Drawings of Drawings
I prefer the act of doing quick sketches. Just a waterproof pen and a sketchbook is enough to draw the lines and follow the contours of the object. Head up and down as I see and notice the curves and the object gather. Lines often crooked and wobbly and personal. I paint my sketches mostly at home with a reference photo just so I can remember the colors (but I don’t follow them mostly!) Often I will shade the sketch on the spot to indicate light and shadows.
I read an article by Fred Lynch whose words about creating with interest struck me. Below is an excerpt.
When we draw famous places, we are consciously or unconsciously burdened by others’ perceptions of the place. We see the place in a shared way. We look through our own eyes at the subject, but also through the eyes of all the other viewers of this subject. Many of us are also looking through the eyes of other artists who have drawn this subject, or subjects like it.
In other words, we may compromise our enthusiasms to serve the expected – a pre-pictured image.
If we don’t follow our own interests, but rather, do what’s expected, or familiar, we end up creating drawings of drawings or pictures of pictures.
That’s why we see so much similarity in artists’ styles, or more commonly, so much similarity of subjects. We sometimes draw what other artists draw, rather than what we individually would like to draw. Sure, we can draw famous things – they’re famous for a reason- but we should try to add something new to what is said about it – something personal, and thus, memorable. We can’t just show things, we have to say things.
Try to stand apart from the crowd.