Monday, 29 October 2018

Teach Yourself to Draw 2

Learning to draw is a long, steady process. In fact it never ends!  People ask me - `How long would it take me to learn to draw?` I say -` A lifetime`. Even after nearly 40 years I still feel like a beginner, especially when I see the work of the really great masters - which I did a few weeks ago at Kenwood House in Hampstead, London - Rembrandt & my big hero Frans Hals.
I`ve seen many keen beginners give up after a short time. Its that first big hurdle of self-doubt that stops them.
I can remember giving up several times at the beginning. Throwing my art materials on the floor in an angry fit of frustration.
It took me years to be able to sit at my easel and draw or paint for a whole day. What some call the`muse` comes to help. The ability to concentrate, to be in the `zone`, when time passes & one is lost in a deep,
focussed, concentrated state of being, similar to meditation. I don`t have to be in the right mood to draw,
as soon as I sit at my easel and start to draw I am off and don`t want to be interrupted for the rest of the day.
As in learning to play a musical instrument , it is best to do a bit every day, it could be a session of 2 hours or just 10 minutes sketching on a park bench. 15 minutes per day is better than 3 hours once a week. The mind will give up protesting that this a waste of time and start to enjoy this pleasant unusual daily habit.
I love drawing & thank God that I have an occupation that I never tire of doing, so don`t give up!

Thursday, 25 October 2018

Teach Yourself to Draw No1.

How do artists manage to draw such complicated scenes, objects, people etc.?
By simplifying. Learn the basic forms - Cube, Cylinder, Sphere, Cone. Then you will be able to see through the surfaces and draw the underlying forms. It was a revelation to me, With practise (daily if possible) you
can see these forms everywhere you look and draw even complicated things by simlpifying them down to their basic shapes, their real 3D forms.

Monday, 15 October 2018

Teach Yourself to Draw

I`m coming up to 40 years as a professional artist. I have no degree, I am self-taught, or rather, I have learnt from the thousands of artists who have gone before me.
So now I feel it is time to pass on what I have learnt and how I learnt and how I ended up busy doing portraits, caricatures, illustrations - 99% on command and rarely without a project on the go.
This blog will be dedicated to helping people to learn how to teach themselves to draw, which is easier now than when I first started, now online there are so many learning resources-but how to proceed?
My goal is to lead the beginner through the confusing mass of drawing techniques.
40 years ago,desperate for guidance, I went to public librairies for books on drawing techniques, luckily,
as I was living in New Zealand at the time, they had access to American books and one of them was a revelation  to me, it explained one the `secrets` I could not understand - how did artists create drawings that
looked 3D?
These are the actual words that, as Americans say, knocked my socks right off! -