Dog

Dog

Friday, 13 May 2022

Packing Your Art Travel Kit

 

Rose Drawing, watercolour and watercolour pencil



Blog 9



The warmer season is a great time to practice drawing. You do not need a lot of equipment, and you can do it anywhere. You only need a sketch pad or book, pencils and an eraser.


I can already hear some of you say that you cannot draw a straight line. The good news is that most natural shapes do not have completely straight lines. The trunk of a tree might look straight from afar, but the closer you get, the more you see that it is irregular.


small sketch from this week
Drawing is like writing: everyone has their unique vision and way of expressing themselves. If ten people draw a subject like a tree, you will get ten different drawings. There is no right or wrong way. The first step is to observe your surroundings. Look for simple shapes (circles, ovals, rectangles, squares, and triangles) and then practice drawing these shapes.


Like everything new, drawing feels uncomfortable at first. Do not be obsessed with the final result but enjoy the process. You might surprise yourself. Look at what you learn about yourself in the process.

 

Challenge yourself and work from nature if possible! Push yourself outside of your comfort zone to get better.


Aside from improving your drawing skills, you will heighten your sense of viewing the world and the beauty of even the small things. You will suddenly make many new observations because you see what you previously overlooked.


If you love to add colour to your artwork, put watercolours or watercolour pencils into your travel kit. Compared to other paint mediums, watercolour is the most portable. It dries fast, and you can easily cover large areas very quickly. You do not even need special watercolour pads. Most sketchpads will handle a quick layer of watercolour if you avoid soaking your pad.


By using watercolours, you can add colour to your sketch, which will be very useful when the colour is what intrigued you to sketch the scenery in the first place. You can capture the mood of the situation. I am just thinking of the beautiful sunsets or sunrises, the mesmerizing greens and blues of the water, menacing dark clouds and sky just before a storm. Consider that the paint dries about three times lighter than the paint you put on the paper.


When you work on-site, keep in mind that the scenery in front of you changes quickly. You are capturing a visual note of what you see. It is easy to get overwhelmed by getting caught up in too much detail. Therefore, ask yourself why you want to draw a scene, then focus on that.


It doesn't matter if anyone but you can relate to your sketch. It is just for you, not to impress others. You want to capture the mood of the situation rather than the realistic technical drawing. The more you practice, the better your observational skills will get. You will appreciate the stunning world around you even more. You will suddenly see things that you never noticed. Over time, your sketchpad will become a journal reflecting what is important to you and your vision of your environment.


Due to my five-week stay in Germany, I will take a blogging break until mid-July. If you enjoyed this blog and would like to get more information about what's going on in my business, I encourage you to sign up for my bi-weekly newsletter on my website www.KerstinPeters.ca. When you subscribe, you will automatically receive my free e-book, I Am Ready To Paint But Where Do I Start? which will be replaced with a needle felting resource soon.

Friday, 6 May 2022

Blog-free Week

The First Daffodil, acrylic, 12" x 12", CAN $350

It looks like the warm weather has finally reached the Ottawa area. The daffodils are blooming, and the Tulip Festival will start the following weekend. Next week, I will publish the final blog before my vacation. I will write a post about art supplies you can easily take on vacation. Due to my five-week stay in Germany, I will take a blogging break until mid-July.

I wish you a wonderful weekend! Happy Mother's Day to all mothers of human or animal children!



Friday, 29 April 2022

Straight Lines Are Not a Prerequisite

Periods of Time, wool , 9” x 12”

 

Blog 8


It always breaks my heart to hear from people who feel not artistic because they cannot even draw a straight line. I always tell them that this is only necessary for architects and similar professions that design manufactured objects. Where do you find straight lines in nature? Look around you and let me know what you discover.


I love the work of Antoni Gaudi, a Spanish architect who tried throughout his life to copy nature’s rounded forms in his buildings. We are the ones who create straight lines and symmetry. Nature’s shapes are much more fluid and curved. Therefore, drawing a straight line is not a prerequisite to creating art.


The problem is not that you cannot draw a straight line. The problem is that you compare yourself to the work of others and put pressure on yourself, expecting a specific result. But art is not mathematics. Art is subjective and emotional.


However, pressure creates apprehension. Instead of enjoying the process, the feel of the brush or pencil in your hand, the softness of the material, and the excitement about creating something that you want to express, you freeze and get frustrated. You focus on the result and forget to enjoy the process. If you have ever been on a long trip, you know that it is much more enjoyable if you are excited about the journey and not only the final destination.


I want to encourage you to pick up a regular pencil and draw simple shapes (circles, squares, ovals, etc.) that overlap without thinking about any form you want to create. After a while, look at the map of lines on your paper. Then, start filling some areas with colour or different shades of grey. Not having specific materials should never prevent you from creating art. The more you use your materials, the more ideas you get. You are increasing your creativity by being more creative. This skill will also help you in other areas of your life where you need innovative solutions to a problem. Maybe you want to listen to your favourite music to get inspired or enjoy retreating to a quiet spot. Once you feel more comfortable, you will reach a point when you are in the moment and forget everything around you.


Do I suggest that everyone will be happy with doodling and drawing? Absolutely not. I recommended the above exercise because most people have pencils at home. I wanted to show you that you can create things. Maybe, you will fall in love with pencils. Maybe what you thought you would enjoy is not a medium or technique that suits your personality.


Therefore, instead of going out and feeling overwhelmed in an art store, find out if you can get a starter kit or beginner workshop, or ask friends to show you and perhaps experiment with their materials. If you have questions, send me an email to info@kerstinpeters.ca. I will help you figure out your next steps to exploring your creativity.


It always breaks my heart to hear from people who feel not artistic because they cannot even draw a straight line. I always tell them that this is only necessary for architects and similar professions that design manufactured objects. Where do you find straight lines in nature? Look around you and let me know what you discover.

 

Detail from Gaudí's La Sagrada Familia, Barcelona
I love the work of Antoni Gaudí, a Spanish architect who tried throughout his life to copy nature’s rounded forms in his buildings. We are the ones who create straight lines and symmetry. Nature’s shapes are much more fluid and curved. Therefore, if you cannot draw a straight line, that’s the best premise to create art.


The problem is not that you cannot draw a straight line. The problem is that you compare yourself to the work of others and put pressure on yourself, expecting a specific result. But art is not mathematics. Art is subjective and emotional.


However, pressure creates apprehension. Instead of enjoying the process, the feel of the brush or pencil in your hand, the softness of the material, and the excitement about creating something that you want to express, you freeze and get frustrated. You focus on the result and forget to enjoy the process. If you have ever been on a long trip, you know that it is much more enjoyable if you are excited about the journey and not only the final destination.


I want to encourage you to pick up a regular pencil and draw simple shapes (circles, squares, ovals, etc.) that overlap without thinking about any form you want to create. After a while, look at the map of lines on your paper. Then, start filling some areas with colour or different shades of grey. Not having specific materials should never prevent you from creating art. The more you use your materials, the more ideas you get. You are increasing your creativity by being more creative. This skill will also help you in other areas of your life where you need innovative solutions to a problem. Maybe you want to listen to your favourite music to get inspired or enjoy retreating to a quiet spot. Once you feel more comfortable, you will reach a point when you are in the moment and forget everything around you.


Do I suggest that everyone will be happy with doodling and drawing? Absolutely not. I recommended the above exercise because most people have pencils at home. I wanted to show you that you can create things. Maybe, you will fall in love with pencils. Maybe what you thought you would enjoy is not a medium or technique that suits your personality.


Therefore, instead of going out and feeling overwhelmed in an art store, find out if you can get a starter kit or beginner workshop, or ask friends to show you and perhaps experiment with their materials. If you have questions, send me an email to info@kerstinpeters.ca. I will help you figure out your next steps to exploring your creativity.

Friday, 22 April 2022

Blog-free Week

 

By The River, acrylic on birch board, 14" x 11", CAN $375



Summer Outlook


I booked my flight to Germany and will be gone from the Victoria Day weekend until the end of June. I have never taken such a long time off. It is a little scary to leave work for so many weeks, but I want to concentrate on my family and friends after more than 30 months of separation.


To have enough time to prepare everything I need to do before I leave, I postponed the two-session Beautiful Flower workshop to Monday, July 18 and 25, 2022, from 6 pm to 8 pm. If you want to learn needle felting and love flowers, you can benefit from the early bird price by registering by June 1, 2022. For more information, go to https://www.kerstinpeters.ca/eventscourses/.


What other workshops interest you? Would you be interested in meeting in a park or in our backyard during the summer? If so, please send me an email to info@KerstinPeters.ca.


You can still connect with me for a virtual coffee date. Please book a coffee date with me here. If you live in the Ottawa area, we might even be able to meet in person.


For private events for your family and friends, please send me an email to info@KerstinPeters.ca. I will gladly organize a party or workshop for you. However, I will only offer in-person events outdoors. All other events will be virtual.