Friday, February 24, 2012

observation leads to assignment

I was standing up on the parapet, trying to catch an ocean breeze (and avoid some of the biting green flies) when I did this quick sketch of the park ranger down below. We were at the Castillo de San Marcos National Park in St. Augustine, FL

Looking down on this figure presented me with all kinds of challenges, like the way the top of the foot shows in the buckled shoe, and where the shoulders met the neck (which I mostly couldn't see). My biggest challenge was figuring out how to shape the face. My brain kept getting in the way to insist that a face is an oval, but my eyes whispered that from this angle it was different. Look. Pay attention. Draw what you see. IGNORE THE BIG BOSSY BRAIN!

Overall, I was pleased with this drawing. It got many things right. 

But, as I observed it (and other sketches in my sketchbook) more, I realized that I was doing a lot of scribbling and my lines were often tentative and over-corrected. 

OBSERVATION: tentative, scribbling lines, a lazy look to many of my drawings.

From that observation, it was easy to come up with a little assignment for myself. I determined to draw several heads with very simple, certain lines. That meant looking more and drawing with a confident hand. And for me, that meant separating the BIG BOSSY BRAIN from the ever-curious and observant eyes and let my eyes direct my hand.

This is what I came up with.

I never really know what will happen in my sketchbook, ... but sometimes I absolutely love it!


Kitty Wallis said...

WOW! What a leap in your painting/drawing education you just made! I am so happy for you.
And the sketch of the guy shows your intent perception. Well Done!

Kitty Wallis said...

I meant to say intense perception.

Dewberry Fine Art said...

I love following your blog Katherine. I am inspired!