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Monday, November 30, 2009

Life Lessons...

Raking   watercolor/graphite   21 x 13.25
I love learning. And I prefer learning life lessons from experience rather than through books. I prefer the learning that self-corrects after mistakes that are made. And I love drawing and painting from life rather than from photos. Life observation teaches about the sculptural qualities of the human form, the human face. This is my preference and I'm sticking to it despite the current wave of artwork, especially award-winning artwork, that is obviously done from photos or even (cringe) photos projected onto canvasses. (Now, of course, being that every yin has a yang, and every tradition spins over into a "new" revelation, modernism is quite accepting of the work that results from copying, rather than observing from nature. Case in point: experiencing sports through realistic digital simulations on your own television; i.e. bowling, skiing or playing football. )

In one of our last painting classes for the year, we painted from a model, a raking man. It was a challenging exercise for both the model and the artists. Things that move. Things that force you into capturing the essence early on. For me, the spirit of the figure is more important than the mistakes that are inevitably made. I noticed that the weight-bearing leg changed from artist to artist as the model shifted weight to avoid fatigue. I believe that all of the paintings of "raking man" were successful in their honesty and in their attempts to understand. This painting session was an hour and a half............well spent. And, come to think of it, never say never, I adore Guitar Hero.

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