I just read an article written by Steven Pressfield. That's the guy that wrote "The War of Art", "Do The Work", "Turning Pro", and other similar page-turners. Also the guy, by the way, that wrote "The Legend of Bagger Vance". You can find all those books on his website.
The article I read today was called "What's Your Culture". It was how entrepreneurial type people have to create a work ethic. How do you get things done when your not answering to anyone.
You have to learn how to keep promises to yourself. Like I promised myself I would post a drawing a day on this website.
That, my friend, is not easy. I know not many people look at my website. That doesn't matter. I am sure nobody would really miss it if I didn't post a drawing on one day. But I made a promise to myself that I would. So I will.
They may not always be stellar drawings but they do force me to make an effort to draw a picture every single day.
One of the things that makes you a professional is keeping promises to yourself. That's discipline. That's professional.
Here's my drawing for the day. I hope you enjoy.
When I was in High School I was told to read "In Watermelon Sugar". Reading, at the time, was foreign to me. It is not that I couldn't read but I suppose I refused to read. I hated to read. I had the attention span of a gnat. I hadn't cultivated the discipline it takes to see it through.
After what seems like eons and plenty of hard work developing that concentration muscle between my ears I do truly enjoy reading. A couple of years ago, in the little town of Manchester by the Sea, Massachusetts, I was strolling down the avenue and I found this fabulous little used book store.
"In Watermelon Sugar" is one of those rambling, fanciful, hard to digest books. I get caught up in this tangent or that tangent and nothing seems to make sense. This book tries to explain a place that doesn't exist which makes it a bit tough. Many times I can do okay with those books. I love the ramblings of Kurt Vonnegut Jr.
I've been thinking a lot about that book (too much) and it inspired me to make a little iPad painting of a lovely juicy sweet watermelon. I've just taken my first bite and I'm well on my way to conquering this little mountain - and I hope it tastes good.
This little fella was walking on the beach with me the other day.
I thought he would make a nice iPad Drawing.
Rag'n'Bone Man - Human (Official Video) - YouTube
It's a bit daunting to find something to draw every day. I want the drawings to be interesting which may be kind of getting away from the point of this exercise. The task is to get to draw something every day - period. Some days I will have more time than other days but the point is to get a drawing done every day. I need to get away from all the consternation and just draw something even if it is terrible.
Now it's time to put my headphones back on, put my nose to the grindstone and do some work.
For today's challenge I choose binoculars. I don't know why. They were sitting there on the table minding their own business. They didn't ask to be captured for posterity. They were however, very cooperative. They stayed perfectly still and quiet. They didn't complain when the likeness wasn't exactly what they had expected.
This double barreled symmetrical challenge helps me work on my observation and drawing skills. I have to limit my time on these little practice drawings. I could work on them for hours and hours and enjoy every minute of it. I do want to practice every day and one way to practice every day is to keep myself accountable. Posting these pictures every day will help me stay accountable to myself and will be a record of the challenges, successes and failures.
You would think books would be really easy to draw. They're just rectangles and boxes. Aren't they?
I suppose it depends on how accurately you want to represent those shapes.
There are a lot of straight lines on books. Straight lines are hard to draw without a ruler. Then again, as you can see below not all of the lines are absolutely straight. If I used a ruler it might help but I am sure it would look stilted and robot like - which is not what I am going for.
The books I have represented below were sitting on the coffee table in the living room. I thought I would actually try to observe what a book actually looks like. I decided here not to concentrate on the text and graphics on the cover. In the limited time I gave myself to draw this. I tried to represent them as accurately as possible.
The following dimensions were things I discovered in the drawing of books on coffee table.
1. Text and graphics in cover - blurred because text is difficult to represent in limited time and I wasn't sure how to do that.
2. Straight lines - difficult with free hand drawing - lines can get wobbly
3. Perspective - Single point perspective - I don't think I paid enough attention to vanishing points but tried to take it into account.
4. Tone - light and dark
5. Pages - How do you represent pages between the covers of the book? I tried to use multiple lines.
6. Shadows - The books are kind of floating because there is no shadow grounding them.
The end result, i think, can be recognized as books stacked. In my opinion, a good book is more easily read than drawn. More time might help.
I'll keep on practicing and trying to make little improvements here and there.
Today we flew from JFK to STT. The end of a long journey. Had a nice cup of coffee this morning before the flight. It's nice to savor some of the simpler things. Life is made up of little moments all strung together. It was a long day but now, safely on the ground I can relax and rest.
I have some difficulty with symmetrical things like glasses, bottles and cups. Thus this little practice piece.