Having taken the majority of my classes as prehealth requirements, I was both excited and anxious to take a course so outside of my comfort zone. My goal in completing Drawing 101 was to form a better communication between my brain and my hand (while having fun along the way)! My post-graduation plans include attending dental school in the fall. As previously mentioned, over the past 4 years I have prepared myself for the rigorous academic aspect of dental school, however this was the first time since middle school that I worked on developing my artistic skills so necessary to the profession.
One of my biggest challenges with weekly assignments was remaining patient. Developing patience is something that I have been struggling with my whole life. I found that the best strategy for avoiding frustration was to complete assignments in 2-3 hour chunks throughout the week, rather than attempting to complete a drawing in just 1 or 2 sittings. While I continued this approach throughout the course, I found that I developed more patience and could draw for longer periods of time when working on my final drawings toward the end of the semester.
I appreciated that the structure of this course required constantly keeping up with drawing, through both our sketchbooks and larger weekly assignments. Being in the constant practice of drawing my surroundings forced me to look at seemingly everyday things on campus in a new light. As I passed by trees, I found myself admiring the unique negative space between overlapping branches. I also gained much more appreciation for the subtle details of the subjects in my drawings. Having to put an object on paper really made me focus on every curve, detail, and nuance of it. I came to appreciate the architecture, brickwork, and additional design of buildings I have previously passed hundreds of times on campus without pausing and giving the attention they deserve.
I also feel that I benefitted from seeing the drawings of students in my class on display. It was interesting and helpful to take a closer look after class and see how they chose to interpret their surroundings or photographic source material. In later classes, when we were given time to sketch, some classmates were even kind enough to sit with me and show me the exact pencil strokes and techniques they utilized in previous drawings. I then incorporated these ideas into my final drawing, shown below, which I am most proud of (the blog would not let me rotate the image in the proper orientation).
Overall, there is definitely still room for improvement in my drawings. However, it was rewarding to flip through my portfolio and realize how far I have come from our first class. I also noticed when crafting my final drawing that I have become a lot more comfortable with planning out my drawings and putting the pencil to the paper. I am excited to continue honing my skills in both my personal and professional life as I continue working with my hands and in a sense, creating art, for a living.