Sunday, February 17, 2019

Not a Machine

2/14/19 Shannon (10 min. poses)

I wasn’t feeling it last Thursday at life drawing. It wasn’t the model’s fault – Shannon is always excellent, and I’ve happily drawn her many times, including last fall when working on a long pose of her put me fully in the zone. I don’t expect to get in the zone every time, but I was hoping to feel some of the mojo I had the last time I was at Gage. I kept switching media and paper, hoping to find the right combo that would put me there again, but nothing quite did it.
2-min. poses

Because I sketch so regularly and share often on social media, friends have called me a “sketching machine.” It’s a compliment, and I certainly accept it as one. But one of the most frustrating things about drawing is that the ease (and I use the term “ease” relatively – it’s never easy) with which it comes varies constantly. It might not even be apparent in the results, but it’s the way I feel when I’m making the sketches. Even with regular practice, some days are better than others. If I were a true machine, I could draw with the same degree of flow and confidence every time.

10-min. pose
5-min. pose

10-min. pose


  1. That variability is certainly a mystery and I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one that experiences it (grin). It seems more related to the ability to perceive than the oft-use "hand-eye coordination" thing, whatever that is. Some days I just can't "see" as well as I can some other days.

    1. You might be on to something, Larry. I'm really not sure where the issue is -- eye, hand, brain, pancreas for all I know! -- but some days, it just ain't there! Ah, well -- the important thing is to keep at it, regardless!

  2. Like you, I know that there are days when I am more in the zone than others and days when I get easily inspired and days when it there is little inspiration in what I look at. Thankfully it is rare!


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