Sunday, September 07, 2008
Sketches and Thinking
This week last week was the first time I've done some observational sketching in a while, months in fact. It was the second week of school and I am trying to immerse myself back down deep into deep art-nutrient the waters of learning at PAFA. This summer was full, chock full of art, yet not hardly any of it personal as I had hoped. This summer I did a lot of drawing, but it was almost all drawing from invention, which is a very,very different way of working than what the thrust of drawing is at PAFA for the most part. So it was a bit of a rusty gate this week, getting back into the swing of it early Wednesday morning in Scott Noel's class.
It always takes me a bit to sort of shift the mental transmission over as it were when I get back into school. I have to slow down and not rush off drawing which I am so used to doing in comics or storyboards. When I do them I'm pulling form my memory banks and literally years of practice. And many decisions are already made for me, size, sometimes designs, medium, etc. But drawing from observation is really a different animal and I will admit, I am pretty self-conscious about not wanting any bleed-through of my commercial career into what I do at school. I know that's impossible too, as I can't deny that part of myself either.
Scott had us start with a drawing of the set-up he had arranged before class, a round table on top of a square table with a vase; basic shapes. the first drawing he had us just go at it as we wanted and my brain was pretty fuzzy i have to admit. Drawing standing up, no coffee yet, made me a bit blurry that early as my freelancer lifestyle had to drastically shift to student life.
The next drawing was basically a contour line drawing, done freehand again, standing up at the easel. I was getting a bit more awake by now. As always Scott is such a dynamo and elegant speaker, half preacher and half art professor.
The next drawing is from my uninstructed class in Still Life with Michael Gallagher. Mike wanted us to do at least five thumbnail sketched from the various set-ups in the still life room. I did more than five as there were so many interesting set-ups. next week I'll take one of these and develop it into a drawing. The thumbnail is something I am so familiar with and use every day while doing either storyboards and comics. It's funny, some students seem to really resist doing them and I can never understand that because it is such an integral part of the thinking process as an artist--it's essential!
So this week will be the first full week with all of my classes and my second year as a student, though I'm still finishing up the last of my first year classes. I will be trying to use my brain to think even more about how I want to use what I am learning and to what purpose it will all lead.