Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Sketchbook Explorations, Part 1

I've recently signed up for a course designed by Jane Davies, with whom I've taken a number of workshops in the past. This is a downloadable course: it has no feedback from the instructor and no interaction with other students. It features a structured set of exercises, accompanied by a few video demonstrations.

Jane Davies offers a number of these classes, which can be found on her website, along with many video tutorials. I chose something very basic and fundamental: Sketchbook Practice. I hope that having the structure of a class like this will help me re-engage with my studio practice, as I have been so distracted these last months.

I am lucky to have two friends who have decided to join me in this venture, and I look forward to sharing the experience with them.

I begin the first lesson by gathering up all the mark-making materials I can find in my studio. I limit myself to the colour black. The idea is to make lines, just exploring the different qualities of each medium. Can you make a thick line, a thin line? What if you reduce the pressure? Can you smudge the line? Add water to the line? Use your non-dominant hand?

The next assignment in Lesson 1 is to use line to express an emotion. Here are my efforts:




(I like this design, though I'm not so sure
it expresses Envy.)

Continuing with Lesson 1, we are asked to do some "blind scribble" using various marking tools, and then, with eyes open, to apply some watercolour to the scribble.

If you look closely, you can see the white scribble,
created with a china marker, which resists the water colour paint.

I've never been one to use a sketchbook, but I can see the value in this kind of exercise, even if it's just to loosen up.  The final part of Lesson 1 will include blind contour and contour drawing. Looking forward to further explorations!

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