Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Ashley's Journey in Drawing

I never saw myself as a patient person, but when I draw, I surprise myself because I take all the time in the world. I obsess over every last detail, and I'm not afraid to get into the nitty gritty and color out ever last brick of Page Auditorium just to get that awesome texture down. And I guess, that isn't the best thing to do, especially when you have 4 other classes to take care of. It's quite hard being an artist at Duke because I don't want to sacrifice the quality of my artwork because of time constraints. I learned so much in the three weeks that I spent working on the Drawing from Observation and Photographs project.

I realized that it's quite difficult laying out everything you see in a landscape. One turn of the head and oop! Wow, there's another tree in my view now! I've learned to piece things out with landscapes-- find a focal point in the scene and build it from there.

My first attempt at the observational drawing piece. Clearly, I had no idea where to start, prominent things...uhm... The foreground: flowers, but I didn't even want to begin on doing that complex mixture/texture of flowers. The midground: bench, well, I could only see like...half of the bench anyway. (someone also uprooted the bench the next day so when I came back, IT WAS GONE!)
The background: trees, pond...yikes. no.

Attempt number two: up in a tree. (something I've ALWAYS wanted to do ever since I was a kid) As I was composing my piece this time I had to do some intense scrutinizing before I even started on anything. But, I managed to get something down. I didn't see how important texture was to a piece until I started doing observational drawing. I've always stuck with quite stylistic approaches, so that allowed me to ignore many aspects of realistic drawing. But in order to get the piece to look as true to life as possible, I had to resort to shading and lining in every hair in the fur of the squirrel I was drawing, each crevasse of the tree trunk that I was sitting in, especially those annoying bricks that on the chapel. (annoying, but worth it)

Fusing two scenes together and straying from just looking and drawing to creating something that can pass as realistic is another aspect of drawing that I found extremely rewarding and something that I'm quite grateful that we explored in this class. I'm also very satisfied with how much liberty this class has given me in pursuing all the art projects that I've ever wanted to draw, especially my final piece: the fairy wonderland. (title soon to be figured out)

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