Friday, January 10, 2014

Demos: Classroom Caricatures II

Dovetailing with an earlier post re: caricatures (more here, here and a classic post about the master, Tom Richmond), I wanted to follow-up on a recent visit to an art class in a local highschool. After the show & tell of my work + some process and a little about sequential art in general,both the teacher (Robin Feinman) and myself sat down opposite each other to work up a caricature of each other. Some notes below the fold...

Now what in fact made this particular experience interesting was failing miserably with the demo, and not just once but twice, in front of everybody. Call it the worst possible case scenario for an artist doing work out in a public setting and it all just crashes and burns. Well, that unto itself can be an important meta-lesson: spectacular wipeouts in front of a group of students or people can be equally educational to witness, as such nosedives from a supposed professional are instructional, and a part of the process.

Image: excerpt from Stephen McCranie

Enter this poignant piece by artist Stephen McCranie, "Be Friends With Failure" on his fantastic website Doodle Alley. This post came out last year, but went viral on Facebook amongst a circle of artist friends, but I had put off reading it until the same evening I flubbed my caricature demo. And so I now read all ten pages aloud to my Beginning Drawing classes as it spells out simply a wonderful lesson that every artist, aspiring or professional, needs to be reminded of.

To make a long post short, I redeemed myself the next day in the studio by stubbornly reworking my initial attempt, this time on an easel using charcoal, and relying on residual memory. I also was the recipient of a spot-on drawing that truly captured my innermost essence, including my seasonal creative juice of choice, a luscious eggnog latte (w/extra nog) from LuLu's.

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