Thursday, February 25, 2016

Being a Student

It's harder than I thought it would be.  I'm not used to having so much free time, or at least so much time that I should be filling with useful things.  Plus, drawing is hard work.  I actually woke up in the middle of the night stressed out about what I should practice on this week.  Our assignment was "do a pen and ink drawing" and the professor wants us to draw from life rather than pictures, so I spent some time wandering around my tiny townhouse looking for something interesting to try to draw. 

I found a shell on the back porch from a recent beach walk and then set up a light on it to get a little more clear light and shadow going and then blanked out as I stared at my white sheet of paper.  Got going, finally, and was shocked at how awful it felt to try controlling the brush and not getting it to work the way I wanted.  I miss the wishy-washy watercolor messes I usually make.

Alas, I walked away from the table dissatisfied after an hour at work and decided I'd try again today.  The table is ready and I'm now sitting at the computer ignoring it!  haaaaaa

We did some work on portraits for the last couple of weeks.  Here's part of one that was going on a mid-tone charcoal background.  I don't have a finished version because my professor likes to teach by working on the actual piece so it came out looking completely different.  I suppose I learned something by watching him, but now I have a drawing of a face that isn't really mine...my drawing or my face.

I've done quite a few faces in my life, with lots of lessons from wonderful artists like Jane Davenport, Tamara Laporte, and Dina Wakley.  Apparently, though, I'm not focusing enough on the forms, so now I feel like I'm starting over and it's a little disheartening.  I know that's what I asked for when I signed up for school...a challenge to learn new things...but it's still not very fun sometimes.

This is what our classroom setup looks like:

Since class only meets once a week for three and half hours, we spend a lot of time working at one specific drawing.  I'm not accustomed to spending that much time looking at one thing, so that's a challenge, but it's teaching me to focus and keep working even when I think I'm done with something.  Maybe that's why my chick is frowning in the picture.  haaaaaa

I'm going to go back to the drawing board, literally, today and try my hand at the ink and brush again.  Might get some of my colored ink out just because I can.

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Charleston, SC, United States
I'm a retiree/artist/student who makes things. It's a nice kind of lifestyle!

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