Time and troubles slip away

HOUSTON – In school, Robbie Pipkin drew geometric shapes on notebook paper.
Now, the 39-year-old uses poster board instead of notebook paper, but he has to be careful.
“When I start one, they consume my time. I don’t have time to work on anything else,” he said. “I spent all winter on one.”
He said he starts by marking off a grid “that’s perfect to the millimeter,” then uses Uni-ball pens to draw arrowheads, circles and diamonds. The finished pieces resemble Native American art.
“One of these, I can sit there 12 or 15 hours and just get up and go to the bathroom and get up and get something to eat and get right back to it,” he said. “You kind of get into a trance after you do it 10 or 12 hours.
“You forget everything. Legs don’t hurt. You don’t think about your problems. You get lost in it.”
About 15 of his creations were destroyed in a fire, and he said, “it liked to kill me. It hurt me more than losing anything else.”
He’s got no interest in selling his originals, but he’s considered having prints made.
The posters serve as Pipkin’s time capsules. He can connect a moment in his life to a particular arrowhead.
“There are a lot of memories there,” he said. “I put myself into it.”

M. Scott Morris/NEMS Daily Journal

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