Thursday, October 17, 2013

MCBA Visual Journal Collective October Meeting Reminder

Our regular monthly meeting of the Visual Journal Collective is coming up on  
Monday, October 21st from 7-9 pm. at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts.

As our special guest speaker we will have local Twin Cities artist and creativity coach Briana Goetzen on hand to show us the magic of the Gelli Arts gel printing plate.  Briana's artwork is vibrant and joyful and she is a mirror of that work.  Our meeting is sure to be exciting as Briana will talk with us about using the gel plate in her personal work and demonstrate some techniques for using the plate to create mono-prints and backgrounds (you can watch a brief video that Briana created about using the plate here).
Meeting attendees will then have the opportunity to try the plate for themselves, with some available paints and paper.  It is sure to be a blast!
As usual, we will also have time at the end of the meeting for sharing our current journals.
I hope to see you there!

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Contour Line Practice

In my classroom, we began the school year with a unit on contour line drawing. My students struggle with the idea that everyone can learn to draw and complain for days while we draw cans and shoes. Of course any of them who are honestly trying and taking each day as further practice are awe struck by the fact that they are seeing improvement in their drawings. They also complain about me making them use pen. Relax, draw, stress less about mistakes and be confident in your line, I repeat in my room like a mantra to the young teenagers that are now positive that I am some sort of art monster sent to torture them with shoes and a uniball pen.
Through the days I also tried to draw with them at their tables as much as possible, sometimes just to calm my mind and other times to talk them through tough spots in their own work. As a result, I made this lovely line drawing of my husband's oldest pair of combat boots.  It feels to me like a portrait and is my favorite of the many shoes I drew those first two weeks of school.
I highly recommend a week or two of focused contour line drawing with only a pen and simple subjects like pop cans or shoes. It is like boot camp and after a bout of it with my students I always feel like my skills feel less rusty and more ready to draw anything I may feel the need to tackle.