Monday, November 13, 2006
It's funny sometimes to hear people that 'think' they interested in taking my class ask "do you have to draw...I hate drawing". Like my old prof Greg used to say...they think the computer has a make cool button but really it's just a $4,000 paperweight...and in the wrong hands this is definitely true...I say if you do poor work by hand you will probably do poor work on the computer (and it has mostly held true)...not being able to be at least proficient with drawing skills has always come back to bite people in the rear. Not that people can't learn, but there is definitely a needed focus and amount of effort that those lacking 'natural ability' aren't usually willing to put in.
I have never known a serious artist (commercial or otherwise) that hasn't had the same advice...keep a sketchbook. Draw like no one is looking (although people will always flock to you when they see you with a sketchbook in a public setting). But the only way to get better is to draw. The only way to stay sharp is to draw. The only way to keep your mind attuned to quality and attention to detail is to draw. The only way to save the endangered three legged otter of Norway is to draw. Thank goodness I attend a LOT of meetings and the like that gives me the chance to study folks or just throw something out to ease my mind. A good bit of advice I learned recently is to get a good sketchbook and actually use it like a scrapbook. Since I often draw on whatever is within my reach, (bulletins, notebook paper, napkins, etc.) this has proved invaluable. Often some of my favorite sketches are 2 or 3 minute studies that I did, working loosely and trying to capture the person or thing before they move on...And don't worry about being 'judged' in your sketchbook. This is you time...no pressure...relax and get lost in your sketchbook!