100 Day Art Project
Have you heard of the 100 Day Art Project? Apparently it started as an assignment by Michael Beirut, a graphic design professor at Yale. I was completely oblivious until I read about it in a weekly SAQA eBlast this time last year. So, on February 1, 2020 I committed to doing a pencil drawing a day for 100 days, perhaps not all in a row, but as often as I could. One of the silver linings of the pandemic was only six weeks into the project I was sheltering in place, with all my travel plans canceled. So, instead of drawing between trips and events, I actually created a pencil drawing every single day for 100 days in a row. I even posted them on my instagram account.
Rules are Guidelines
I highly recommend joining the 100 Day Art Project this year. It starts on Sunday, January 31st. I have a caveat I find useful. It is, “my project, my rules and rules are just guidelines”. I very quickly turned from drawing my original designs to following tutorials available through multiple YouTube accounts. I found these by googling “how to draw step by step for beginners”.
Once the 100 days were up, I was so enamored with having a regular drawing practice, I have continued it. Once again, following my own rules. Instead of a drawing a day, I do a drawing a week. This allows me to take my time and really get into the drawing/tutorial.
Why Stop Now?
What surprised me, isn’t that my drawing improved. I expected that. It is how much it improved and how confident I have become. Recently, I have started to include drawings done with just the basics drafted with pencil, then the majority done in fine point Sharpie. The drawings have sharpened my understanding of perspective, including how to use one and two point perspective, but also atmospheric perspective. Many drawings have involved faces. So, my ability to draw eyes, mouth, nose and even hair has improved.
Why spend time drawing when my media is fiber art? Simple. The connection is art. Drawing slows the understanding of how the various elements of design come together. It is has honed my knowledge of shadow and highlights, balance, the need for a focal point, and so much more.
I am linking up with Nina Marie’s Off the Wall Fridays.