Daniel Zalkus, “Charcoal & Whisky”

Front cover of artists book “Charcoal & Whisky”

Table of contents, plus the Glenfiddich deer statue

Whisky tasting

The Still House

The Cooperage


Daniel Zalkus (Forest Park, IL)

Charcoal & Whisky
Charcoal on paper. Digital color.
Edition of 500
48 pages

My main focus as an artist is with drawing, filtered through an awareness of three critical components: composition, line and shape. Another key aspect is the location that I’m working in. Drawing “on the spot” allows me to capture the unique time and place of a specific environment. A location determined not only by the visual, but equally by an awareness of condition, be it the sounds of a place or the weather when I am there. Direct drawing like this provides a nuance that can’t be captured any other way, not even in a photograph. While locations can be recorded using photos, it’s the artists’ viewpoint and reaction to the environment that makes it unique. I feel that this absorption into the space is a central concern of my work.

In the work I utilize a variety of line with the intent to generate an interaction between oppositions. Straight, curved and fluid lines that contrast to make each section of the drawing unique yet a part of the whole. My goal is for that unified “field” of unique elements to provide an interesting and engaging final composition.

Charcoal & Whisky is a book containing a series of drawings that document the whisky-making process and was created during my time as a Glenfiddich Artist in Residence. For four months I lived on the distillery grounds in Dufftown, Scotland and directly drew the workers as they repaired the casks, bottled the spirits and gave tours of the location.

The book is full color, 9×12 in size, 48 pages and a limited edition of 500. Each copy is signed and numbered.