Tuesday, April 22, 2014

My Reflection on Drawing- by Stephanie Downey

I enjoyed drawing this semester for a number of reasons: the ability to experiment with different techniques, the joy of expression, and the feeling of pride in my creations. These are simply a few of the reasons that come to mind. More than anything though, I love drawing for the endless challenge it represents. I imagine that I will always feel a sense of restlessness, wanting more and more realism in my drawings, and this will make drawing a hobby that I will always pursue, as it isn’t possible to ever achieve perfection.

Though I enjoy drawing as an activity, I am particularly fond of viewing the drawings of others as an art form in its own right. After completing this course, I realized that learning more about how to draw (and coming to understand just how difficult it is) has made me appreciate the drawings of others much more. For instance, I have found it very difficult to use charcoal well and also have difficulty adding detail to drawings (such as the texture of the stone buildings in my landscape drawings of Duke or the texture of trees). After failing to achieve my desired results in these areas, I was able to better appreciate my classmates’ work, as well as the drawings below (each of which exhibits a use of texture/ charcoal that I appreciate because I have yet to achieve such mastery):

As far as the course itself is concerned, I have truly enjoyed getting to see how creative my classmates are. This is especially true with the last few assignments, in which we were allowed to draw from photographs and create a fictional drawing. I also enjoyed the emphasis that the class placed upon incorporating the Duke landscape into our work. As a graduating senior, I have found that I rarely took the time to enjoy the beauty of the campus until it was almost too late. However, drawing the campus forced me to stop and appreciate what was around me- an experience I will cherish when I think back on my time at Duke. 

Lastly, I truly enjoyed taking drawing at Duke during my final semester as an undergraduate student. It was a great way to gain a creative skill that I can carry with me into the real world. I plan to continue drawing to release stress, a strategy I believe will prove to be useful once I enter the working world. It will be nice to be able to return to my apartment after a long day and unplug, unwind, and release my creativity. Overall, drawing at Duke has been a great experience, and it has made me want to continue drawing and perhaps take additional art classes in the future.

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