Monday Sketches {Back to Basics}

After spending a long weekend with four of my heART sisters at a private retreat, I came home on creative fire!  Renewed with energy, vigor, self-worth and confidence in my artistic capabilities; I decided to get back to basics . . . where it all started for me . . . my trusty sketchbook and the foundation of the principles of art.  I reviewed old lessons and realized how much my art has evolved over the years but in the back of my mind, I could hear the same word over and over . . . "practice."


With my self-diagnosed "Art ADD," I realized that I was guilty of jumping from project to project and medium to medium.  I never took the time to perfect anything and I am always struggling to determine who I am as an artist.  While I do believe that no artist should limit themselves . . . we always need to be stretching and flexing those right brain muscles . . . but at the same time, each artist is {or should be} recognized by their own style.  And since I haven't really 'settled' on a style, I decided I would go back to the "drawing" table, so to speak, and "practice."  So while I will still be splattering paint and ink and gesso and plaster, I have decided that I will spend quiet time every week "practicing" what I probably love best . . . sketching, drawing, smudging, blending and getting lost in my sketchbook.  And here is my sketch for today . . .



The Sketchbook Project 2012


In keeping with my New Year's Resolutions (which I ALWAYS make, but NEVER fulfill), I participated in the 2012 Sketchbook Project and actually FINISHED the book and postmarked it on time!  This in itself was a huge accomplishment for me.  I've signed up three years in a row but never actually completed my book.  It was a lofty goal, but also I think what stopped me in the past was putting my artwork out there for the world to see and judge.  I felt vulnerable and exposed and always struggled with the feeling that, "I'm not good enough." So the real resolution was to get over that feeling--I am not the BEST artist and I am not the WORST artist.  I am good ENOUGH.  I'm learning to love that word . . . ENOUGH.

If you don't know about the Sketchbook Project, read more about it here. I know there are a lot of people who don't like the idea that the book goes out but never comes back and I admit I felt that way in the beginning, but after a lot of contemplation, I realized that art is meant to be shared.  Art does not speak to anyone or move anyone or effect anyone if it is not SHARED.  I would love to have kept my sweet little book but I had to let it go in order for it to have real meaning to me.  So I kissed it goodbye, and sent it out into the world to hopefully inspire at least one person. That's what Art means to me!

Here's a peek into my Sketchbook Project Journal . . .

My Completed SketchbookOpen HeartI Dreamed . . .ExpectationsYay! I did it! I really did it!

Sketchbook Project 2012

What if you could submit your artwork to an organization to be exhibited and it would not be turned down?  What if you were told it would be displayed and it would travel and it would be SEEN and there would be no judge or jury--only people who would appreciate it and admire it?  What if you knew your art work would become a permanent part of an exhibit where generations to come could potentially see your talent?  If you knew all of that, wouldn't you submit your work?  Wouldn't you just put it out there?  Well, guess, what?  You CAN do all of the above and there is still a little time left to get your Sketchbook.  The Sketchbook Project is sponsored by The Art-House Co-op.  Check out their website and sign up so you can share your art with the world!

I've started mine--here are a few pictures of the process . . .