Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Creative Drawing - Week 1 - Now that was tough!


Okay, I survived the first day and boy was it hard work.

Who’d have thought “art” would be work!  (hehehehe - to all my art buddies I really have new found respect for the “work” you all put into your art)

So...in this Creative Drawing course the object is to get in the groove with “sketching” - to map out a plan based on an accurate portrayal of what we see before us.

In this first class, objects (fruits and bottles) were place on a table in the centre of the room and based on what we saw we were to pick a few of the items to sketch..loose lines nothing definitive. 

That would be no defined lines or attempts at shadowing - just loose line sketching. (what part about that didn't I get)

Here’s where we learn that Jenny is NOT good at following instructions. (This might help explain why I work for myself) 

Class started at 12:30 and at 1:00 we were sketching - suffice it to say although we did receive instructions on what not to do, we weren’t bogged down with what to do...does that make sense! 

Anyway, when the first grouping of objects had been arranged I jumped in and started sketching the green bottle and some fruit. (eager little beaver!)

Then came the critiquing.

I was the first on the chopping block. (the price of sitting at the front) The instructor would, one by one, sit in our chairs and look at the objects from our vantage point to see if we were accurately sketching what we saw.

Did I mention I am thick-skinned...well, let me mention it here! Okay, I took it like a woman, a man would have dealt with it by stepping out back.

But...it was all good and valid and very useful...and justified! I was way off on some of the placement of the fruit - who’d have thought…!  

An hour later the table, with the objects, was turned so we’d all have a different perspective, and by then I was getting in the sketching groove. (aka “the rut”) 

This go-around I took my time...yes, that was one of the “to do” things our instructor, Georgia Youngs, talked to us about when we first arrived. Don’t rush in the early stages - so with that in mind I went to town.

Here is what I saw on the table…


And here is what I sketched...(it needed a ton of tweaking and I had to go buy a second eraser already)


Good news is I can only get better. (so I’m told!)

What about you, have you had to learn something that was harder than you first thought?
(and not necessarily art related)

 Cheers,
  Jenny 

32 comments:

  1. It's interesting to read about this art class Jenny and how you struggled and realised it was tougher than you had thought. Personally I think your drawing is awesome, I mean sure it's not perfect but in my eyes nothing in art is perfect. You've done an awesome job with it, hopefully things get even better.

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    1. Thanks for your support and interest in my art, Matthew. It can only get better, that's the thing I have to remember...this was, after all, Day One! :)

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  2. A bit difficult to say because I suppose we tend to forget about the struggles with things we have already learned whereas we avoid others that seem difficult for us. To stick by one's self-employed resolutions is often so much harder than one believes, of course.
    Btw it's an interesting feature of your blog to pose questions to your readers ...

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    1. Thanks for weighing in on my question.
      Since art is subjective I was having a hard time with the critique but soon realized this was an art "lesson". I was there to learn something and have an opportunity to expand my mind and my talents. To that end I just let go of my pride - once I did I was surprised how much more I was able to absorb from what the instructor had said.

      As to the feature of "posing a question", I do this because when writing a post I wonder how this experience might be written from a reader's view point.

      By asking a question at the end I find a reader is more likely to share what feelings or thoughts this post has evoked during the process of reading it.

      Thanks for stopping by, Martin - you add a wonderful dimension to the conversation! :)

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  3. Looks like you're compensating with the placement of the items to keep it all in the center of the picture. I would've done that too, it looks better. Maybe that's not the point though?

    Also, it's very... phallic

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    1. You have a good eye, Drake - I have bunched everything up, much to the frustration of the instructor (and me). Getting a handle on placement is not so easy - in fact I found it decidedly hard.

      I was not "listening" to the instructions which were to use light lines and to take the time to make sure the placement of the objects accurately matched what was on the table.

      Oh well...this was just Day One - let's see where it goes.

      And, very observant as to the "image". I do appreciate an eye that see more than the actual object in the work. I think in most art one can make a parallel to the physical/sexual plane and in this case if one is looking for that one would not have to look far. Good call!

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  4. i like your drawing i think it looks great and i learned yesterday via a small child that coloring a tree purple is very acceptable and so is coloring outside the lines so not really hard lesson but fun
    Come Say HI

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    1. Yes, a purple tree is very acceptable indeed! I just wish I had that option yesterday! (grin)

      Thanks for stopping by and adding a smile with your comment. :)

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  5. I give you major kudos for taking criticism, constructive or otherwise, so well. I like to think I'm thick-skinned but I'm not always able to be when it comes to something I've created. Well done, Jenny!

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    1. "So well" is a bit of a stretch...just "okay" is more like it! But, I am thick-skinned so it all worked out well. Besides, one can't argue with the truth, and after the critiquing I was able to objectively take it all in and this second attempt was better - still in need of lots of work - but heading in the right direction.

      On to Week Two...I will be practicing all week, that's for sure! :)

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    2. I hope you share week two with us...

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    3. Aren't you sweet...here I thought one week would be enough of my "art" talent for any sane follower. :)

      Of course, truth is...I'm going to share each and every detail of each and every class each and every week...until each and every one of you thinks..."Jenny really needs a life"...hahahahaha!

      With a big silly grin and lots of giggles... :)

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  6. Hallo little eager beaver! Well, at least you survived your first class, Looks as if you have made a good start with your sketching. Well done!
    I'm not very good at following instructions either!

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    1. That's me, a little EB! Yes, the first class is done and I lived to blog about it! A good sign.

      I feel really good about this first day and my attempts at sketching what I saw before me...trick now is to "listen" and actually "see" what's before me and really get the placement down pat!

      I'm glad you're a fellow rebel! We have to stick together. :)

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  7. Drawing! Drawing is something I think is harder than it seems!

    Congratulations on getting through your first week. It will get easier. You just have to go out and draw all the time. It's a practice thing. Unfortunately.

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    1. Thanks Em! You're so right...practice is the key. To that end, I've been out to visit my daughter and had a practice session with her. Given this field is her profession I figure go to the source. She still attends weekly life drawing (a bit different from objects on a table) but she shared some thoughts about how to see things.

      Since I plan on improving I am practicing! :)

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  8. Art isn't easy, but it can bring great satisfaction. Stick with it. I studied art at college and at Emily Carr U, and I still do it as a hobby, so I appreciate the feelings. If you sew, you have to look at design. Look at any objects or a life model the same way - where are the main lines? btw - Nice photo at the top of your page!

    Good luck with your classes!

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    1. Hi D.G.Hudson - looks like we hail from the same neck of the world (I visited your profile). Too cool. Thanks for the "line" tip. Just had a sketching session with my daughter, a Cap U animation grad (2 and 3D) last night - great fun and learned a ton.

      Thanks for stopping by and giving a nod about the photo...I love walking in the Sunset Beach area...not as busy as many parts of the Wall. (and dog friendly) :)

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  9. Mom said to tell you that she is very glad that you were challenged in the first class. And I think she also said something about discussing "homework" with you?? I can't wait until you have to sketch animals - don't forget, I'm always available to pose for you if you get tired of sketching Lucky.

    Love, Eira

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    1. You're so cute! I can hardly wait to learn how to draw "hair" then for sure you are one the "must draw". But in the meantime I may come over and practice sketching you minus hairy details! Practice, practice, practice...that's what I need.

      Thanks for visiting me! :)

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  10. This is awesome! Kudos to you for taking a Creative Drawing course! Sounds like a great beginning to a journey. :)

    I studied art for several years in college and the toughest (most dreaded) part was the critique rounds until I realized that when the critique was valid and justified (useful not critical or petty) that this was the best way to learn- and to "see" more effectively. Did you get to critique others too, or just the teacher? Having to think through a valid critique of someone else's work is really helpful too (and difficult!).

    I look forward to reading about coming weeks! Sketch on :)

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    1. In fact I'm writing about it on the side...keeping a journal, so I can look back and hopefully see the forward momentum and the eventual (here's hoping) success with learning how to "see" the world as an artist.

      Only the teacher critiqued us this class - however, look out on Week Two - apparently we will each have a "show and tell" time. We will "show" what we've done and then the class will "tell" us what they think.

      The objective of this class is to accurately show objects on a table in real time, as they really appear. Critiquing that should be different than giving an opinion if we "like" something just based on how we "feel" about it. I will bear that in mind and take nothing personally.

      When I am critiqued, based on the outcome of an objective I can be very removed from it personally and see the critique as a means of helping me improve a skill. (I keep telling myself this...I'm sure eventually I'll believe myself...I'm not a fan of being critiqued, but then, who is?)

      Thanks for stopping by and taking a look! :)

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  11. Looks like you are on the right track there! With your creativity I have no doubt you will be brilliant at this stuff. Provided of course the instructor doesn't have to spank you too often to make you slow down and listen. (grin)

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    1. "Brilliant" might be a far stretch...I'm looking for "not bad", heck I'll even stretch and say I could see myself going for "decent", but "brilliant" - you are toooooooo sweet!

      Mind you, right about now my close friend, ego, is looking for a little stroking! My tough chick exterior is sporting few blue spots - and this was just Week One.

      Listening...what's that!? Hahahaha. My daughter laughed when I told her what was asked for and then saw what I had done. She added her two shiny pennies worth by stressing the importance of listening to instructions. During our practice session, last night, I got an earful.

      My ears are still ringing...and this second cup of coffee is not helping one bit. :)

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  12. Way to go Jenny! Way to stretch the creative wings!!

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    1. I have to grow creative wings first before I can stretch them, dear Lisa. But...here's hoping I do better in the listening department next week. That might be a good place to start.

      Thanks for the words of encouragement...coming from you, they mean a lot! :)

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  13. Delicious still lifes, I love colored bottles.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Leovi. At one point, given the time of day, I was ready to take a piece of fruit as a snack. I'll be better prepared next time...both with a snack and with listening the instructor.

      I found trying to sketch the shapes very difficult, particularly the length of the bottle's neck.

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  14. If that is your first still life drawing I think you are doing very well. I think the pear is well drawn and it "sits" nicely (visual weight) on the drapery. The bottle is pretty good too. I think you should throw away the eraser though. Those early (light) lines will add character to your work.

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    1. The last time I did any still life drawing was over thirty years ago. (back in high school and college)

      Thanks for stopping by, Lorik, and giving such positive feedback - let's see how I do in Week 2 - I have been practicing!

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  15. I know I am late to the party, please forgive me. I am going to follow this eagerly as not only do I know you have a passion for art of all kinds but you are very talented yourself.
    I am thinking of doing a drawing class next year so this will also give me some inpiration.
    I think you have done a great job with week one.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Mynx - late is good, at least to all the parties I go to!

      I'm getting ready for my second class today - bit anxious, but I'm sure it will be a wonderful day of learning while creating some art! :)

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Thanks for dropping by and sharing your thoughts.

I'd give you a penny for them, but alas we just snuffed it out. Yup...gone!
It's all about the nickel now...so at this rate you can leave 5 thoughts!

Cheers, Jenny

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