November 9, 2010

"It is the East, and Juliet is the Sun"...

Who needs to hire a model when you can paint fellow students like Juliet?...

“In study after study, of composers, basketball players, fiction writers, ice-skaters, concert pianists, chess players, master criminals, this number comes up again and again. Ten thousand hours is equivalent to roughly three hours a day, or 20 hours a week, of practice over 10 years… No one has yet found a case in which true world-class expertise was accomplished in less time. It seems that it takes the brain this long to assimilate all that it needs to know to achieve true mastery...Daniel Levitin

finding the form

I find I'm obsessed with figure studies since returning from the recent workshops, so that has been the focus of my early morning sketches where, as Kim English pointed out, the goal is to "find the form" and record the gesture.

"The idea that excellence at performing a complex task requires a critical minimum level of practice surfaces again and again in studies of expertise. In fact, researchers have settled on what they believe is the magic number for true expertise: ten thousand hours"...Malcolm Gladwell

November 1, 2010

Early Morning Club

A few weeks ago, artist Robert Genn wrote about the importance of scheduling creative endeavors first thing in the morning..."The minute you awaken, proceed like a zombie to your studio. Before your kettle has boiled, before you have checked your email, squeeze out and prepare your palette..."
I find that I am really drawn to those fleeting moments before the first light of day, before the phone rings and doorbell demands our attention; before the world sweeps us off our feet and hurls us in a new direction. I love that magic hour when all is quiet (including our minds) and the muses are beckoning. Glancing out at the stars or, on this particular morning, witnessing the beautiful crescent moon, we are encouraged to face the blank page without judgment. Detached from "outcome" we are free to practice "process" before our inner critic awakens.

While I may not post all my efforts, I think I would like to to "join" the Early Morning Club with the intention of sharpening my drawing skills; perhaps rendering studies in paint as well as charcoal, pastels, pencils, markers. We will see. I may make it up as I go along, because after all, waking up before dawn is easy, and I've already "mastered" the part where I am expected to proceed like a zombie... So, the way I see it, I'm already halfway there; why not crank out a few sketches, too? Come on and join our virtual "club"!
"The breeze at dawn has secrets to tell you...

Don't go back to sleep, don't go back to sleep"...Rumi

8 x 16, oil on canvas
"Sunday in the Park"
I saw this very tall, lovely girl reading her book in the park, and couldn't wait to paint her. The best models are just everyday people being themselves. (click painting to enlarge)