A-to-Z Challenge, (late) Day 7: Gloomcore

While the week overall actually moved pretty quickly, yesterday felt like it lasted about ten years.  It wasn’t a bad day, nor an extraordinary day in any way – just a Friday, when I’ve been greatly anticipating the weekend.  

I’ve been trying to not obsess over the horrific state of the house, instead simply reminding myself and reaffirming to myself the promise that I will get it all done on Sunday (and it’s doable, too; I’ve started from worse and gotten it done in a day, so long as I’m alone and motivated).

Instead, I’m choosing to celebrate those things I have accomplished instead of lamenting those that I haven’t.  So, yesterday I: completed (but didn’t post!) my A-to-Z entry, caught up on Finnish lessons, read a few chapters of a book, made a meal plan and a grocery list, and wrote up a plan of action for Sunday, and today I’m going to the library, grocery pick-up, and visiting my mom now that we are post-Covid and testing negative again.  

There, that looks a lot better than “didn’t clean the house.”  Let’s go with that.


Today’s aesthetic is: Gloomcore.

This is one hundred percent my aesthetic at the moment.  It actually fits quite well with something I’ve been pondering over as a sort of companion to the thing I’m working on right now, which, fortuitously, would also likely fit into the Gloomcore aesthetic.

From the Aesthetics wiki:

Gloomcore is an aesthetic inspired by the tranquil forests and foggy beaches of the pacific northwest, and obscure hobbies and interests. The aim is to appreciate the quiet through dim surroundings. Those who take a liking to such genre tend to find beauty in cloudy skies, foggy coastlines and tall, endless, green forests. Gloomcore folks love all things odd and otherworldly…

I love rainy days.  This is not exactly a secret – in college, one of my greatest loves was rainy days when campus was nearly dead and I had long stretches between classes.  I would take slow, meandering walks through the trees, walk across the quad and admire the glow of the windows from the dorms and the campus center, and ultimately stake out a seat in an empty carrol at the library, facing the massive floor-to-ceiling windows on the first floor.  Everything was muted grey and green and brown, and it was beautiful.

As I got older, my brother and I used to venture out more frequently on rainy day walks, down by the mills and the man-made falls, up by the Castle and the Gatehouse, and through the old walking trails behind the hospital.  It was there that we’d clamber over downed trees covered in moss and walk by eerie patches of monotropa uniflora (Ghost Pipes – which I fell head over heels for an which I am incorporating into my current drawing).

I guess what I’m saying was choosing today’s aesthetic was not difficult for me.

I’m picturing a very elegant woman – I say woman, but her skin is a silver gray, and her head is crowned by mushrooms, growing at varying heights.  I’m not an expert on mushrooms – I like the “mushroom aesthetic,” as in I like depictions of mushrooms in art, but I’m not sure what variety I want to incorporate into this piece yet; it will depend on the overall vibe, I think, if I want something stouter or longer or with a pop of color.  Mushrooms TBD, I suppose.  Anyway, her face is angled towards us, but really it’s angled so she can glance at the bird on her shoulder, a stern barn owl, its face cheated slightly toward us, but looking more sharply off to the right.  Her eyes are heavy-lidded, half closed; you can see the ghost of a pupil and iris, but her eyes are milky and mostly colorless.  Her hair is a stark white (I will have to work to make this contrast satisfyingly with her skin), and she is draped not in clothing, but in thick blankets of moss and ivy.

I feel like I would like to add more detail, though I’m also considering the framing of the scene; part of me would like a wider, full-body scene, and part of me would like for it to be more of a close up, to really focus on the detail s of her face, of the owl, of the mushrooms, etc. Given that I’m not drawing this piece, like, tomorrow, I don’t have to have it figured out just yet, but I will eventually. Whether this is in my Top Five for this month or not, I actually expect that it’s a piece I will be working on regardless — it’s just too good of a companion for the piece I’m working on now.


So, I finally tripped up and fell a day behind — not for lack of work! I actually wrote all but this closer yesterday (I tweaked the intro before posting this morning, obviously), but last night we had our “family sleepover” (now that Kira and I are no longer contagious), and posting got lost in the shuffle. I’ll probably post today’s either today or tomorrow to be fully reset by Monday.

I’m at my parents’ house today, and Bear is currently happily playing with the neighbor children, so I am going to take this opportunity for coffee, conversation, and some down time. Cheers.

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