Monday, June 28, 2010

Straitjacket

I haven't enjoyed my drawing class at all this term, mainly because we've been working very small, (A4 at the largest), but these last few weeks we've been working on small gestural drawing, which sounds self-contradictory.

Two weeks ago, we did a lot of erase/draw in 1/4 of A4, in durations between one and five minutes. The more time I had, the more I fiddled.

I've been working mostly on gessoed textile, for which I can only use chalk pastels to erase, and I find the results so dissatisfying. What Ronette is trying to get us to do, drawing the unexpected in small scale, and my wanting to make the most of the textures and designs of the textile, is not melding. The one on the left above is the only one I thought I could work on some more, our of a dozen in the last two weeks.

Ronette doesn't like my lack of color mixing, the way I erase, or that I erased with my hands not the erase; she even showed me how to erase on a drawing I was working on, which became a bit too much on Friday, I started to feel physically sick.

Others are also taping around the gesso, gessoing on collage, gessoing over multiple colors of acrylic, etc., but these feels old, no something I want to revisit now. Some students are getting superb results, some are as puzzled as I am, but I seem to be the only one genuinely unhappy.

I think the point of going to classes is learn new ways of doing things; I think in weaving and drawing I've been open to new ideas in the last two years. And my conclusion is, I must try new things to see what suits me, to discover what I like. And for now, I tried small gestural drawings, and they are so not me. Not one bit.

Next Friday is the last day of this term; Ronette promised we'll work a tad bigger next term. I wonder if I should be a renegade and prepare a few A1 sheets.

EDIT: The top photo is in focus. It's the drawings that are not.

3 comments:

  1. Meg, you're such an exciting, exploratory artist. I love your work. Yes, everybody needs to learn new things and push beyond established comfort zones. But I believe at our stage of the game that it's also important to acknowledge that we are fully formed people and have experience and knowledge and know where we can go and sometimes know where we won't go. Notice I said 'won't' and not 'can't'. I admire your work and your skills and talent. Listen to your body. It's telling you something huge. Back in early June you were talking about feeling physically ill because of the class. That's just too much stress. Relax and trust yourself.

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  2. Ditto what Sunny said.

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  3. Did I mention it in early June? Geepers... I better take it easy. Maybe I will prepare huge A1 sheets! (Although I have oodles of tiny pieces of gessoed fabric I would like to use up if poss....)

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