After taking a six-month break, it’s nice to see that all I learned during my first year of learning has settled into my subconscious. Now, rather than worrying that a drawing will suck, I just look at my subject, study its lines, and put it down on paper. Sometimes, it does suck. But I don’t worry so much anymore.
Started drawing a couple years ago. Had always wanted to but never thought I could. I used to watch with envy as others put pen to page and re-created what they saw in front of them.
Truth was: I couldn’t draw because I never did. Wasn’t till I was willing to do it all wrong, to make mistakes and embarrass myself, that I was able to see how easily those mistakes can be corrected.
Of course, I’m no master artist. I’m an amateur at best, one who does it for the love of doing it. And what do I love most? When I draw, my mind goes mute; words are abandoned, which prohibits self-criticism.
I just look at a thing and pay close attention, noticing its lines and shapes and shadows. There’s no judgment involved, just a little love as I bring the image to life on a lined piece of paper.
Time to try and sketch some people. Of course, this is not at all as intentionally goofy as her original photo, but it does capture a bit of her good-natured humor — something I wish there was a hella lot more of here in oh-so-serious San Francisco.
It’s good to get away, to drive a couple hours north, to rent a room with a big ranch yard, a big orchard sky, a big yellow moon rising over hilltops, barbed-wire fencing glinting by the road.
A rooster cocks at dawn, calling out to crickets and frogs, the ground all green this early spring with March rains behind us.
I think of other artists, slipping away at dawn to the fields, setting up easels, writing their visions with color and line.
I join them now, clumsy with supplies, learning to keep the sun off my neck, to pencil-sketch quickly, to gently dab a sepia line, to stick with dry watercolor sticks, the texture and touch of the sketchbook pages.
Dry pigments without any water perfectly quench the still thirsty earth.