Thursday, August 16, 2018

The Drawing Skill Diminishes

"Draw, as much and as often as you can.
When drawing lies fallow,
the skill diminishes."
~ Gene Black

I have not kept up my drawing everyday this summer like I had planned. It seems that the older I get, the harder it is to fit everything I need to do into a 16 - 18 hour day. Regardless of other obligations, there are really no excuses. I just didn't want it bad enough, because somehow, we make time for the things that really matter, the things that we really want to do.  

Although still sketching and drawing, it is not with the same intensity or commitment that was given to "drawing everyday" for seven summers in a row. Of course, to clarify, I was not teaching and giving demos regularly, involved in the local art center and town art walk, didn't have my own art gallery or have Instagram or an online course, wasn't contributing to online communities with videos, or obligated to stay on top of several websites and facebook accounts. Phew! OK, enough of that! I'm not feeling guilty anymore ....

BUT I do want to say that my skills are NOT up to par like they were when I was sketching more. If you can, it is well worth your time and effort to draw something everyday. Here's a couple of drawings from yesterday that aren't horrible, but they took a lot more time than expected.

Don't let my example sway your dedication to study drawing! Everybody feels awkward and fumbles around with it in the beginning. Even if you can draw, but have been delinquent in doing it for a while, it can make you feel downright inadequate and uncomfortable. But that's what growth is all about! Accept the challenge and enjoy the process. If you work through it, and dedicate some time everyday (as little as 15 - 30 minutes), I assure you, that drawing will become easier and more enjoyable the more you do it. (Scrolling through my blog archives here may help get you inspired.)

Thanks So Much for Stopping By & Happy Creating!

X ♥  O

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Sketching Is Your Identity, Your Style, Your Conviction

"Sketching is almost everything.
It is the painter's identity, her style, her conviction.
The color is just a gift to the drawing."
~ F. Botero

Small figurines that you love, make great models for quick gesture drawings.
If you go through the archives here, you'll see many versions of these little guys.
You'll  never get tired of drawing your favorite things,
because when you sketch and paint what you love, it shows!

If you are strapped for time, just do one set of 2 minute gestures everyday.
You'll be surprised how much even that little bit will help!

This shows you how I set up my little model for this sketching Session.

Some Tips on Drawing two minute gestures from life.:
• When drawing small objects, it helps to get the item closer to eye level, so I set them up on a box or a large coffee can.

• It also helps to isolate the subject with a solid colored background.

• Closing one eye often helps if you are having difficulty.

• When drawing, try to keep your body and head in the same position or your view will change.

• Prop your drawing pad up at an angle. Use a Beanie Baby, or something similar.

• Squint to see large shapes as you start to draw quickly.

• Hold your pencil **In position One like a wand (**Like you were conducting an orchestra) It's the complete opposite position from **position Two  - the position we use to write our name.

Position One For Sketching
Position Two For Details

• Block in large shapes **In position One. Use the side of the pencil. Look at negative space. Make comparisons. Work fast.

• Then, if you still have time, turn the pencil to *position Two  and add a few details.

• You can see a short video on sketching gestures and how to hold your pencil here.

Follow this link for more tips on how to go about doing these quick gestures.…/in-starting-gate-and-the…  The brain processes 3D objects differently than when viewing flat, 2D reference. Drawing from photos is good practice too, but there are some real benefits to to starting off sketching studies with drawing from life!

"Sketching is like dancing. It's process as much as product.
You can turn your head off and just sort of dissolve into the now."
~ M. Crabapple

Happy Creating My Friends!

X ♥  O

Friday, June 1, 2018

DrawingEveryday / SketchingEveryday Starts Today!

"Once your drawing skills have been established and refined,
it may acceptable to trace from photographs occasionally;
to correct, fine tune or save time."
~ Sandy Sandy

I feel that tracing before you actually learn how to draw is cheating yourself out of the gift of refined artistic sight and is a detriment to your continued development as an artist. A huge part of learning to draw, is learning to really SEE. Drawing and advanced observational skills can only be developed through using them! Learning to draw, especially from life, teaches you to translate what your eyes see, into a language of two dimensional lines, values and shapes. This is why life drawing is so important; and why it has always been at the forefront in all classical art education!

It is often obvious, to those with the acquired skills, when something has been traced from a photo without a solid knowledge of 3D form. This 'insight' and ability is only acquired through educated study and practice.  In my opinion, tracing, especially when done from someone else's photo, does very little to teach drawing skills or contribute to one's long term development as an artist. 

The photograph, that someone else took, and the perspective that went into creating it, belongs to someone else; even if it was bought or is in the public domain. When tracing, no matter how much you change the colors, or what techniques you employ, it is still not truly your own art. You are not adding your own perspective into it and you are inevitably cheating yourself out of your own growth and unique vision.

I do think it is OK to trace to save time or to refine your drawing, once you are already adept in drawing skills; but it is no way to learn the essential Right Brain Shift and really start SEEING.

Everybody feels awkward and fumbles around with it in the beginning. Even if you can draw, but have been delinquent in doing it for a while, it can make you feel downright inadequate and uncomfortable. But that's what growth is all about! Accept the challenge and enjoy the process. If you work through it, and dedicate some time everyday (as little as 15 - 30 minutes), I assure you, that drawing will become easier and more enjoyable the more you do it.

I used the same grid on my photo and the drawing to help me see the shapes more easily.

I will be drawing again everyday from June - August. Why don't you give it a try? I'm sure you will agree that refining your drawing skills will open up your eyes like nothing else and really make you SEE like never before! Join our facebook group here.

"When drawing lies fallow, the skill diminishes."
"Draw, as much and as often as you can."
~ Gene Black

"As you make drawing a daily habit,
your sight will be enhanced tremendously;
your hand will become more coordinated
and your marks will be more
beautiful, spontaneous and sure."
~ Sandy Sandy

And Please Don't Forget. Time is running out. 
Don't miss this fun adventure.
Join us for
the FUNdamentals of Alcohol Ink E-Course.
Summer 2018 Session Opens June 6th

Thanks So Much for Stopping By

X ♥  O

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

A Cyclic Poem

"History is a cyclic poem 
written by Time upon 
the memories of man." 
 ~Percy B.Shelley

Alcohol Ink On Yupo Using Only Ranger's Mushroom Ink
"History is gossip well told."
~  Elbert Hubbard

Monday, August 14, 2017

Technique And Skills Absorbed

"Technique and skills must be absorbed 
and wrapped up and put away to become 
such an integral part of yourself that they 
will be revealed in your work 
without your thought."
~ Shoji Hamada

Drawing With a Brush Exercise
"Skills can be found, like lost items 
that have always belonged to you. 
If the spirit of learning is there, 
the passion of creation 
will never die." 
~ Melissa Jean

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Double Your Odds

"Every skill you acquire 
doubles your odds of success." 
~ Scott Adams
Drawing With A Brush - Control Exercise
"Artists get better by sharpening their skills 
or by acquiring new ones; they get better by learning to work, 
and by learning from their work." 
~ David Bayles,

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Searching Yesterday

"If you want to understand today, 
you have to search yesterday." 
~ Pearl Buck 

8 x 10" Alcohol Ink on Yupo

"I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge. 
That myth is more potent than history. That dreams 
are more powerful than facts. That hope always 
triumphs over experience. That laughter is the 
only cure for grief. And I believe that love 
is stronger than death."
 ~ Robert Fulghum

Friday, August 11, 2017

Distracted But Committed

“Persistence. Perfection. Patience. 
Power. Prioritize your passion. 
It keeps you sane.”
  ~ Criss Jami

I'm really distracted from drawing at the moment, all wrapped up in 
getting ready for my fast approaching  one woman show.
 I do try to keep my commitments though, so here's today's 2 min. gesture attempt.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

You Are A Rhinoceros ... Charge On!

"Your life is like a river.
Keep the water flowing
and you will be refreshing,
life-giving, clear and beautiful."
~ Scott Robert Alexander.

"You are a rhinoceros!
There is nothing you cannot tackle."
Many years ago, I read an awesome little book called:
  Rhinoceros Success
 by Scott Robert Alexander

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Some Pony Love

"All horses deserve, at least once in their lives, 
to be loved by a little girl."
~ Author Unknown

"No heaven can heaven be, 
if my horse isn't there to welcome me." 
~ Author Unknown