As I was talking about in my last post, it’s odd, but when sketching from life, I feel I’m missing the opportunity to practice my craft, if I’m not trying to give a realistic rendition of an object I’m seeing. Perhaps that’s because the situation is fleeting, and beyond my control, where as drawing from a photo I can revisit the situation over, and over?

I need to practice drawing in various styles while sketching from life, and stop worrying about “lost opportunities”. I need to see them, rather, as chances to “experiment”. It’s a subtle, mental shift, that I don’t think art teachers stress enough, especially when students reach the higher levels. We muddy the waters by using terms like “expression”, as opposed to “experimentation”. For some, this may sound too “high brow”, or as I say “BS”, but if you’ve been thru art school, you may understand exactly what I mean. I equate the differences between the two to be the same as “my kid could do that” and “they’re famous, because they thought of it first”. To me, that’s the difference between “expressing yourself”, and “experimenting” in art.

All that said, it’s still easier to allow myself to play with styles when I’m working from a photo. Here are some sketches, based on pics in reference books, where I tried to work in an anime/manga style.

Something about this bottom one feels very Junji Ito in the face— and that’s not me complaining. I love his work; but if it were really in his style, the apple would be a human head with a bite out of it— or something like that.

As I’ve mentioned the past few times, , the Skyward Kickstarter is still going on! If you, or someone you know, can help out, please check out the site…