Hemispheres by Don Stewart

Hemispheres by Don Stewart

This piece was part of the 2012 Brain & Mental Health Art Show.

Every one of Don Stewart’s intriguing composite images is drawn entirely by hand, using an ordinary ballpoint pen. Each drawing begins with a pencil sketch, and a long list of possible ingredients. In a process that usually takes about a month to complete, Don thoroughly researches each subject, and carefully considers dozens of ideas and compositions before finally putting ink to paper.

The result: another complex rendering in an endless series of whimsical instruments, historic monuments, amusing machines, and brain-teasing bugs – every one designed to joggle the mind, and tickle the funny bone.

About The Artist

Don Stewart takes a humorously intellectual approach to art. The artist’s preferred medium, a holdover from his academic past, accounts for the crisp detail in his whimsical drawings. Ballpoint lines bring out tones and textures unattainable with conventional pen and ink; the black and white renderings come alive with hidden images and visual puns.

Stewart earned a bachelor’s degree in Biology & Art from Birmingham-Southern College, where he enrolled in drawing classes under Raymond McMahon and Robert Shelton as a break from a strict premedical curriculum – unaware of the impact they would eventually have on his life. Here he discovered Arcimboldo’s classic substitutional paintings, M.C. Escher’s masterful tessellations, and the ingenious composite renderings and sculptures of classmate Tom Wilkes. Stewart also experimented independently with techniques in ballpoint pen drawing – especially after the instrument was banned from Shelton’s classroom.

He continued to sketch as a hobby during medical school in Birmingham, AL and throughout his surgical internship at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. There, in addition to keeping a 24-hour call schedule, Dr. Stewart managed to win awards for short fiction and poetry, and successfully published his first two composite drawings. After a year of resident training, the pen finally proved mightier than the scalpel, and the young doctor’s creative interests gained the upper hand. He finished his internship, earned his medical license, and promptly turned his full attention to drawing.

For the past twenty-five years he has made his living as a self-styled Visual Humorist, hammering words and pictures together at the DS Art Studio Gallery in Birmingham.

The DS Art Studio Gallery
2805 Crescent Avenue
Homewood, AL 35209
1 (800) 372-7864 (Continental US Only)
1 (205) 802-4700

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