Making new art (or who am I and what did I do with the real me?)

My Xmas tree
Not bad for a first attempt, huh?

My Winter Solstice gift to myself – using money which was someone else’s Christmas gift to me – was a small sketchbook and some pens. The goal was to give myself a place where by definition things could not be perfect. Pens can’t be erased. Any mistakes (like when I got the year wrong in the date of my first picture above) would have to stay.

I want to encourage myself to relax more with my pictures. The pens I got both draw quickly and dry quickly. The goal is to make pictures that are more about capturing a moment and not about obsessing with being perfect.

Mac curled up on the arm of the couch
If I tried to draw Mac perfectly, it would never happen.

Something like this is huge for me. The fear of doing things wrong can be paralyzing. People who have read the blog so far know that my perfectionism/mental stuff can take the form of freaking out when Willow eats the banana, lunchtime be damned, because OMG BANANAS ARE FOR LUNCHTIME FOR A REASON AND IF YOU EAT TOO SOON YOU’LL HAVE DONE IT WRONG AND STARVE!!!

Here there’s no choice. Except the choice to accept that the style is quick, and messy, and not about being photo-realistic.

Luna at my feet

The first attempt at drawing Luna (on the left) is definitely a statement to living with less than ideal results.

It’s a sign of huge progress for me to attempt this sort of thing. Heck, when I started I accidentally skipped a page between the first and second drawings. So the third picture, this one of Luna, went on page 2 even though that meant the dates were out of order. Those of you who understand perfectionism understand why this is a big deal. Those of you who don’t should just accept that even being aware of this sort of thing is a sign of what perfectionism can do to you.

I’ve only done these three pictures so far, but I wanted to share.

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5 Responses to Making new art (or who am I and what did I do with the real me?)

  1. Tori says:

    That’s an awesome idea and I think it’s a big key to accomplishing any form of art: give yourself permission to mess up and not be perfect, and you’ll get a lot more done than if you sit and stare at a blank page in fear.

    The tree on top is awesome! And the one of Mac is cute. You’re a good artist! I can’t even draw stick figures convincingly.

    • TeaBQ says:

      One of the reasons I like pastels is that if you mess up it’s reasonably easy to find some way to fix it. This is the opposite in that you have to accept the screw ups. But both ways it helps get over that idea that it MUST BE PERFECT OMG.

      Mind you that may be easy for me to say with all of three pen sketches under my belt. ;)

      And thank you. You can see where it gets hard for me to handle faces. The one of Mac would’ve probably been screwed up too if he hadn’t thoughtfully put his paw over his eyes and nose.

  2. Calysta Rose says:

    That’s really amazing. I admire your ability to commit to using pen. I’ve got some journals that I’ve not written in because I get so paranoid about writing things ‘wrong’.

    • TeaBQ says:

      I hear ya. I started using a written diary/journal a few years ago and my first few entries are about me giving myself permission to write whatever I want to in there. The only person who was ever going to see it was me, and yet I still had to do it. Frequently.

  3. Pingback: Art Update | TeaBQ

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