Saturday, March 3, 2012

So I Took My Own Advice!

And, I had fun! Good so far...
My Watercolor Sketching class began and this is the first thing I attempted. Actually, the first thing I did was to sketch the rose (below), but then I soon realized that I needed a simpler sketch to use as my beginning piece, because I needed to try out some techniques from the class video on it. So, I put aside the rose sketch and sketched the leaves.
I'm really glad that I put this one aside and colored it last, because by the time I finished with the leaves I was brave enough to risk screwing up this rose. And there were a few times that I thought I had while I was painting, but I would lay it aside, take a break, go back to it and try another layer of paint, another color, etc. I managed to get a presentable finished product, and I'm happy and proud of both.

In fact, perservering through my doubt and fear gave me the guts to attempt the handwriting on both pieces. Thanks to JoAnne Sharpe's Letter Love class, I've been able to cobble together a tiny *repertoi-arte* of handwriting fonts that I can write halfway well, and the one I used on these is my current favorite. Hope you like it. You may be seeing more of it, haha. I am at the point now where I just need to practice on everything. So, whenever my Arthurs allow me a vacay from pain, I want to try to draw my letters.

Back to my class...the good thing is that the teacher is a master watercolorist and has quite an intuitive teaching method. Another good thing is that there seems to be a handful of true beginners like me who are posting their work and sharing. Now, the bad thing...the ONLY bad thing so far, is that there seems to a ton of talented, experienced watercolorists in the class as well, all posting their awesome lesson pieces and frankly, making me feel like I'm the scrapbooker blowing sticker sneeze amidst the graphic designer masterpiece layouts. Same feeling as in Traci Bautista's class (but not in any other of my many classes, and this one and Traci's are both Strathmore....coincidink? I don't know...just sayin' that I noticed my similar reaction).

You know how they always have class requirements that list the minimum skills, the prerequisites you must have to take it? WELL, I'm now thinking there should be MAXIMUM, if you do not need this class, then you cannot take it! LOL -- okay, just kidding! But, I almost get the feeling...well, I wouldn't be surprised to find out that the teacher told all of her talented friends and former students to join up so she would have a good turnout. I was contacted by a couple of the other *REAL* beginners and a few are dropping out because of it. That makes me sad.

And it's a bit ironic, because the class is CLEARLY a beginning watercolor sketch class. It's like, the experienced people crowd out (more like psyche out) the beginners, who are the only ones who need the instruction. Oh well, such is the beggar who can't be a chooser because it's free. winkwink

I am not dropping out at this time, and I will continue to post my work for now. But I can see me lurking the class like I have done with the others I've taken this year. The very second that I feel pressure and stress like I did before, I'm in lurk mode straight up! This whole thing was an opportunity for me to analyse why I even began this class NOT in lurk mode. And I think it's because I REALLY, ASSUMED that there would be a LOT more beginners in it. There truly is safety in numbers, lolol.

I'm presently mullling over whether the lesson for me here is to just always lurk and don't even attempt to de-lurk in future classes, lol. This is what I get from operating on automatic pilot from being worn out by my birthday. I *suppose* I'm much too honest and respectful of authority and rules for my own good, can't leave my brain at home ever... winkwink.


pat said...

I think you did a great job on your watercolors. Good for you, jumping right in. You even wrote on yours; something I'm still getting up the nerve to do, so you must not be a beginner; at least not in that area.
I wouldn't worry about all the other people in the class.
Did you notice in Joanne's class that some homework was on Flickr before she even assigned it??? How did that happen??? Where are you taking the watercolor class?

teri said...

You are doing a wonderful job and do not quit. Cathy Johnson is one of the favorite teachers of one of my watercolor mentors, my friend Shirley. I know there are many who have taken her classes and who, knowing she was doing free lessons, are following along. (Her classes aren't cheap.) BUT -- the lessons Cathy is doing truly are for beginners. They're the first things I was taught, and it's all very important, so if you keep at it you will learn a lot of techniques that work together to produce a lovely painting.