Published August 11, 2010
Art , DIY , Politics , Work
Tags: Art, Artistic Style, Artists, Creative Journey, Figure Drawing, Figure Painting, Painting, Style, The Figure, Watercolor Painting, watercolors, Women
Sure, the face looks a bit stiff. There’s some problems with the proportions of the head. And I wasn’t expecting Quinacridone Burnt Orange to stain as much as it did… but I’m getting back in the game.
One of the things I’ve been angsting about this summer is how I have yet to develop a signature artistic style. Not having a unique style can really hold an artist back. Without it, you can’t create a unified show to submit to galleries, and you can’t really gain an online following if you’re always spazzing out in a new medium. If you take a look at my portfolio, it looks like five different artists contributed to it. I admit: when it comes to art supplies, giddiness and experimentation often trumps stylistic consistency.
I’ve also given myself a hard time about how often I draw women. Because c’mon, every bloody male artist since the Renaissance has made his career off of scantily-clad white women. And the feminist in me does not want to make money off of naked women. (Not that I’m against naked women…or even making money off of your own nudity. But I am against making money off of other naked women, I think).
Anyways. So that anxiety has caused me to wander through a wide range of styles and mediums, thinking I’ll magically stumble across my strength—my artistic niche—like Jackson Pollock drunkenly spilling that first drop of paint on a canvas.
And yet I keep coming back to the figure. Figure drawing is my strength. It’s what I unconsciously doodle in the margins of my notes. It’s most satisfying to me to figure out how bones and muscle create shadows and curves. Drawing/painting the figure is also a way for me to explore social and political questions about gender, about self-presentation, and about how we view ourselves and each other.
Looks like the ol’ Nature-versus-Nurture debate strikes again. What do you think– do we make our own creative niche?
I posted a while back about a drawing project that I was engaged in– a 7-foot tall realistic self-portrait. …In pencil. (Yes, I wore them down to stubs)
This was such a strange final assignment for my drawing class. We (the students) mostly sat around in the studio, twitching slightly from hyperconcentration, and wondering, “what does one do with a larger-than-life self-portrait?” It’s not exactly the typical Mother’s Day gift, but it’s even weirded to have it on your own wall.
So now it’s in storage. But I’m pretty proud of it (except for the face, which I, um, never finished in the chaos of exams) and wanted to share.
This is most of my body, but the full thing was head to toe.
(fun fact: I almost forgot to draw my tattoo until the last minute)
This is the strongest part, I think. That damn rip in my jeans took me HOURS.
Yeahhhh, just look at it.
This week is my last week of college.
…which is scary.
And that’s the thesis of this post. There are so many things I need to sit down and work through (emotionally, financially) before graduating. All I know is that I’m moving to Boulder, Colorado in one month, and I need all the connections, help, and employment that I can get.
My final project for my figure drawing class is a seven-foot-tall portrait of myself. From head to toe. It has been incredibly time consuming, but also very meditative: I’ve spent hours with a bottle of white wine, just shading. I feel like it should be challenging me to do some self-reflection, but that hasn’t happened yet.
Published February 22, 2010
Art , College
Tags: Art, Drawing, Eye, Eyes, Facial Features, Feet, Figure Drawing, Graphite, Hands, Legs, Mouth, Nose, Skin, Surreal
I’m taking a figure drawing class during my last semester of college– which is, of course, a huge time commitment, but it’s also a beautiful way to end my college career. I’ll be posting some drawings from that class over the next few months.
…but for now, here’s my first large assignment: a surreal assortment involving four limbs and three facial features. The purpose of the project was to get us to develop close detailed studies of some of the hardest parts of the human body.
Also, I had a lot of trouble photographing this piece, so try to ignore the spots and “seam-lines” from where I tried to even out the lighting