Picture Muscles

Getting a tad better, albeit slowly. Who’s got the time to spend all day drawing and learning how to draw? That’s not the only artistic endeavour I’m behind on (hello, novel?). But, a peaceful and focused afternoon is a rare commodity for me these days.


My television set. I did it as part of a perspective exercise. Nothing fancy, but I learned something. Then I decided to tackle one of the pics I took on vacation, in this case a tuft of ornamental grass.


I even managed to add the shade to the left of the plant. Dang!

Drawing…at Last!

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My First Free hand Drawing

Okay, it’s not a Picasso, but it’s mine. I did the drawing, based on a children’s drawing book of ancient Egyptian art. I drew it following a step-by-step guide, then colored it using a variety of color blending techniques.

I’ve been trying to get the hang of this, and I’m finding the easiest path forward is through the children’s section. I think it’s because the writers/editors aren’t making any assumptions about what a person already knows. If you’re eight years old, you haven’t had a lot of experience other than your own imagination. I find adult level beginners drawing books and videos to be much more frustrating. I have a feeling they don’t realize how much they’re unconsciously assuming about skill levels.

I find that true of all teaching, actually. I’m a very good teacher, because I take considerable pains to edit my own brain before starting out. I can use WordPress, but someone taking my Introduction to WordPress class probably has no clue. I start from that assumption and find that extremely helpful. I love that “oh, now I get it!” look from students who really hadn’t “gotten” it before, despite attempts to understand and use the tool. I may just have to break down and take an art class – but I’ll go through the ancient Egyptian art book first, using my eight-year-old eyes.

A Matter of Perspective

I think I’m getting the hang of drawing stairs. I’ve been playing around with doors that are either open or closed, although at this point you can’t really tell which direction. Is the door open? Is it closed? Go upstairs if you dare and find out!

At this point I’m doing a combination of reading books, watching videos and then just winging it, as in “what will happen if I do this?” I am getting better, although I’m still a pretty miserable scrawler.

A woman at the art supply store asked me why I was trying to teach myself to draw and I told her that I write fiction, with fully developed characters and environments in my head. I want to see what those characters and places look like on paper. I want to see them, not just imagine them. I realize it’s also just something new and interesting, a skill that will take time to master, as did my writing and my musical instruments. And, my left brain really needs a break.

So, when I feel like it I color and, in the process, learn about wet and dry media, psychology and color pencil blending techniques. It’s fun, on one level and a difficult challenge on the other. I want to to draw the lines and then color them in. So, with graphite, charcoal, markers and lots of colored pencils I am venturing forth into the visual world.

Sculptures at an Exhibition

Arlington has gone whole-hog on the outdoor art scene. We’ve got painted utility boxes, street festivals and art exhibits in public parks. I’m just up the street from one of those parks, Spy Pond, and visited an exhibit called “Art Rocks Spy Pond,” which is going until the end of May. It was a beautiful day, so I took my camera and came back with some lovely pics. Enjoy!

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Glass

I love glass, especially when it comes to photographing things through it. It’s such an unpredictable medium, showing off itself, along with what’s behind it and what’s reflected in it.

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Shop Window into the World

This is the storefront window of a arts gift shop in Arlington Center. They change their display every so often and I come by to catch up on the latest arrangement. On certain days, at certain times, you can see the world in front of, and behind, that window.

Spring Scale

The hubby and I went for a brief walk along the Charles River. And -hooray! – We saw the very first sign of spring. I took this picture while standing on a footbridge over the river. We had a squad of hungry ducks and geese fellowing us around, which I also tried to photograph. Not sure I succeeded.

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I was too far away, so I tried to zoom in and it got a little better.

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They still look like bugs to me! But while I was shooting close up I spied a tree branch with tiny buds. I propped my elbows on the railing and snapped away.

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Now that’s some perspective!