texture, structure, depth or a landscape and a self-portrait

I teach a foundations course, students learn basic drawing skills. It is clear to me at this point the class understand the value of careful observation.

We spend the last 2 weeks working outdoors. They learn to focus at an even greater level considering all the distraction outside the classroom including the curious passerby, the almost perfect weather and the continuous change of their subject-matter (nature).

Enjoy these examples of their outdoor study and their self-portrait homework…

Maw – Fake Perception, Oil Pastel

Kado – Shipwrecked

Alondra’s Inconsistent

Jessica – The Heart of Everything

Tyra – I Love It

Esmeralda – Cacti

Deborah – Regrowth

Jordi – Untitled

The homework assignment, a life-size (or larger) self-portrait, is an important and  challenging process. They have all the necessary skills at this point to complete one. They work with marker (no pencil or eraser) all semester and here they can use media of their choice (many still choose the marker). The drawing brings honest conversation.

We leave this particular class critique knowing each other just a bit more.

On the drive home I think every one (every single person)  should be so lucky to have (give themselves) this assignment at some point in their adult life. #theselfportraitforeveryone #gottahaveart

Edith

Alondra – Spirit Desire

Veronica

Jolissa

Deborah – Self Portrait 1

Esmeralda

Tyra, Dear Aisa Don’t Stop Loving Me

Jordi – This is Who I Am

Kado- KMS lol

Kado – Voiceless

Jessica

Maya – Anyone can draw one eye, but drawing two is an art

This is it with the marker – we move on to charcoal.

every picture tells a story

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Wouldn’t you know, they get their marker act together and it comes to an end. We move to charcoal next.

But before we do…
Here are samples of (larger than life) self-portrait work. They use media of their choice. This study moves students into understanding art is a form of communication.

Every portrait tells a story. We learn a lot about each other during this critique.

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Brittany

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Susan

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Michael

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Kanyata

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Maygin

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Kanata (#2)

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Victoria

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Collin

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Kestin

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Robert

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Karen

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Natividad

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Jen

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Alma

I include a few of the outdoor assignments. Students spend 4 days on the campus, drawing landscape.

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…and there’s Susan, an advanced student who learns how to collage. She’s never done it before and this is practice. The image does tell a story but it’s not about birds, it’s about a fox.

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Basically we cover texture, structure and depth. Next week is value.

enter – illusion of depth

  “Maybe a person’s world can grow bigger in all the right ways, not too wide that it becomes shallow, just large enough to preserve its depth.”
― Deb Caletti, The Fortunes of Indigo Skye

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Phoenix provides great weather and landscape and we’re outdoors for 2 weeks to complete the in-class assignment. Students have to consider foreground, middle-ground, and background as they work out a composition. They include different textures and deal with shapes that overlap. For homework, they create a self-portrait.

I explain illusion of depth in a 2 dimensional artwork. A drawing, a painting, and a print have height and width and the depth is illusion. Three dimensional work is real object / sculpture. It has height, width, depth and maybe volume.

These two assignments mark the end of the use of marker. Next we start charcoal.

Below are some examples.

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Mariah’s tree in marker.

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Robert’s Fig Tree

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Tammy’s Study

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Popay’s study.

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Josh’s Bed Head.

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Kayla’s Knots and Leaves

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Adriana’s Fig Tree in pastel and charcoal.

… and the self-portraits …

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Adriana – There’s a party in my head and no one else is invited, charcoal

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Alexssa’s works in pastel and charcoal.

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Angie’s marker and color pencil.

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JT’s works in marker.

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Cassidy’s works in marker.

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Vicki’s works in marker.

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Popay’s self-portrait in graphite.

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Kayla’s self-portrait in marker.

IMG_5206Both assignments require students use everything they’ve learned up to this point, along with working out spatial depth. The critique shows everyone’s progress.

drawing directly from nature

Spring has rolled in.  Landscape drawing in Phoenix, this is the time of the year to do it. Students are still looking…closer than ever.

The assignment uses everything the class has learned thus far…the added lesson, creating depth. Students learn to create the illusion of spatial depth in a drawing. They realize foreground, middle ground and background. They learn to distinguish and draw shapes that appear closer and others that appear further away.

Landscape is complex subject matter no doubt, especially when texture is being emphasized.  I notice all the various ways students resolve the texture of their subject matter, in their drawing.  I refer to it as mark making, and it can be beautiful, expressive, and exciting. The finished work will be more dense than any drawing completed so far.

They won’t include in their composition everything they can see. How much should they include? Twelve hours is the time allotted  in class, to complete this assignment. A few students will make more time.  I suggest they put into the composition as much information so as to make the drawing unique, interesting and so it feels complete. One can’t include everything…pick and choose… the viewers eyes should move about the composition easily, all lines and marks should convey some information.

Today’s progress….

 

Andrew

 

 

Arturo

 

 

Davin, Drawing II

 

 

John

 

 

Kevin

 

 

Mark

 

 

Max

 

 

Misty

 

 

Robert

 

Weather held out, and so did the class.