When I enrolled in this class, I thought that I knew the basics of drawing. I had taken art classes in high school, but most of the classes were just free draw for an hour a day. The teacher never really critiqued our work, and I didn’t feel like I improved, although my love for art grew over the years. After drawing by myself for so long in high school, I really thought that I had it down to an art (pun intended). However, I soon learned that I had become so accustomed to my abstract sketches and ink hatching that I had lost precision in drawing from observation. Specifically, my lines were not straight and a lot of objects would be out of proportion. Of course, I thought that when drawing something abstract, it didn’t really matter how realistic dimensions are. However, after drawing simple objects, like objects on my desk for our first study drawings, I noticed that I had trouble drawing from observation, and the little details that I had dismissed, like contour lines, proportions, composition, and values, were actually really important in making even inanimate objects come to life.
Looking back at my portfolio today, I now notice the small details that make drawings from observation realistic. For example, I never changed line weight in my first drawings. Since I was so used to hatching and letting my pencil go wild with different textures, I had so much trouble making background shading one consistent color. Sometimes a simple flat ground would look like it had indents or cracks because I didn’t know how to blend my shading. I now realize that concepts like value shading, composition, line weight, and proportions are very important to abstract art also. When you take into account all of these aspects, you make your art, abstract or realistic, more detailed and interesting for the viewer. I especially liked hearing feedback from other artists in the room. Their ideas on composition and creating narratives opened new doors for me in my drawings. I always tried to get the viewer to piece together my narrative through the title, but I discovered that simple touches, like adding a clock on a time and then changing the time from one drawing to another, can create the illusion of time passing.
In the future, I hope to incorporate more drawing from observation into my ink hatchings. I think it would be really cool to ink hatch one of the buildings on campus, especially since I already drew the building near Edens for one of our assignments. One of my drawings incorporates shading and values, line weight, and proportions in an abstract manner. I have changed the shading on this water droplet so it looks like a water droplet that has mysteriously dropped and splatted into all different directions. I especially like shadings backwards, or shading in a dark value and then erasing to create highlight areas. I hope that I can continue developing the skills that I have learned in this class to further improve my artwork. Thank you for a great semester!