"Where Should I start?"

by Jollyon Hooley
(Fort Carson)

Artist at Work

Artist at Work

This is the question you will probably ask yourself when you sign up for art college. “Where should I start?” The basic starting point for practically all students would be a visual curiosity about the world around him. The environment they live in would be the best place to start.

Quite a few artists make their immediate surroundings and make it their main concerns. We get bombarded with climate change and rising temperatures almost daily. Much of it is crap but a few truths show through.

Be aware of the young child drawing, watch the expression on her face—can you read what she is thinking?

I was invited to a school in DR—a mixed school of English and Spanish—where the art teacher played Brahms and the kids were then asked to draw what they were thinking with this classic music and to draw their thoughts in colored pencil.

I was amazed at the results with the pure creation; they were truly magnificent and far beyond their age group in creativity and style.

Some of the kids asked me the question; “How can I draw vibrations?” and I had to respond with “whatever you think they are!” This was also a complete surprise seeing their drawings almost similar but completely different.

Wavy interlocking curves with straight lines to give contrasting effects. Really wonderful stuff.

Kids do have a direct and bold approach and get more timid as they mature—but that should be the other way around. As adults mature and divest themselves of “the way it should be done in this college” you are not taking your art very seriously.

You have to re-evaluate as you progress how you are doing and taking NO EVALUATIONS from other people—that includes fellow students and art teachers. You do all your own assessments of your work--nobody else!

When art students start, they are given projects to do to assess how the student sees and interprets. How you draw is a key point for some teachers but drawing skills only develop after years of practice.

Next article will be “learning to observe.”

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