadaocheng Wharf / 大稻埕碼頭


來去大稻埕碼頭看夕陽,與其說這裡是觀光景點,不如說是市井小民生活的場域。

Let's go to Dadaocheng Wharf for the sunset. It's more a public space for the locals than a tourist spot. 



        大家用最自在的方式放鬆,畫著畫著我也感覺像在家一樣自由。

     Everyone relaxes in their own ways. I can't help loosening up as I observe and draw how others live. 



        華燈初上,廣場上、榕樹下或廟旁的空地,紛紛成為卡拉ok歌手的舞台,排排站的塑膠椅向路人招手,邀請他們來聽一曲,還有毫不害羞的歐吉桑跳著熟練的舞步,多麼華麗的台北夜晚!

     As the sky darkens, the wharf becomes a performing stage for local singers. They can be seen on the square, next to the temples or under the banyan trees. Rows of empty plastic chairs wave to the passers-by, inviting them to be part of the show. Moreover, the music is accompanied by the sophisticated dance of middle-aged men. What a splendid way to spend an evening in Taipei! 

Monday, May 29, 2017

Good friend / 好朋友


上週的繪本課裡,當老師不斷問大家有否要分享的作品,我遲遲拿不出來,心裡勇敢和懦弱不斷交戰著,最後我安靜若無其事地走回位置上。

In the picture-book class last week, the teacher kept asking if we had any work to share with one another. Even so, my cowardice held me back, finally blowing away the last whiff of courage I had. In the end, I walked back to my seat quietly without saying or showing anything. 

        那天的課堂上,遇見認識好多年的Ada,下課之前她對我說不要害怕,她的鼓勵推了我一把,果然,老師和同學給了我許多回饋,之後我的生活看似相同,但其實一切都不一樣了。

     That day in class I happened to run into Ada, a friend I'd met years ago. Before leaving, she told me not to be afraid. Her words of encouragement made me take a huge leap. As she had predicted, I got so much helpful feedback after showing the work to the teacher and classmates. After that day, though my life appears to be the same on the outside, it has, in fact, become very different. 

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Northeast coast in the rain / 下雨的東北角


爸爸生日,我們去東北角兜兜風。沿路雨越下越大,卻感覺很痛快。

On Dad's birthday, we go for a drive along the northeast coast. Though it pours, we are not daunted by the rain at all. Instead, we've never been so determined. 



        我在車子裡寫生,我們一邊沒有目的地喃喃,而車外的釣客則無畏風雨,等著出航。

     I sketch inside the dry and cozy car. Dad and I ramble on casually. Meanwhile, despite the rain, the fishermen on the cruise are ready to sail on the sea. 



        我們駛過一個又一個灣口,來到鼻頭角(上面的筆記有錯),風景美得令人屏息,我拿起筆,車子裡都是畫筆刷在紙上的聲音。畫完了,下車吹吹冷風,撲鼻而來的海洋味是當天最美好的禮物,當然還有超級動人的海浪。

     We race on the winding road along the sea, finally arriving at Pitouchiao. The scenery is so breathtaking that I can't help taking up my pens. The car is filled with the sounds of my brushes stroking on the paper. After finishing the sketch, I get off the car to take a closer look at the seacoast. The salty smell of the sea fills my nostrils, which is the best gift of the day, apart from the fantastic sea waves. 



        之後來到南雅奇岩,石頭、浪花、雨水,絕對詩意的組合。

     Afterwards we visit Nanya rocks. What an absolutely poetic combination of rocks, waves, and rain!



        最後來到很有異國情調的和平島,超級浪漫!

     We top off the outing with a photo shot at the super romantic Hoping Island. 

        不是我的生日,但收了比生日禮物還棒的大禮!

     It's not my birthday, but it's definitely a day much better than a birthday! 

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Sketchy sketches / 速速寫


好久沒有速寫,我渴望感受日常生活的魅力,所以一早從坐公車的時候就開始我的速速寫遊戲,可能只是三十秒,或者是二十分,都充滿無限可能。

Since I haven't sketched for a long while, my whole being is packed with longings that scream for an outlet. So I decide to play the sketchy sketch game even when taking the short bus ride. Be it thirty seconds or twenty minutes, I know there are countless possibilities in the game. 



        我的雙眼看到的人事物都如此迷人,速寫當下就算龐大的公車擋住我的視野,也擋不住我的渴望。

     In my eyes, every detail is so charming and nothing, not even a gigantic bus in front of me, can stop me from recording their beauty. 



        生活始終是美麗的,只是我們常常被自己矇蔽了。

     Life is always beautiful, but we are often blind to it.