Monday, June 18, 2012

Life as an art student | Day 9 of 20

Today's class was an all-time low for me. *Pfffffffffffffffffffttttttttt* Pardon me and the pity party that I am having for myself. Want to see the best shot I took today at my easel with my phone? Here it is:

Oh look! It's a heavily filtered instagram of my paints! What does this show of the work I actually did? Answer: NOTHING.

Seriously though. I pretty much hated everything I did at the easel today. Was I in a sour mood to start off with? Possibly. I don't know though. I mean, I actually was sincerely excited to get started because we are working with a live model doing figural work this whole week and I have never done that before! That doesn't change the fact that last night I actually had (what is consider to be to me) a "bad" dream where I was in class and the model showed up and she was what I imagined was the worst model ever. She wouldn't stay still and she kept talking and distracting everyone. She was also covered in body art so it was really hard to actually see the natural contours and lines of her musculature. Etc. etc. etc.

(Note: I am not against body art but I can imagine too much of it could obscure what a person's body really does look like for the purposes of figural studies in painting and drawing and I believe it is for this reason that I came up with such a "bad" dream as this for myself.)

So, we started class with a discussion about what the expectations were for this week's work and though I definitely was intimidated by what we are setting out for, I was really REALLY willing to go for the gusto with things. Then we got into the studio classroom. I set up my easel and was seemingly OK so far.

The professor complimented me on my aggressive and bold strokes and thick application of color in order to view the parts of the model's body as planes versus as a whole body. I was feeling motivated for the most part and confident as much as I could.

Then he stopped all of us and had us do charcoal studies using only lines in order to help inform our brush strokes and better understand the contours of the body as planes (in relation to one another) versus us just painting what we were thinking in our minds that we wanted to paint.

The above is a view of what I did after five tries. FIVE TRIES!!!! Ridiculous. I thought I disliked drawing before but I can pretty much say I totally loathe it at this point. *shrug* I just don't enjoy it at all. I don't even know any other way to put it than that. I like painting and sculpting but I pretty much hate just straight drawing. It's boring to me. *shrug* Probably has something to do with the fact that I am pretty naturally bad at it. (BTW - I did actually develop the above further but as soon as my professor gave me the go-ahead I hopped back over to the painting.

Well, perhaps I should have spent more time on the line drawing because when I stopped painting today this is what I had in front of me:

Is that a mess? Perhaps it's underpainting? I feel like it's probably much more the former than the latter but let's just pretend it's the latter because then I won't feel that much more compelled to rush into class tomorrow, rip it off my easel, and rip it into tiny pieces so I don't have to look at it any more. I think the major issue is that I started getting really annoyed and slopping and ended up with both solvent and liquin all over my canvas.

Oh well. Live and learn. And practice makes perfect, right? My professor said he does not want us to be afraid to start over and, rather, he wants us to be open to that option and consider it to be an essential part of the creative process itself. Well you know what? I'm pretty OK with that. Give me a clean canvas tomorrow and I will be a happy painting student thankyouverymuch.

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