Ever hear that saying, "Making mistakes is part of learning"? Personally I love it and use it on a daily basis. But...
Obsessing over mistakes is a surefire way to loose enthusiasm. An eraser encourages active self-criticism. Give your teen a pen for their sketchbook, so they don't burn out!
Don't get me wrong, an eraser is essential for impressive finished art. After all, we want to be able to correct that crooked nose before giving our sister her portrait! But that's not what a sketch book is for.
A sketch book is for practice, for developing confidence, to capture inspiration and ideas. Quickly sketching the same thing six times with minor mistakes will get you further than one laborious drawing that takes longer anyways.
Benefits of sketching with ink:
Ever notice how confidently performance artist's draw? One clean movement to make each feature of a boardwalk portrait. I quiver to imagine doing live portraits myself, I am very much addicted to my eraser when it comes to portraits. Because they do not stop to correct they learn to get it right the first time.
Increases the quantity and quality of practice
Less time spent erasing means more time actively drawing. Quality improves as each stroke is thought out before it's placed, instead of being placed and then tweaked.
Allows the speed to capture ideas and inspirations
When sketching people there is no time for corrections, in fact there is often not even enough time for a full sketch. Likewise when sketching a new idea it's best to quickly get it on paper. Then you examine the complete drawing to make broad changes in a second or even third sketch before settling on a composition.
Retains artistic character
There is such a thing as too perfect. The work is overworked. A drawing that looks stiff and overdone. Alternatively the word gestural is used to describe a drawing that was done quickly with passion and feeling. While a gestural drawing is never perfect it is always interesting and emotional.
Imagine a humorous composition in your mind that incorporates a humanoid, a city-scape or landscape and an animal or non-human creature. Don't hold back. Be as imaginative as you can.
Now draw four 3x3 inch boxes. Using a pen sketch out roughly your composition in the first box.
Then look at what you have in the first box. Consider what major compositional changes you want to make. Do you want to move any elements, enlarge or decrease any features. Sketch those changes in the second box.
In the third and fourth box do the same. Looking at the previous sketches what changes do you want to make to the composition.
If you remain unsatisfied continue making new boxes until you have arranged a composition that inspires you. Now this can be made into a finished piece of art, or simply remain as a satisfying series of sketches.
This is my final drawing.
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“The minimum a homeschooler needs to get started painting with acrylics.”
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A shopping list for which paints to buy.
An intro to my teaching methods.
Three progressive lessons.
Three related progressive art challenges.
Directions for use with a CO-OP.