Friday, 20 March 2015

About Drawing Classes...

"The peculiarity of my temper is, ma'am, that I won't be swallowed up alive."
Charles Dickens, "Little Dorrit" 

Sometimes I'm asked about "a few tips on drawing buildings" or "a fast way to learn perspective rules". The only valuable "fast tip" which comes to my mind in such cases is "TAKE ART CLASSES". Yes, for me it's the best way to gain a solid base in drawing. 

Before I started to write this article I made a little Google-search to check out what other people think about attending such classes (just in case my notion was totally contradictory to the generally prevailing). It turned out, that there are surprisingly many (though maybe not SO surprisingly many) opinions maintaining, that attending drawing courses is quite redundant. Why? Because everything can be learned from YouTube videos and internet tutorials totally for free. I decided to test it (oh, how mistrustful I am) and typed "How to draw a cockroach". The browser found over 10.000 results... in a split second... I had no more questions.

Anyway I'm going to insist on my point of view and bring forth those benefits of real-life art classes, which you won't get from Internet:

1. Professional feedback (i.e. comprehensive, constructive criticism) about your own work. The truth is that you may make mistakes/encounter problems other than  the person presenting his/her own work on the Internet. A skillful teacher can notice  weaknesses, which you could never notice yourself, or at least would discover after a longer time.

2. High efficiency. Apparently it's best to learn from your own mistakes, but... mistakes of other course participants can also be very "developing". When you're watching your colleague getting remarks, a metaphorical warning light turns on in your brain. Thereby you become aware of many errors before you'll make them yourself. What a time saver! Initially, pointing out errors publicly seems slightly... embarrassing. But look at this matter from a different angle: the more remarks you get, the more conclusions you can draw. Furthermore your splendidly bad example will serve your colleagues :) (nope, it wasn't comforting to me either).

3. Necessity of drawing under pressure and awareness that your work will be evaluated. Maybe it doesn't sound like "oh so fun", but it helps to develop more "responsible" attitude to drawing. And it's not as unpleasant as it seems (though, after that, drawing at home is a pure relax).

4. It helps you to accustom yourself with  presenting your artworks to a real  audience (even if it consists of your tutors and other participants of the course). It's a completely different feeling from putting a drawing on the Internet. It also teaches you to accept criticism with dignity (i.e. you're able to hold back bursts of crying in front of strangers).

5. New exciting friendships - for many people it's a BIG PLUS to meet individuals with the same interests. Well... as an extremely alienated teenage girl I hadn't benefited from this aspect. In hindsight I  regret it a little, but, as written above, we learn best from our mistakes.

6. Maybe you have some insights on art classes? I'd love to get to know them! 

After rereading first 4 points I got a strange impression, that attending drawing classes can appear as series of stress and humiliation... I have no idea why. But in reality it's not that bad! (in most of cases)
At the end here are some of my works made during art classes (long, long time ago):