Saturday, April 21, 2018

Thoughts on Drawing - Joanna Fan

As a graduating senior in her last semester, I took this class because I wanted to explore something new. As a science person all my life, I really wanted to explore the arts and creativity world, although I knew I probably wouldn't be very good at drawing because that's why I chose to focus on dealing with numbers at the first place anyways (half-jokingly).

Looking back, I do not regret this decision at all, although drawing has been a lot more difficult than expected. When I went to the art supplies shop at the beginning of the semester to buy supplies for this class, the helper at the store mistakenly gave me charcoal pencils for normal ones. As a result, I was very confused by the hardness and texture of my "pencil" for the first few classes, until Professor Fick pointed out to me a few classes later that I was using charcoal pencils. That pretty much summed up my experience with this drawing class - I tried, although sometimes confused, but overall very proud.

I think my major struggle with this course is that I find it very difficult to convert what is in my mind to something on paper. I'm able to draft a very detailed plan in my head with all the desired angels and shapes, but I often fail to deliver the same level of accuracy to paper. As a result, my final works often look frustratingly cartoony. I honestly think that I would appreciate more training in drawing smaller objects and easier landscapes before moving on to the last few major assignments at the end of the semester. But at the same time, I understand that we only have a very limited time in one semester, and people come in with different levels of experience. Although this class seems pretty hard to catch up with for a complete novice like me, I'm sure that many of my classmates had no problem keeping up with the progress at all. So one suggestion for Duke would be offering more drawing classes for students in different levels.

In conclusion, although I'm nowhere close to a decent drawer, I am proud that I was able to step out of my comfort zone and try something new. Drawing shapes on a drawing board is a very different experience from calculating cash flows on Excel spreadsheets, but I have thoroughly enjoyed the process. I'm not sure if I will have an opportunity to take a drawing class again after graduation, but I will keep drawing as a hobby. I may be confused and frustrated during the day, but I know I will be very proud and regretless at the end.

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