Thursday, February 28, 2013

Finding My Eye: Seeing by Drawing

Our lesson for Kat's Journey of Fascination this time was to photograph an object, and then draw it.

I put this lesson off for a bit, partly because we were going to be gone for a long weekend visiting our daughter at college. Partly because I was scared of it.

The last time I drew something that I was proud of was when I was about 10 years old. I drew a picture of a Basenji dog that I had found in a dog book. I took great care to get everything in correct scale, and even colored the whole picture of this dog in a grassy field. I was so proud of myself. I wish I knew what happened to that picture, although maybe memory is better than the actual picture. I am not 10 anymore and I am much more critical of myself than I was then.

Yesterday, I began the assignment. I searched the house for a sketch pad and the right pencil. The pencil is very important to me. I set up my object, a wood cornice piece that I bought at an Antique Market a couple of years ago. I snapped a few pictures before I started to draw.

Then it was time, time to draw. I sat on my kitchen chair in front of my object with my (formerly my daughter's) sketch pad in my lap and a creamy, lead pencil in my hand. I began to follow the lines. Straight lines, curved lines, angled lines and lines of texture.

I was particularly fascinated with the molding at the bottom of the cornice. Maybe because I felt I drew that the best.

I thought of the craftmanship that went into making this piece, the layers, two side faces with Curley Q designs and the strong solid center. I also loved the nail holes, wondering how long those nails have been there.

This was a challenging but rewarding exercise. I will do it again. I have lots of empty pages in that sketch book. I think it will be kind of fun to fill them up.


  1. What an interesting assignment - as someone who often sees things differently than the camera, I think I understand the purpose. I need to find myself a sketch pad. I love the cornice - and I'd say you did quite well with your sketch!

  2. My grandmother used to say, "the worst of your worries never come true"....and look. Your didn't and not only that-they worked wonders for you and you want to do it again. Since your daughter is in college you can totally snag her sketch book. I love the crops you took on these after drawing.

  3. Your sketch looks great! I am impressed with the difference in your before/after photos. The first image is lovely; wonderful light on this beautiful shape. Your last close-up images brings my focus to the textures and small details. It makes me wonder, where was this piece nailed? What stories could it tell?

  4. What a lovely piece to draw - so rich and full of texture and shape. Your drawing came out beautifully! I completely relate to that fear of the blank paper...I struggle with that a lot!

  5. Wow! The details you pulled out in the later photographs really show me what you noticed. All I saw in the first image was the "whole" but you made me look more closely. I'm glad you enjoyed the exercise!

  6. What a difference between your before and after photos! I love the way your sketching caused your photographic eye to focus in on the details and texture.

  7. Great image and a very thoughtful post Sarah thanks for sharing....

  8. My first thought as I read this was. here's a gal who 'ponders' the details. I look at the details but rarely let my mind loose to go any further. I guess I should 'stop' for a few seconds and do that. Thanks again for stopping me dead in my tracks. LOL nice drawing, I need to watch this lesson.

  9. You capture the flaking paint so well, I think I could gaze on old flaking paint for hours. It was not apparent at all initially that the subject had old paint on it, then the close up drew me in, also the lower left corner shading on your drawing. The mitered corner of the moulding, great perspective.


Thank you so much for visiting today and taking the time to read my thoughts on life. :)