I've been a little - okay, a lot! - busy with Pikaland's Making Your Mark e-course. It's a course that promises to help you find or investigate your personal style in various ways, and so far that's true. There is a new assignment every week, and there is plenty of room to stretch yourself, if you choose to. It's interesting! Last week I had to create an image from a combination of one item on a list of things I KNOW and one item off a list of things I LOVE, and then recreate that image in both pen & ink and collage! It was a total challenge, especially to get it all finished within a week ;) But I did, and I love the way it coaxed me out of my comfort zone - especially the black and white image that was supposed to include tones and values. Man, tones and values are hard! I knew that, I've only just begun trying to add more light and shadows to my watercolour pieces, but then to decide whether red is lighter than blue, and how to represent that in ink lines? Hard!
Here is what I did in my 'medium of choice'. My 'items' were "I LOVE going outside with my kid on his balance bike - he's given me new eyes and a new lease on wonder", and "I KNOW my kid is half South-African". The elephant was annoying - I miscoloured it, then re-coloured it, which didn't work as well as I'd hoped, and then I tried to rescue the whole blessed overworked thing with coloured pencils. Let's just say he's got a skin condition and be done with it ;) And let's say I'm able to draw an elephant that looks like an elephant, because in the end, that impressed me most :D As well as how I drew my kid :D Sure, there is something not quite right with his hairline, but hey - we all need areas of practise, right?! ;)
This week's assignment will be fun too, I think and hope! We were meant to go to a museum or art gallery, and revisit an existing work of art. And while that sounds like fun (can't remember the last time I went to a museum - shame on me!), I don't really see when I could be doing that and finish some art work before Monday. And then I remembered (funny how these things work, really!) that there is a whole ado around here about a couple of months that Claude Monet spent in Zaandam back in 1871! I investigated and found out there is a little book about it, so I went out and got that - and there are quite a couple of surprises there :D But I won't spoil the fun just yet - I'll post about that when I'm able to illustrate my findings ;)
Yes, I'm enjoying MYM, for sure! I love a good challenge! I am a little disappointed in the lacking sense of community there though. After both assignments, I've been going out of my way to find something constructive to say about each and every piece of art work posted - because I feel that's part of the deal, and because I enjoy seeing what others come up with, for inspiration and at times awe, but hardly anyone bothers to come back and do the same. Apart from Koosje & Jodi - much appreciated :) Of course that is what it is, but in the end, I feel I've paid a lot of money for just a challenge and some feedback from the course's creators - who don't come back for a bit of dialogue either. But it is what it is. All that said and paid for, I will enjoy the challenge, and see what I can get out of Monet in Zaandam. Because honestly? I probably never would have investigated what the ado was about if it wasn't for MYM :)
Are you straying outside your comfort zone in any way? I'd love to hear and see!!