Over the weekend, I was pleased to discover several art classes offered at public libraries throughout Boston. Yesterday I went to the first of four classes offered by local artist, Elisa Solignac, at the Charlestown Public Library. Lest anyone think I might have some drawing ability (at least not without instruction), this class demonstrated my lack of innate ability. It’s a good thing I’m teachable.
We started with a couple of drawing exercises. After repeatedly telling us to take a close look at the still life she’d composed, she covered it and asked us to draw it from memory. I have no clue as to the purpose of that exercise, unless perhaps it was to see how we drew something we couldn’t see.
The next exercise was one of my favorite types of exercises: we were to draw the still life without looking at the paper. I often seem to do better when I’m looking at the form rather than the paper. The exercise works well if you’re drawing a single object–e.g. a hand or model–but not so much for a multi-item still life.
We were then told to paint the composition. The only instruction we were given is that light blue and purple are useful for shadows when something is white. I wouldn’t expect a beginning watercolor to feature so much white (table cover and bowl were both white and the bottle was clear) and multi-level no less.
I was really looking forward to the class but left kind of frustrated. Unfortunately there was no instruction. I heard someone comment to another that when they took the same class last year with the same instructor, at the end everyone felt they got at least one thing from the class, as if that was a consolation. I won’t be able to make the next class; whether or not I return for the final two classes remains in the air. At least I learned one thing…I’m seriously in need of instruction on perspective!
Up next in about an hour…figure drawing with Elle!