Thursday, June 17, 2010

Week 1 Journal

Each week, students submit a personal journal on the week's assignments and suggestions from the instructor. Here's this week's guidance:

One of the exciting elements of painting is choosing a subject. This week, if you have not yet had the opportunity, then please spend some time considering and gathering objects as subjects for your painting.

In the process, have you found any treasures? You may reflect here about any element of the creative process to date, how your familiarity with the tools is progressing, and any concerns you have about Moodle or any other aspect of the course.

And here's my journal:

It is enjoyable being back in class. You know, prior to joining up for the first course, I described to my friends in excrutiating detail why I didn't need a course. All the time I knew my motivation was fear, so I had to throw myself in. I am so glad I did, as now I look to this class without trepidation. Perhaps it helps that I blog something or other daily and that my readers comment in a most supportive fashion. I will be looking for in-person guidance after this course. I'm obviously not cured of fear but it does not have the hold it did some six months ago.

It's been three months since the last course and this first journal could begin to read like a "what did I do over the summer" essay. To minimize that, in a nutshell, I made forays into Gothic calligraphy, Celtic art, and split primary (mostly) color mixing. It's all blogged about in detail so I'll leave it at that here, except to say these recent explorations excite me and leave me wondering on direction.
One constant seems to be my love of this art. I've dropped music and band, at least for now, to better focus. I felt my available time too short and needed to focus my interests. I am trying to develop a good foundation of knowledge and experience for retirement within a few years—all while having a fun time.

Regarding subjects, I have lately been attracted to vines—English Ivy, Bittersweet Nightshade, Poison Ivy, and Virginia Creeper. They are all about my yard. Most of them show dramatic change throughout the seasons with flowers, berries, and leaf coloration. But I am not sure yet if they make my whole picture. Perhaps something of a showy flower.. Yellow Day Lilies come to mind, but the timing might not work as the pods are now small and hard. I find their beauty not only in the full blossom but in the quickly turning shriveled browns. I can always rely on my local florists if need be.

While blogging the prior course, I often gleaned material from the week's posts for my journal, but this week of charts is quite similar to prior weeks and weeks of similar material. There is one subject I found most intriguing—brown and grays and saturation and value. See this post, and especially the exchange of comments, for the details. Color theory is so fascinating.

I think I will wrap up this week at this point and get a good start on washes. I'm especially looking forward to practicing blended washes.

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