Friday, September 17, 2010

Up Close and Personal - Early Sketches

Just sitting and contemplating art …. My contribution to the world as an artist …. And the why bother question.

Looking at early sketches I can at least answer the why bother part. I will continue to persue my artistic skills because I want to become the best I can be. Maybe never make the list of the masters….neither the links nor gallery types….but will be my best.

I may never paint again either. I may just keep on drawing, sketching and enjoying the spirit of translating the images I see.

I remember drawing some of my early sketches. I was so concerned about translating the actual form, the space it occupied, the volume, the inner core or nature of the object. When I sketched I would allow my being to penetrate the object, to mentally embrace and 'fee'  with my eyes; as my pencil went into action.

I use the attached drawings to explain what it is I am trying so ineptly to say. I would sketch anything at hand in my home and did a series of plants. I tried to feel the nature of the plant, to recognize the way the leaves filled out, the plane of the leaves and how they caught and reflected light, the way they grew from the stems; tried to articulate the volume of each leaf …. Was it fleshy, coarse, succulent, flat, oval, round. The list continued. And finally I tried to identify the growing behaviour of the plant.

The sketches included here represent my attempt to understand the plants I was drawing. I think in the first two I managed to translate the fleshiness or thickness of the leaves of this particular plant, the pattern of growth in the twisting stems; the space occupied by the plant.  The third plant had velvet surfaced leaves; had some difficulty with this one and still don’t feel I did well, but here it is.

Finally the corn silk plant. Just a small one, some dead leaves. I attempted this one using straight pen and ink. There are areas here I was not satisfied with but didn’t quite know what to do with. I feel if I sketched it today it would be different….but would not equal the first impression captured in this sketch.

This was a happy time of learning for me…a time of learning to ‘see’ and ‘feel’ what I wanted to say with paper, pencil and pen.

I have difficulty translating these interpretations with paint; perhaps I am destined to sketch instead. It is a journey I will continue to explore; and this period of looking back is blazing a trail for me to follow in the future pursuit of my art endeavors. Enjoy.


  1. Hi Ruby, now I am a follower of both your blogs!
    It is amazing how this blogging works. I started with Ralph's and got into Sherry's and now I have found yours! That makes three I follow. I can't sketch at all and my limited drawing ability comes from drawing blueprints for the construction trade. I "paint" a tiny bit, mostly playing because I don't know what I am doing, but I can see I could learn a lot from you! My
    art is with metal, heavy metal at that. I love your other blog and, like Ralph, my high school
    days were a bit hectic, and like Ralph, I was a "high school dropout", and, funniest thing, like Ralph I went back to school and into teaching! I will be following you now and checking up on you every day! I am not so easy to follow as my blog is the one connected to ArtWanted, and now that my cancer is GONE, I don't post on it so often. What is there for me to say? I am still alive! Nice to meet you, Ruby!

  2. I see Jerry has found your blog, good. He has now started a new one on here. Ruby I do not know what has happened but the writing is covering some of the beautiful drawings.

  3. Jerry, thank you for looking at this blog. I too was a high school dropout; but did manage a university degree later in life.
    The roads we take on our journey through life are not always the easy ones are they?
    I do not post every day ... don't always have that much to say. But will try to pay closer attention.
    Thanks again for your comments; truly appreciated.
    ps Long been an admirer of your work!