Sunday, May 23, 2010

New Lesson

Ever wonder why the things you try don't turn out so well the first time around? Ever notice that the more you work with something, the easier it gets? Ever notice that the more you study the something you are working on the better you get at what it is you are doing? Life seems to work the same way that art works as well. You struggle, struggle; work; work...bad outcomes. You keep on struggling and working for more bad outcomes. Finally, instead of giving up when it is painful, you try to do it because of sheer frustration and stubborness.
This happened to me at Calloway Gardens this past Friday while I was painting with my friend Brenda. She wanted to paint the Pioneer Log Cabin. I was just along for the ride, so I sat down and started to draw. OH MY GOSH! We started at 10am and at 2:30pm, I left without a painting but with a drawing.
I became so uncomfortable with the prospect of drawing the log cabin that every thing I tried, seemed to look whacky. Perspective is a horrible concept to wrap your mind and hand around when out in the field. I have had enough lessons, thank you Cindy Mask and others to at least know what I should be doing and that is MEASURING, establishing a base unit and going from there. But, do you think that I did that at first? NO! It was after 2 or 3 failed attempts that I decided to do it the way I was taught that I finally found myself with a drawing that was coming together! I could not believe what I was doing.
Well, I liked what I was doing so much, I abandoned the idea of painting and dragged out my Rapidograph pen and filled in pencil lines with beautiful opaque, waterproof india ink! I had the best time. I was cheering myself on, talking to myself and having a good but tiring time.
My picture is submitted to the world to see. Okay, don't get excited, it is primitive, but it is a start and a new lesson for me. I keep hearing in my head, work at drawing, work at drawing, you will paint much better if you do. That is the constant mantra of all painting instructors. There is no shortcut in art and boys and girls, it works that way in life as well.
There is a reason for discomfort in your life. It tells you there is a lesson attached. Running away from the discomfort takes you away from the pain, but you will constantly have to confront it again and again until you start to work on the lesson. Don't fear the lesson...start to work.
Here is my drawing and a louzy cell phone image of the pioneer cabin.