Thursday, February 27, 2014
Such tough critics on ourselves
This afternoon I met a few Urban Sketching friends for a sketch date at a local cafe. We'd arranged to meet there in case it was raining or cold, and we ended up staying inside for the most part because it was windy and looking like it was going to rain any minute. You could just tell that as soon as you got situated somewhere with supplies around you and a good sketch subject in view, it would start to rain and you'd have to run for cover.
I've not been sketching as regularly as I like, and I can really tell when I'm feeling rusty. But I tackled sketching a person which felt like a good challenge for me. (Luckily, she was engrossed in reading on her electronic device and sat pretty still. Moving people are tricky!) She's not great, really, but I was proud of myself for not avoiding her and I was pleased with the result.
But what struck me was how hard all of us our on ourselves. Of the four of us who where there, only one seems confident in his skill. He's a graphic designer by profession, and has taken art classes and drawn and painted all of his adult life. He's even taught drawing classes, he mentioned casually today. Oh. No wonder his people look so good.
All four of us had really different styles, and used different media (straight to pen, or using markers, or shading with water-soluble pens), and approached drawing in really different ways. And -- at least for the three of us relative newbies -- we all liked each other's work better than our own. Pip and I have decided that we are the perfect sketching companions, because we always like each other's work better than our own so we compliment each other lavishly (and mean it) and do wonders for each other's confidence.
But how interesting it is that we see our own work so critically, and can take such delight in someone else's work.