But, You're an Artist

About ten years ago, I took an extension class at Pasadena City College on a technique called French Wash.  I was looking for a way to bring color into my drawings and boy did I find it.  I have used this technique ever since and it has also allowed me to face my fears using watercolors.  That is not the tale I wish to tell, so I'll get to it.

In the first session, we were told to bring in a photo that we would like to paint.  I brought in an image of my friend Kathleen riding a horse at a clinic that I had taken.  I had always liked the lighting of the image and thought it would make a good drawing.  We were then instructed to draw the image using stippling. If you don't know what stippling is, it's basically drawing with dots.  So we started our drawings in class and were instructed to finish them at home during the week.  Honestly, it felt good to be in a classroom setting again and it really got my artistic juices flowing.  I finished my drawing and came back to class the next Sunday.

Some people had finished their drawings, some were at the same point that they were when they left a week before.  I sat down and pulled out my drawing and the people around me kind of gasped.  It was one of the most complete and accurate renderings within the group of folks that I was sitting around.  I don't mean to toot my own horn, but there you go.  The guy sitting across from me shook his head.

"You're a real artist."  He exclaimed.  "What are you doing here?"

I shrugged my shoulders and simply told him "I'm here to learn a new technique, just like you."

He shook his head then thought about it, and smiled. 

You see, we were all learning.  Some of us were further down the path that makes you an artist than the others, but we were all there to learn.

I have used this technique now for over a decade now and it had become one of my favorites.

That's my story, now go out and make a mark.


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