drawing it out

i started a drawing class this evening.

that statement seems innocuous enough, but it’s actually a pretty big deal. see… that drawing thing. i’ve always wanted to do it. i’ve always felt like there were more forms of artistic expression within me besides writing. writing is great. i love it. but it doesn’t do what i need it to do. it doesn’t get that thing out of my mind and put it on paper the way i want it to look.

anyway. it was basically my worst nightmare in a class format. she told us to just go. she didn’t run any lessons, she didn’t teach us any techniques. she said, “just draw whatever is on your mind. draw like you’re an eight year old.” and that? terrifies me. the theme was landscapes, and i had some bodacious hills in my mind that i wanted to get on paper. so i sketched out my drawing (with a Very Sharp Pencil) on newsprint, and she came over and said, “what is it?”

they were hills.

i firmly believe that i have this in me, somewhere. i think i’m just too bound up in perfectionism to get it out. i’m too afraid of making mistakes. so i drew my timid little hills, with a vast expanse of white above them. and i hated them. they were so wimpy.

so i kept that drawing and used it during the next class, which was a pastels class. and i painted in the lines, and i made blue hills with blue shading. i figured out how to make them roll a little bit. i filled in the sky with white and yellow and peach. i put purple on the tops of the hills. it felt right. i felt more free. it felt more like me.

at the end of the night, i just grabbed a little bit of charcoal and started sketching on a scrap of paper. and i really liked the looks of what was coming out. and i realized…THAT is what my landscape should have looked like. bold and fast and thick with black lines… not intricately, painstakingly sketched pencil-hills.

passionate, not perfect.

i think i just figured something out.

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