Sunday, September 27, 2009

I need to take my own advice more often…

At least when it comes to drawing exercises. If I’m sketching regularly I can easily slip right into drawing; I don’t wrestle much, the drawing seems to draw itself.

But when I’ve been away from my sketchpad or journal, facing a block, or approaching a tough subject, I need to take the advice I give others. Go back to basics: gesture and contour drawing exercises. Remember those from school?

I find that gesture drawing is a great way to loosen up. I have a tendency to draw from the wrist, which is great for detail studies, which I love. Drawing with the whole arm, from the shoulder, makes me connect with my subject in a dynamic, unfettered way. Because it’s the drawing in the framework of an exercise, I also let go of any expectations.

Freedom to draw without expectation is…well, freeing. And my detailed study afterwards seems to flow much better.

I enjoyed the gesture drawing in pencil so much that I tried one in watercolor, just to see what it would be like. I was more pleased with that one than the more detailed study I did afterwards!