DWP: August 10

Yesterday was Tove Jansson’s birthday, so today’s prompt celebrates her life and love. Jansson based many of her Moomin characters on real people: Too-ticky is inspired by her long-term girlfriend, Snufkin is based on an ex-boyfriend, and an early drawing of what became Moomintroll started as an insulting portrayal of Kant. I’ve also been re-reading Griffyn Gilligan’s beautiful project Imaginary Animal Adoption Planet so this is also inspired by his work.

Today’s prompt is to doodle an imaginary animal/creature/character and write an accompanying piece about how this creature inhabits the world. Start doodling without planning it – take your pen for a walk and don’t try to draw anything – just see what marks emerge. Any kind of squiggley blob at all is absolutely right – just give it some eyes and it’ll come to life. You might also be inspired like Tove to think about someone you love (or loathe) while you doodle and see if something of them appears in the creature. Then imagine it in the world and write about that. You could try writing as the creature, or observing the creature, but some idea of sensory experience and allowing some of its inner motivation to emerge will help (Griffyn is great for this).

My response – I drew a little snarky fuzz-ball and it turned out to be my overheated, too humid, middle-class irritation about loud teenage boys. I enjoyed giving it a face and then giving it permission to naff off.

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