End of week 1 of art homework…

I made it out into the yard today to look at the little silver plants that have popped up all over the place.  When the weeds aren’t there, these guys come.  They’re really very simple-appearing:  silver spade-shaped leaves in a whorl, surrounding a central rosette of tiny blossoms.  I’m thinking they’re one of the benefits of having deer in the backyard.

Because of the shapes and orientations of the leaves, I’m thinking it’s safe to generalize out to many of the plants I’ve drawn, and say:  plants with flat leaves feel relatively easy to me.  At least, when they aren’t chrysanthemum leaves, or something!  (Toothy.)  After all, leaves are essentially 2-D, so far as visual representation is concerned.  Fruits are harder.

I picked up a Kiku apple today, specifically so that I could try and draw it.  I think I ate part of one of these recently, and it tasted eerily like dried sweetened pineapple?  Anyway, 🙂 this one is goldish pink, and has those little vertical striations that run in a mottled form, all the way around the body of the apple.  I think the blossom end is really the most interesting part, though — probably because the stem is missing.  Someone left a sticker there, seeming to apologize for it.  😉

I’ve wanted to try and render an apple in colored pencil and/or watercolor pencil and/or watercolors.  I should have plenty of opportunity for that, given that I need to be working on drawing as a homework assignment for about 30 minutes each day.  I’m ramping up to it:  today it was more like 15 minutes of drawing, and it’s been like that for the past few days — when I actually got brave enough to draw at all.  It’s hard enough for me to get up the nerve to do it in the first place:  fear of failure and all that.  But I have to draw new things in order to get out of my rut of “what I can draw well.”  To draw new things implies drawing new things poorly at first.  Or, maybe, “beginner-style” is a better way to put it.

My professor loves working on the challenge of this (what she calls “process” and seeing the gap between the imagined and the created), and I’m hoping that maybe some of her zest can rub off on me.  After all, if one could turn out photorealistic art all the time, it would basically be like being a human version of Adobe Illustrator…which isn’t that valuable, because Illustrator can do it vastly more economically.  Maybe it’s kind of like what must have happened with portrait painting at the advent of photography.

I tried drawing a different apple last night — I think it was a Gala — and found that my hand-eye coordination isn’t quite as great as I’d hoped, which I’m thinking is part of the reasoning behind having us draw every day.  I still need to learn to visualize the entire space taken up by the form, not just trace an outline without reference to the rest of the shape.

I’m also pretty sure that my teacher is having us start out with compressed charcoal because it’s vastly less intimidating than any of the finer/tighter media, including pencils and fineliners.  It’s really messy, but that’s just basically a given when working with charcoal.  I suppose the fun part of it might happen with chalk pastels, but the kind I tried out at school — which I really loved — was of an unspecified source.  The NuPastels that I have are both really dusty and still coated with some kind of lacquer which prevents them from getting all over one’s hands.  While that lacquer is on there, though, there’s no way to tell if the chalk pastel which gave vibrant, smooth color was a used NuPastel or something different.

I just looked it up, and the color I tested is similar to one which ~ I think I will have to get, so no posting the mystery item at this time.

I should pack up my things to get them ready to go by tomorrow.  My day starts at 6 AM, meaning I should set my alarm for 5:45, plan to get up at 6, plan to be ready by 7 and out by 7:15, and in class by 8.  I’ve been late both days for my first early-morning class, which I do not really enjoy.

If I get to bed by 9:30, I should have a solid 8 hours of rest.

Oddly enough, I’ve been feeling more energized on waking, even after waking up at 6 AM.  Maybe it’s because I’m getting to bed earlier?  I dunno.

And guess what?  I just realized that I forgot to do one of my assignments!  This should be quick, though…


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Haru ("Codey") is a third-year Master's student in Library and Information Science, hoping to find a way to fuse their desire to make the world a better place and to finance their art.

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