Sketching Challenge

After my promises post, I decided to give myself a little more time for fun. I love drawing and painting but don’t really do much because sewing seems a much more practical use for my time. But when I draw or paint I really do get lost int he process, definitely a becomes meditative and time just slips away along with any worries or woes!

So I have promised that I will do more art! No backsliding it is here in black and white and now on my to do list!

I thought I would participate in a daily drawing challenge, as I needed something to aim at, it was run by a local Artist on the Art Trail this year. It was only a small little sketchbook with thirty pages, so it doesn’t feel daunting.

01-Missing key

Challenge 1 – A Key – I thought I would use negative space instead of observation, I love doing swirly doodle lines so this is entitled – the missing key!

03-Hat

Challenge 2 – A Hat – this is one of my favourites, its a bright red felt pillbox! I really enjoyed the sharp shadows and the dome.

04-Hat 1

Challenge 3 – A pair of scissors – graphite offers so much fun with tone, the handles had quite exciting curves! Of course they had to be dressmaking scissors!

05-Glass object

Challenge 4 – a Vase – this tiny vase is a beautiful Swedish glass maker. The colours change throughout, they make an interesting subject for coloured pencils and it is quite wonky, the test was to replicate the wonkiness and resist the desire to straighten it up!
07-Cotton reel

Challenge 5 – Something red, back to sewing! this cotton reel was good fun to study, had to be coloured pencils otherwise it would not be red.

seam ripper

Challenge 6 – A tool (of course it had to be a sewing tool!) Sadly this is used quite often!

06-Glass object 2

Challenge 7 – Glass Could not resist going back to the wonky vase to have another go! This time from another angle you can really see the wonkiness now!

The great thing about this exercise is that you can focus just on a small object rather than trying to compose a painting or drawing. The scale is simple and the idea of the challenges were achievable in a short space of time.

It has inspired me to do more drawing and certainly has tightened up my observation although these are no way perfect! I think it helps to have something to focus on – I enjoy being challenged. I find without them I can’t seem to focus there is just too much choice.

Do you enjoy challenges?

Susanna Signature

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Paolozzi

Saturday we visited the Pallant House Gallery which was exhibiting works by Eduardo Paolozzi, it is well worth a visit. Paolozzi created a beautiful mural for the Tottenham Court Road Underground station. His work seems to be mainly influenced by the space era of the 1950’s with mechanical shapes and collages of 1950’s American advertising. Like many artists his work is not limited to just painting, textiles, and Wedgwood plates, film as well as sculpture. He experimented with wax casting, creating heads out of cast metal it was interesting to see the process unfold.

The poster prints are a riot of colour and mechanical shapes, that I found it a little busy there was so much to attract the eye, but it reflects the colour explosion of the 1950’s so well – this was a time when vibrancy was an reaction to the deprivations of war time Britain.

The mechanical drawings and prints remind me of the Steam punk imagery that is a subculture of today, where steam and monster structures combine with robotic implants on humans. These have been recurring themes throughout the ages, right back to the luddites who saw machines replacing jobs.

It reminded me of a period of drawing I did a few years ago, when I discovered some old engineering stencils – I loved the technical aspect of drawing and used them to create an imaginary machine of my own. Sadly the original is lost, but this is a photocopy – the tones have been lost from the original pencil but it gives a flavour.

My two favourite objects from the exhibition was a gold porcelain piece – it had been cast from impressions and then made from porcelain which was then covered in gold. I think the structure would make the light reflections absolutely beautiful.

I really liked the gold version of the Wedgewood Plate, mostly because I can follow the pattern and texture more easily than the colourful version. 

The combination of blue tones and pattern is gorgeous, and very inspirational.  Well worth a visit if you can it is running until the 13th October 2013. 

Pablo Neruda Poem

I did this poem for S for his birthday, it is one of my favourites – we both enjoy Art Nouveau and so I based each of the lines using the forms as a basis for the design. 
I enjoyed creating the flowing symmetry

these are all pretty small about 4 inches by 5

I tried to make each window a little different, combining arches 

This is a line drawing of the two of us. 

with squares 
Circles 

and ovals – this is our two initials – S creating a swan
I love the way the moon is a reflection of the sun. 
I really enjoyed this project and it has made me think about doing some greetings card designs. 

Oodles of Doodles

I bought this lovely doodling book; I can’t always get out my paints – there are times when I simply want to switch off for a while but only have ten minutes to spare. These little pages encourage creativity in bite sized pieces, I find it relaxing because I am not focussed on the outcome. I was told my my friend M that it is the most relaxing activity you can do, she is a fan of colouring in books.

 Doodling is a great way to develop your drawing style; it is often by accident I come across something lovely to develop. Playing is under-rated – as adults we are discouraged to do so – but without it we close ourselves of to discovery and free expression.

Take a simple page of colourful circles, it was really blissful to play with the shape and it is amazing how a few lines can change the shape.  I also enjoy playing with my large pot of crayola crayons, they blend so nicely – because they are crayons there is no pressure to create a ‘work of art’ it is all about play. Picasso says that ‘everyone is an artist, the skill is to remain so when you grow up’ 
Sunrise – crayola crayons

Drawn in

I have been writing articles for a while now, but I have decided to take a break – I have found that I spend a lot of my creativity thinking up projects for the magazine but I would like to spend a little more time playing with projects and allowing them to develop and grow, as well as play with new techniques and ideas. 
Another reason is that I have not been doing a lot of art lately, and I am craving time with crayons, pens and pencils. I drew this heart for my son about a year ago, I developed the work further to submit to the Royal Academy of Art Summer Exhibition, it was an exploration of the concept of love. I have to say I like this little drawing, it is about 6 inches wide by 3 cm deep, the reason I am telling you this is so that you can understand that the little loops and flowers are very small indeed. 

Another of my favourite ones is this one, not only do I love Neruda’s poem but I really enjoyed the process of creating it. I call it doodles as it is totally unplanned, I just allow the pen to go where I think, creating a shape and developing it gradually circle by circle. 
This pepper was drawn using the same pen technique about 3 years ago, I was on an art break holiday, and I used the size of the circles to create form.