I took this class for fun, but also so I could learn skills I’d need to do something I’ve wanted to do for a long time: keep an illustrated journal. I’ve kept a written journal for years, and I take lots of pictures, too, especially when we travel. Now I want to learn how to draw what I see, either here in my neighborhood or while we’re on a trip. I think I really begin to see a thing when I attempt to draw or paint it. To sketch something, I have to slow down and pause in the hectic pace of my daily life. (Learning to draw using pencil, pen and ink and my waterbrushes is also on my Six-Year Calendar of Happiness.)
The class was great, and my classmates were even better. What I learned from it (and them) went beyond adding pigment to paper or learning to sketch quickly and confidently. I learned not to give up on an assignment even when I felt it was turning out poorly. I learned to make adjustments to a sketch to make it more personal, instead of just copying the instructor. I learned not to panic when I made a mistake—most mistakes are fixable, even in watercolor. I learned that art is therapeutic, even if you have an emotional meltdown in the middle of a picture. And I learned that there’s always something you can like in a sketch, even when it doesn’t turn out like you wanted it to. Here are three of my assignments:
Is there something new you’d like to try? What are you waiting for? Do you want to learn to knit? Play a new sport? Explore a new place? I urge you to do it—open up to something you haven’t tried before, and see where it takes you. And come back here and share your experiences with me!