Sketching? What for? I’d have an image in my head already…one that just needed to pop out. So why the sloppy looking pencil strokes? Why waste the time? Why sketch?

That’s how I looked upon sketching for a long time.

Then, when I recognised that many of my figures are always static and fixed, I decided that I’d need to sketch to loosen them up and look for movement in the figures…expressions that would have to grow from my own movement rather than resulting from fixed images in my mind’s eye. But once I was ready to sketch, I didn’t now how to go about it.

So, yesterday at the illustration class I had a goal: figure out how to bring my figures to life. Since I’d drawn those forests of birds, heavily inspired on Gantschev, I wanted to make them my own…and the forest too. And guess what? The teacher said the same. She loved the paintings, but she wanted the birds to come to life as well. They weren’t as free as the trees. So she got exactly what I missed in my drawings too. Great! Now she could help me make the drawings my own…away from Gantschev…ahead to movement in my figures. So, from a finished drawing like this one with static birds:

I had to go back to the basis and sketch and find birds that would actually come to life.

At first it seemed a bit overwhelming. Where to start? How to go about it? But that’s where good teacher comes in! She showed me how to go about it and how to search for figures in basic shapes…how to toy with the basic shapes to perhaps find nice creatures. And from the shoulder I had to draw! Away with tittytattytine movements from the wrist out…I had to draw from the shoulder…and stand while doing that!!! Wow, that felt a bit awkward in the beginning.

But guess what? I had superdupermuch fun doing it!!! From all those basic shapes, I saw birds grow…sitting, standing, sleeping, lying, flying, crouching in ever possible position. I didn’t think what I wanted to draw, I just let them come to life from basic shapes and movement. It was awesome! And I had some awesome results doing it!!! The teacher gave me a bunch of good advice while I was working and I had wings while working.

I must work on my stuff for the Crafty Gardens now, but I really can’t wait to get back to my bird painting, because I’m bringing a whole new world to life! I can’t wait to see what lies yet hidden in my movement!

It is as if a whole new dimension of drawing has finally been revealed to me. As if I finally “get” it! So funny! I even see it in the work of others now. How they found that figure!