Back to the Basics: Drawing

So far my experience with Skillshare has been a blast! I’ve been learning all kinds of new watercolor techniques, even learned about the awesome that is liquid watercolor, and gained a few muses and art friends.

But so far I’ve only been taking classes on painting. I attempted an illustration course, but got bored and went back to splashing around.

And then I found The Art & Science of Drawing by Brent Eviston. It’s an 8-week course with five classes per week, and it’s all about drawing.

But Lina, don’t you already know how to draw?

Well, sure, I can draw a decent tree, and if I really put my mind to it I can scribble out a cityscape, but I know I’ve definitely learned some bad habits in my self-taught journey. Brent Eviston is a master artist, and has been teaching for twenty or so years, so I definitely knew there was something I could learn from his course.

And boy have I been learning.

Being a Skillshare course, I was able to take the first two weeks in half a day. We started with the basic of basics: how to hold a pencil.  Then we practiced circles, ovals, and straight lines. We learned about expressive drawing. We moved on to volumetric shapes.

Week three was much more difficult for me than the first two weeks, and so I took my time over the course of a few days. And now I’m finally on week 4. We’re drawing organic shapes and learning about perspective. Soon we’ll learn about shading, measuring techniques, and color.

So, is it helping?

I knew that improving my drawing skill would definitely improve my painting skills. But I wasn’t able to put that to the test until yesterday, when we were meant to draw some form of produce. I went with a pear. I did my homework assignment, and then I got out the watercolor paper.

I could already see how my painting was improving by knowing the three-dimensional shapes of my pear, and the way it takes up space. I sketched with a green pencil to make it more fun. Then I splashed on the paint.

A week ago, my pears would have been two-dimensional and probably outlined in black pen. Yesterday, my pears appeared to pop off the page. They’re not the greatest in pear-painting, I’m sure, but I am definitely proud of them. And I definitely see the improvement.

I plan on going all the way to week 8 of this course, and then I hope to take Eviston’s newer course: Figure Drawing.

Perhaps my fading love of illustration will be rekindled with new possibilities.

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#Limitless Project Week One

A little over a week ago, I wrote about my New Year’s Resolution of not limiting myself in 2019. This “freedom” mentality led to my newest 365 project, #limitless.

Every day I have decided to just go with my flow. Whether I wanted to paint with watercolors, or even just sketch all day with a pencil, I wouldn’t hold myself back with nagging, existential questions. I haven’t decided yet if I’m going to start giving myself monthly themes, as I’m not sure if it’s counter-intuitive to the whole idea. But I’m definitely open to giving it a try at least once.

Now that the first week of this project is complete, I think I can safely say that I’m going to learn a ton this year. Not necessarily in skill–though I do plan to learn some new skills!–but in letting myself go, and just being the artist my heart wants me to be. Continue reading “#Limitless Project Week One”

Why You should Keep a Pocket Sketchbook

A few weeks ago I was wandering the art aisle of a well-known store that rhymes with small tart, and I saw the a tiny little 4×5 sketchbook for a couple bucks. I’d been needing a small sketchbook to doodle in while on car rides and sitting in waiting rooms, so I grabbed it and decided to keep it in my purse.

Weird thing is, I didn’t realize how necessary that sketchbook would become. Continue reading “Why You should Keep a Pocket Sketchbook”

How Inktober 2018 Changed Me as an Artist

Wow! October flew by! I’m not surprised. Between prepping for a Holiday show, an art crawl, and a few other events–that wound up getting rained out grrr!–I had a lot to focus on that passed the time. Oh and HALLOWEEN! Which is, you know, the greatest thing ever. Goo went as Link from Legend of Zelda this year, and I went as Castiel from Supernatural. Continue reading “How Inktober 2018 Changed Me as an Artist”

The First Week of Inktober is Done!

And I’m happy to say I’ve kept up this whole time. I’m a bit surprised, as I’m also working on a Project 365, personal projects, and prepping for upcoming shows. But it’s been fun! And I plan on making it the whole 31 days.

So far I’ve been keeping my Hallow-bunnies in with the original Inktober 2018 prompts, except for day 5 when I really couldn’t find a way to incorporate chickens into a drawing of a Bunny Vampire.

What have I learned?

I think the only thing that’s improved in seven days is the broadness of my horizons. Drawing little things seems to give way to drawing more things, which gives way to bigger pieces I never would have thought up before. I’ve also gotten into doodling again, but this time with different colored Micron pens. It’s pretty exciting.

I will probably only make one final post about Inktober, once it’s all over, so if you’d like to keep up with my entries you can follow me on Twitter or Instagram, or you can head over to the growing collection on my website.

Have your own growing collection of Inktober drawings? Feel free to share links to your work in the comments below!

Inktober is Here!

I don’t know if I’m more excited that it’s Halloween Month, or that it’s Inktober! For those of you who don’t know, Inktober is a challenge thought up by Jake Parker. The goal is simple: draw something every day for the 31 days of October. Click this link for more info.

Not sure what to draw? Here is the official prompt list to help you get started!

The rules don’t say we have to stick to the list, so I’m going to do my own theme (like many artists). My theme will be: Bunnies in Halloween Costumes. I think my biggest hurdle will be different poses and facial expressions. I want to force myself to stray from the typical portrait, maybe even try a few “action” poses. I may also incorporate things from the official prompt list just to have a little extra fun.

I will be posting my Inktober drawings on my Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

Happy drawing!

Getting Artsy on an Autumn Scavenger Hunt

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This morning was all fall: damp, chilly, the sky a crisp and empty blue. Leaves floated down from every tree and rustled under Howl’s feet as he bounded around outside. We couldn’t waste this weather! So, instead of staying cooped up and filling out a bunch of worksheets, I decided to take Goo to the local conservation center for her homeschooling. We printed off a few “autumn scavenger hunts,” collected a bag of art supplies, and headed out. Continue reading “Getting Artsy on an Autumn Scavenger Hunt”

Am I a Painter?

I joke with my husband that I have an existential crisis at least once a month. And it’s true, I really do! I am always getting stuck in the muck of “why am I doing this?” and “who am I as an artist?” and “What on Earth do I have to offer this blue ball in the sky?”

My latest existential crisis was triggered by my experimenting with oil paints, which led to experimenting with acrylic and gouache. I freaked myself out a little. Am I leaving watercolor? Why would I do such a thing? I had so much potential with my watercolor pieces and even had four on display at a local gallery! Why change my medium just when I was starting to get the hang of another? Continue reading “Am I a Painter?”