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Yummy Alliteration: Poets & Painters & Pie at Pennington Farms!

We couldn’t resist! Join us for a fun afternoon of playing with words & paints & Pennington’s signature “cutie pies.” You’ll leave with a finished 8″ x 10″ painting, a poem, and a tummy full of goodness. $95 for all supplies & pie & instruction. Email me to register: [email protected]

Another Story from my Upcoming Book

Here is another sample story from my upcoming book, an example of the true (and sometimes pretty harrowing) stories that will be incorporated into my memoirs. I’m so excited about this memoir editing project and hope you will visit my GoFundMe campaign to learn more!

Download (PDF, 11.08MB)

The post Another Story from my Upcoming Book appeared first on Wendy Gell Jewelry and Art.

Flooded Lot

A parking lot under water in Santa Ana, California

Autumn Hues

Autumn Hues was taken with a Sony mirrorless camera recently converted to infrared. I look forward to exploring this alternate way of seeing light.

Poets & Painters (& Pie!)

Family! Friends! Friends that are like family! Anna Elkins and I are offering a fun, no experience needed writing and painting workshop at the charming Pennington Farms in the Applegate. The environment is inspiring, the pie is delicious and the writing and painting will be loose and free, designed to complete a poem/prose and painting in one afternoon. All supplies provided, just bring you and your country drive adventure spirit.

Hope to see you there!
Details:
Saturday, November 11th
11-3pm
$95
Pennington Farms
Registration through email: [email protected]

Autumn Workshops

Autumn Writing Workshops

imgres

Sunday, October 22 & 

Sunday, November 12

2 – 5 pm

Jacksonville  

Cost: $20/workshop

Join us for an afternoon of inspiring prompts and new exercises in a supportive, encouraging environment. 
All writers, experience levels and genres welcome.
Workshops are self-contained. Come to either or both!
To register reply to this email or visit https://writersroomworkshops.com/register-for-a-workshop/

 

More

These are things in my kitchen cupboard. Seriously. I know there should be things like alphabetized spices and cereal boxes and folded linens and all kinds of sundry kitchen things like pasta in tube shaped tupperware but somehow several of my cupboards turned into a prop staging center and shows no signs of changing. Vintage bundles of airmail envelopes, letterpress numbers, old acorns, maps, ink, sugar tongs, tea cups, doilies, a miniature silver trophy, a Steiff donkey, tins in every sugar-tea-coffee-biscuit variety, china plates, some matched some mis-matched, cake stands, Italian marbles and pen nibs have real estate.

There is more. It is constantly evolving. It’s the I Know I Have a Rusted Old Key and Bone Handled Fish Knives somewhere compartment of my brain. I know that if all these disparate charming useless once loved, now beloved, items all live together, the sum of their parts becomes so much more. They are props for my workshops, props for me, inspiration jumping off places, the leading ladies in many paintings, the prized treasure at the funky antique store that has that too chatty lonely owner. They are my creative fuel that keeps the house warm. I could be more organized. Or more focused. Or more precise. Or more streamlined. But why?

More the merrier, More is more. xo

Deliberate Practice Applied To Drawing Better

Purpose.

This article is about practicing smarter using strategic, or deliberate practice, as it applies to the skill of realistic drawing. I will introduce the idea of deliberate (or strategic) practice then share my views on two articles on how to draw and sketch better.  The articles are from the website “Jen Reviews”.

Clarifying Terms.

Please note that Jen Reviews uses the term strategic practice.  From what I’ve read and understand, strategic practice is the same thing as deliberate practice.  Therefore, I’ll use them interchangeably.  

Self Taught; How Do I Improve?

To explain, I am a “self taught” artist.  That is to say I am not a classically trained artist; I did not study at an art academy, school or atelier.  Instead, I read books, attended workshops and then tried to figure things out on my own.  

Such a situation is similar for lots of artists, I imagine.  We have an interest in drawing or painting and finally reach the point in our lives where we can focus our attention on learning.  We set up our drawing table or easel in get down to the business of learning and practicing.

After awhile, though, we figure out that there is more than just trying to draw something from life.  Practice, practice, practice and more practice helps, but  there is something we need to do to get to the next level.

Deliberate Practice Steps

Deliberate Practice.

Enter deliberate practice which is about targeting what you do.  A couple of years ago I read about deliberate practice, which sounded like a good idea.  To summarize, its a purposeful way of practicing.  Put another way, I figure out what skill I want to work on; identify particular exercises that improve my abilities in that area; develop a practice plan; practice; then evaluate performance.

However, how does one go about applying the idea of deliberate practice to the art and skill of drawing?

Reviewing Jens Review.

That is where Jen comes in. Who’s Jen? I am referring to the “Jen Reviews” website. The site publishes in-depth reviews of everything from how to grow blueberries to how to draw better.  While wandering around their site, I found an article on how to sketch too.

Contact With Jen Reviews.

Writers from the website “Jen Reviews” contacted me and suggested their article: “How To Draw Better”.  This was back in August.  I immediately liked the article.  There was one problem, though.  There is a ton of good information in this article backed up by science.  I am still wading through all of the good ideas!

Deliberate Practice Example

Motor Coordination Exercise.

To show you what I mean, have you ever had the problem of your eye, brain, hand and pencil not being in synch?  You think you are drawing a vertical, straight line but you look at it and its wavy.  If you get frustrated enough, you might pull out an extra sheet of paper and do some practice cross hatching.  But, do you really get better at making purposeful marks?  

Yes, this is something I struggle with and Jens Review article “How To Draw Better” explains the exercise of making deliberate, evenly spaced marks with your pencil or brush.  What I particularly like in the article is a discussion of why this exercise works.  

So, how do you to put this new knowledge into practice?  The exercise is simple and its best to practice regularly and at short intervals.  

For me, I decided that this would be an excellent thing to do with my new iPadPro and the iPencil.  Since the tools are new to me, I felt that practice would help.  What I do is practice on routinely as part of a drawing session.  You might see some marks up in the corner of a drawing.  The nice thing is that I can practice, then delete the file.  I am happy to say that I am adjusting to the iPadPro and iPencil just fine.

Lets recap:  if I were doing this exercise as a part of deliberate practice, I would have a plan.  Lets say I practice making a page of straight lines, once per day or session, for one week; two weeks and then a month.  At the end of the month interval, I would evaluate my progress.  Are my motor skills improving?

Blind Contour Drawing Example

15 Tips For Improving.

This is just one of 15 tips (and exercises) that Jen Reviews mentions.  Included is one of my favorites: blind contour drawing.  Several of the other tips have ideas that are new to me, hence the need to bookmark the article and work through the tips.  

And, this is just the article “How To Draw Better”.  Then there is the article titled: “How to Sketch – 15 Tips for Better Sketches That Come To Life”.

I would like to highlight some points.  

  • Many of the tips apply to realistic drawing.  However, several apply to any type of drawing.  The example of practicing making lines and marks is one such exercise.
  • The idea is to identify what you need to work on to improve; select an exercise to do that is appropriate; create a plan of action; do the exercise according to the plan; evaluate progress.
  • Jen Reviews contacted me and suggested that I might like the article “How to Draw Better”.  They also asked that if I liked the article, would I please mention it in a blog post. The blog post referred to was one titled “Toward Non-Objective Abstraction” dated December 20th, 2015.   And Jen Reviews will share an article I wrote that first attracted their attention.  

My Point of View.

I feel strongly that other artists may find these articles useful.  The tips may be just what you are looking for: targeted exercises that will help you develop the skills necessary to improve your drawing.

Plus, if I write about something in a blog post, I will remember it.  

Please Comment.

If you find this article useful or interesting, please leave a comment and share your thoughts.  I’d love to read what you say!  Thanks!

Deliberate Practice: Gargoyle

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The post Deliberate Practice Applied To Drawing Better appeared first on Margaret Stermer-Cox.

Self Portrait

Through a window in Medford, Oregon

Autumn’s Presence

Autumn along a rural road in Talent, Oregon