"Saint First" by Bill Svoboda

"Saint First" by Bill Svoboda

Saint Paul has so many remarkable buildings ... from the Capital to the Cathedral, but for some reason, whenever I think about Saint Paul, my mind goes to the one building that captures my attention: the First National Bank building.

I feel like it has something to do with the big "1st" at the top. 

So when I decided to draw the First National Bank building, I wanted to draw it in a way that captured both the weight (and complexity) of the structure of the building, compared to the simplicity at the top.

I thought about all of the lines that are below the "1st" at the top, and how those lines form the base of the structure - and since the building actually has so many ornate features, I wanted it to feel heavier as the viewer looked at it.

Since the building is a light-colored building and it features darker windows, I wanted there to be a stark contrast ... the dark had to feel a lot darker ... but it couldn't just be solid black ... so I used a mix of cross hatching strokes to create the depth of darkness, while moving with the structure of the building at an angle to make the building stand out from the canvas.

The detailed cross hatching complimented the simplicity of the "1st" on top, creating a natural tension for the viewer as their are drawn to the top, seeking relief with the gentle white space in the "1st."

I hope this drawing finds it's way to a place in your house, condo, apartment or office where you seek peace amidst the busyness.  Where the 1st at top can be a guide to the simpler things in a complicated world - and where the white space to the right can provide you with the margin to dream and think of your next idea.

In architecture, as in life, complexity is often found right beside complexity.

It's up to us to find the margin between.

I hope you enjoy Saint First.
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