Instructor: Marina Grechanik
When we draw from observation, we're not just copying reality, but trying to transfer something else to the viewer: an idea, mood, feeling, impression. Instead of letters which connect to words, which in turn connect to sentences, we have dots, connecting to lines, connecting to shapes and so on.
In this workshop we will concentrate on and play with two big decisions every sketcher makes when they start a new sketch: what and how.
It's true that because sketching is a spontaneous and sometimes very quick form of visual art, we often don't have time to think while we're capturing an immediately changing reality. But even then, we do make decisions about "what" and "how" instinctively, and the more experience we have, the better and more accurately we can make these decisions.
By doing a series of fun and quick exercises we can go over the basic terms of sketching: what do I want to say and what is the best way to do it?
In the last and longest exercise we will try to apply what we learned in the previous exercises: we will consider the rules but will not hesitate to break them if we need to in order to be spontaneous, and to leave room for chance and "mistakes" because that's the beauty of sketching from observation!
We are all familiar with the phenomenon of a group of sketchers sketching from the same spot yet creating totally different sketches - everyone finds in the same view something different they connect to and are interested in.
This series of exercises should help us observe our surroundings differently, find subjects for sketches, and understand that there are no boring spots – it is all about the point of view.
Every participant will get the same list of subjects for their sketches and will try to make as many quick sketches as they can (5-10 minutes for each sketch).
We won’t concern ourselves with the choice of tools, but with the content, with choosing the frame.
One condition - our sketches (at least some on them) should include people.
HowIn this exercise we will deal with the "words" that will build our "story". We will touch and play with lines, colors, shapes and composition, and will try to understand how all these can help us deliver our ideas.
We will sketch the same view through different filters, for example:
- lines only (use different strengths and thicknesses)
- without lines, shapes only (black & white, washes of one color)
- three colors (choosing the palette and deciding on the role of each color)
- static\dynamic (from the same point - feeling of stability or movement)
We will create a sketch applying the insights we have drawn from the previous exercises:
- observe the surroundings and choose the subject/idea/feeling you want to transfer
- give a name to your future sketch
- choose the format and the composition that best fits
- choose the tools and technique that strengthen your idea
- don't hesitate to break the rules if needed, to be spontaneous, and to leave room for chance and "mistakes"
- include people in your sketch
- tell us your story
At the end of the exercise participants will present their sketches and will explain the artistic choices they made.
Learning goals (What are a few of the most important skills and concepts you'd like your participants to learn from their experience?)
- not to simply copy reality, but to transfer our thoughts through lines, composition, colors and shapes
- to deal with two important artistic decisions:
how to deliver my message
- to try to understand through a series of fun exercises:
how we make decisions
what attracts us to a particular subject
how we can find interesting topics everywhere
what are the influences of the basic composition rules on our message
how specific tools or techniques can strengthen the idea\message
- to enjoy the activity, to improvise, to be spontaneous
- to create works with impact and meaning