Thursday, May 29, 2008

I'm still sketching





Some artists say that they never draw. I know I can draw well --
I was trained in the classical method, although I don't draw
that way anymore, but more and more lately I've been
using sketching like knitting, as a happy distraction
whenever I know I'll have to sit and wait. When you
sketch in public everything changes every few seconds.
I like the challenge that poses. After awhile you realize
you can't get it, that man won't turn around and go
back to the pose, the woman who had her arm around him,
and kissed his cheek suddenly left in a huff.

Furniture is better. It behaves. But people push and pull
at wooden subjects too, moving the chair you've almost
nailed. When I paint in the kitchen, for a still life
painting, I cover the kitchen table with sheets of plain
bond, masking taped together, then outline the objects
I'm painting so I can take my set up off the table for
supper, and put it back afterwards without disturbing
my family.

Your family, like mine, may not like you spreading
your paints all over the house, but they are
pretty good sketching subjects. First of all they're
used to you. You are always there, in fact you may
bore them so thoroughly that after
awhile they don't even notice you.

My favorite sketch in this little sample is the one
of Steven sleeping, complete with the ear plugs
and eye mask he wears while his insomniac wife
reads. The next one is Steven fixing a slide
projector in our attic room at the schoolhouse.
That's Zoey the dog on the floor.
Next comes the view from our room in Anaheim,
California last April, looking out over Disneyland,
which we never visited. And the last sketch
was done quickly in the pub where my son
worked. The big man is a bouncer watching the
crowd very carefully.

It's time to draw the line around this day.

Have a thankful Friday.

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Portrait Artist

My photo
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I paint and draw on commission and for shows. To commission a portrait, or purchase one of my paintings please contact me at: barbara.muir@sympatico.ca
A major highlight in my career? Drawing Oprah Winfrey live via Skype for her show "Where in the Skype are you? Galleries: Studio Vogue Gallery, Toronto, Canada. The Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, New York City. Gallery at the Porch Door, Kingston, Canada. Your positive comments on this blog mean the world to me. I'd love to hear from you!