Tuesday, January 5, 2010

365 Days of Drawing...Jan. 4th

Walking in molasses- that was what this one was like. Took me way too long. And in the end I abandoned the hood of the cape. I just had to do something else. Watch a TV episode of Law and Order, The Biggest Loser, eat cookies, or...

Why is it that sometimes things flow with art and sometimes they just don't? Yesterday's drawing felt like I had just begun drawing even though I had painted much of the day. I was glad no-one was watching. My block-in was good, but my work-up was slow and my features went South. Way South. Looked like a five-year old was in the room trying a Halloween portrait for the first time.

When I draw, I always want to be able to look at it later and say, "I like that!". This could be a problem for me on this challenge because a quick 30 minute sketch when I am not 'on' with my drawing, even when I am on, may leave me very dissatisfied. I like a certain degree of finish. And then the thought of posting it publicly. Well, that adds a certain pressure. But that is the point of this too.

I think drawing is a "feeling" thing. You have to really "feel" what you are doing and respond to it for the flow to happen, much like painting. All the best draughtsmen/women I admire have that.

I also think even on a bad day drawing or painting is worth doing. Let's hope that feeling continues.

This head sketch is of a new favorite sitter of mine, Keri. I have painted her from life before and am doing a painting of her right now. She is also sitting for me at my public portrait demo this Sunday for The Santa Paula Art Group in California. And yes, she will be wearing this wretched red cape.

She doesn't have the easiest face to draw or paint I have decided. No cookie cutter features. But this is what makes her beautiful and appealing to me. Piercing eyes. Lovely lips. Heavy french bangs. She is also very intelligent with a certain spark.

I sure hope the painting demo goes a lot easier Sunday than the drawing of her last night. One and a half hours to paint her head, flying by the seat of your pants and talking all the time. Hmm...we shall see.

I hoping my week of drawing will have really sharpened my skills. Think POSITVE.

Tomorrow is Open House where I teach at The Los Angeles Academy of Figurative Art, a free painting session if you are around. Class starts next week on Wednesday. I may draw instead of painting.

I know there is an artist reading this in Paris. Bonjour! I love the fact people are reading this from so far away. It makes me want to keep on...

Thank you for all the great emails. Please post too!



Marian Fortunati said...

You always make me smile, Johanna!

Although I'm sorry it was a trial for you, it's nice to know that even an expert like you feels they "messed up". (Although I can't tell from the drawing.)

I do wonder sometimes why a painting is sometimes "so easy" and one that doesn't seem much different is like nails scratching across a blackboard...

Ah well...

Thinking of you ... still on the high seas...


Roseanne McIlvane said...

I know every artist feels frustrated at times, it's all part of the process......I don't see what you state about this piece....I rather like it, A LOT!

Portrait Painting By Johanna Spinks said...

I am remined frustration remains a part of the art process not matter how long you have been doing it.