The other day, I met a wonderful artist in a sketch club. He said, "All is process" about our drawings from his rich teaching experience. In his eyes, some people try so hard to draw meticulously accurate and struggle to create masterpieces, which forces watercolour to behave like their expectations. Outcome disappoints the people. "But watercolour does not like that way!" the upset artist voiced. In his say, a personified watercolour amused me so much and true! He called himself a tough or unwelcomed teacher and whispered me the wise say with a mischievous smile. I perfectly agreed with him. I said, "All work is experiment. My growing process." He smiled back at me.
Publisher and editor Helen ChamberlinI added, "Through my experiences, I know the importance of "let paints work freely," yet, a watercolourist controls paints' freedom. Then, the beauty of watercolour shows up on paper." We enjoyed a chat over art and teaching.
Regarding portraits, I feel an individual personality is like universe. An artist wants to explore universe and express it on paper as s/he likes. I'm drawing this model in different angles and with different styles. If a person is universe, different portraits will come up tens of millions, even from a same model.
But a sitter is not always happy to be depicted in an "ugly" or unfavorable way by an artist. This episode is famous that Archibald winner Ben Quilty took time to negotiate Margaret Olley for his model. Fortunately, Helen allows me to express what I feel freely on paper. She well knows the importance of freedom for artists. What about you, Friends? Do you have or have you ever experienced difficulty in the working relation with a model for portrait work? If you have, let us share your pain.
Btw, technically, interestingly, I "correct" my pencil drawing or an initial sketch by putting colours. See the process. I do not erase wrong lines. The remainded lines help me capture a subject better. My colouring repairs line work. I've felt I'm not a line dominant drawer, but a colour oriented painter. In my work, a black and white drawing is a simple "assistance" for colour painting (Does it make sense?). Lines are the fewer, the better for me. I admire an artist who can use strong lines, for I'm not good at drawing! I want to study how to use lines more.
If these drawings are ongoing process, all the created work is also in the past. I'm not going to cling to a good work done yesterday. It was only mere a passing point in my life. I want to keep creating more today. Messy work is fine and welcome, becuase all is process. I'll have more fun and grow myself as a person tomorrow. Although I love portraits and watercolour is my medium, I want to be brave to seek for other styles and explore techniques in order to freely express what I feel in a model. My goal and starting point is to bring up uniqueness in my style.
I hope myself to enjoy working on more portraits of this model!
Now, we know "All is process." If we are growing in art, our styles and techniques are changing and will move on. If I remain in exactly the same style, it means I'm not growing. Gulp?!
Friends, Happy Painting! Let's give it a go and grow in art!