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A man's style is his mind's voice. Wooden minds, wooden voices.
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson


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Painting is relatively easy. Color makes it so. It's not hard to select the hue that matches what I see and then put that spot down.

Drawing is harder. There is no color. The mind has to reduce everything to values and then capture the essence of the subject. I haven't really drawn for a while. I need to discipline myself to do so before I paint again.

Sitting on the couch with Tamara last night, I started drawing. The thing about drawing from life is that things often aren't what you think they are.

If I asked you to draw a foot, would the toes extend past the foot, or would they kind of float in the midst of it? I would have thought that they would extend past the foot, but that's not necessarily true.

And so I was reminded last night, as I often am, that the first step in drawing is to forget what I know and see it as for the first time. I can't draw a foot; I have to draw the contours and values that I see. They're not at all the same thing.

And I have to remember that it's okay to get it wrong, so to speak. I'm not a camera. I see with filters and biases and skewed points of view. Check out how the chair is tilted.

Our dog, Dochas, lay just long enough for me to outline her.

And then another take on Tamara's foot.

She has the most pretty feet. And yet, looking at my sketches, they looked too thick.

I'm back to learning anew how to draw. I'm okay with that. I think it got better and felt more relaxed as I went.

I think it's good - and healthy - to believe that we're not an expert despite our achievements and to tackle a task again with humility. Assumptions will always kill us.


by Brett Rogers, 3/24/2007 10:03:35 AM


You are seriously talented. I hope I've told you that before. You are so good at 'seeing' things.



Posted by Annette, 3/24/2007 4:31:40 PM

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