Before my holidays, I had decided to go back to basics with my drawing. I had let my basic drawing skills languish over the years. So I got myself a rather excellent book on drawing:
“The Complete Guide to Drawing and Illustration”. It’s a well thought out course, designed to get you drawing full pictures straight away and build up a strong process. Drawing is simply a skill. Art is in the expression and the composition. Everyone can draw so I bugs me a little when someone says “I wish I could draw”, because they can, they’ve just decided they can’t. I shouldn’t get so irate about it though as it’s this exact mentality that made me consider my drawing as a secondary way to creatively express myself (writing became my first). In school there were a number of very talented artists, who were simply better. As I went through school, I ended up comparing my results to their work and found it lacking. Rather than try and improve and ask for help, I did the teenager thing and sulk about it and since then I’ve let my love of drawing dwindle.
The introductory text reminded me of exactly why I like drawing. My wife says that I’m a man of simple pleasures, it’s not what you draw or the end image that is important but it’s the act of drawing that gives you pleasure and capturing “something” in the end result, an expression, a tone or a strange shape. Drawing, in itself, is not complex but is engaging.
So with this long holiday planned, I decided to pack my drawing stuff. I was excited about picking up my pencils and pens again. Chargey is in the east of France, lost in the country side and properly soaked in the summer sun. The house is old, several generations, filled with old paintings and antiques going back to Napoleon times. A great place for finding subjects to draw.