Wednesday, 29 October 2014

We interrupt this blog for Carol Marine "Daily Painting"

I have been feeling really sorry for myself -  my knee is killing, my washing machine is leaking and my tooth just cracked.  I just went to the drugstore to get a knee support and as I was leaving there was someone in a wheelchair and I was thinking I didn't really have anything to complain about and I could hear my brother's words "just suck it up".

Well things have  turned around.  My physio called and said she had a cancellation, the repairman came on time and the bill was much lower than I expected and my dentist's line  was busy.

To add to my good feelings my copy of Carol Marine's book Daily Painting  came a week before it is supposed to be released. I am really excited to get this book so I am going to put  "Keys to drawing" aside for  just a bit and go through this one.

Chapter one is about  her background and the advantages of doing a small daily painting.  She gives many reasons but the one that resonated the most with me is that you improve quickly.  I noticed that when I did the 30 in 30 paint challenge.  I learnt a lot and if one painting  didn't work out, well just move on to a new one the following day. Other artists discuss why they paint daily.

Chapter two is about her materials: easels, surfaces, palettes  and lighting.  I liked her tip of cutting a tennis ball in half and using the inside to wash her brushes instead of her hands.  One thing I always have is old tennis balls, the advantage of having a Golden Retriever.

Chapter three is about subjects: lots of suggestions about still lifes, landscapes real life vs photographs.  It sounds like I am just zipping though this book but I really am enjoying all the pictures from other artists and her generosity.  Which brings us to the first exercise - one or more objects on a plain colour background.  I could only find black and pink paper so I used that.  On the bright side, I found an old ink drawing I love, 3 brand new tubes or paint and an empty sketch book, I really have to clean up. I did this painting of weights.
S. Charto

 They are much more fun to paint than to lift. 


Tuesday, 28 October 2014

And now for something completely different

This exercise is not from the book but it is fun to do.  I am a member of an art group that meets every Wednesday and we are having a guest artist give a workshop about abstraction.  I don't enjoy painting abstracts but I am willing to try.  We had some  homework to do  before the workshop. She asked us to draw multiples of the same thing..  Being the procrastinator that I am, I of course waited until Tuesday night to do it.  I really haven't changed from elementary school.
  Here's are my pictures:
Can you guess they are hangers? Not too tough a question, but it was fun  - try it. 

Sunday, 26 October 2014

I see you

Today's exercise is to draw your eyes but not straight on.  Try doing a 3/4 view, this way you are forced to see the differences between the both eyes and not draw what you think you know.
Here are hints
  1. Do it front lit not back lit.  If your head is back lit everything is in shadow
  2. Wash off your mascara that you have rubbed so that you can actually see your eyes 
Now excuse me  I have to go wash my face

Friday, 24 October 2014

Is it real or is it....

The point of this exercise is to highlight the difference between what we think we know and reality.  It is pretty easy to do.

  1. Draw what you think a pepper looks like using your imagination
  2. Draw a real pepper 
I just happened to have a red pepper rotting away in my fridge.  I really have to stop wasting food. An apple or a pear would be just as suitable..  I think anything would work that wasn't too complicated and you could visualize it in your head.
When I first drew this I thought it looked okay but really doesn't it look like a weird apple? Hmm. 

Then I drew it really looking - do they  look like peppers to you?

Monday, 20 October 2014

How do you get to Carnegie Hall?

I think I may be dating myself by this joke - how do you get to Carnegie Hall - practice, practice practice.

Bert, I am taking the liberty of calling him by his first name, suggested drawing things with an unusual shape or not in  the position you are used to.  This is to get you out of the habit of  drawing what you think you know and instead drawing by actually looking at it.  He suggested a book of matches which really dates him because I can't remember the last time I had one.  I don't think restaurants give them out anymore, which probably ruined a lot of mystery stories but I digress.

Can you figure out what this is?
Or does is this version a little clearer?

It's a ladle.  Don't worry I'm not insulted I think you can guess from these pictures I am not working until I get it perfect or pretending to be great - this is a blog for me to learn and I hope you will too.
What do you think this is

Does this one help?

I'll just tell you - it is a tape dispenser.  This is a great exercise just draw things in an unusual position so you really have to look - try it you have nothing to lose.

Thursday, 16 October 2014

The Devil finds work for idle hands

Working on hands now.
Exercise :
Draw your hand from an unusual view point -  straight on. His instructions were to hold your hand 12 inches in front of you - looking more at the hand than at the paper.  Pretend you don't know you are looking at a hand but at something new. It is okay to redraw lines because that makes the drawing more interesting. Don't worry if it doesn't look like a hand - it is hard to get it right away.
After I did his exercise I did a whole bunch of other unusual positions

The next one was tough.  From my view point, I could only see the tip of my pinky but I still kept drawing it.  I knew a pinky is longer so I was drawing what I knew not what I saw.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Enough shoes

Enough with the shoes - what woman ever says that - but I have had enough.  Today is my last one. Notice the holes on the side I must be the last person in the world that still has some continuous form paper from, well let's just a really, really long time ago.  I have enjoyed doing these more once I stopped worrying about the time.  I think that doing drawings like these are a great way to warm up.  On to hands tomorrow.

Monday, 6 October 2014

Well back to the drawing board

I had to take a little time off from blogging and painting, because we helped my daughter move.  I am getting too old to drag boxes up and down stairs, but I suppose it keeps us young. It was kind of nice that she didn't have internet and we actually had to talk to each other.  
We had a long drive from Toronto, where she lives to Montreal where I do.  The thing about long drives is there is plenty of time to sketch.  I am not fast enough to do trees as we pass them but I do little drawings of my husband's hands, the car, my shoes etc.

Exercise 1 A
The first exercise in the book is to make a drawing of your crossed feet using a pencil or pen.  He said allow 1/2 hour, at least.  Well I never got  beyond 10 minutes and I don't even think I got that far.  I kept thinking of varicose veins or blood clots and I got tired of crossing my legs, so I went and started drawing keys.

The drawing were 5, 8 and 10 minutes.  I find it pathetic that I was observing so closely and left out one key.   It is also pathetic that my attention span is so short.  Eight minutes feels like an eternity and I think I spend more time looking at the timer than my drawing.  I don't want to move on yet and I am going to repeat the exercise tomorrow.