Some thoughts about meditating with a pen in your hand and the world for a head. 🌏✒️🧠
About failure and being a robot. I wanted to be a robot too. But since my efforts to become a machine were inextricably complicated, I accepted failure and the pleasure of the experience. The journey rather than the result.
When it comes to life drawing, I would say I am more versatile. AI has recently helped me unleash my creativity as much as I take my inspiration from what is out there, outside. Deadlines sometimes force us to take shortcuts.
I spend so much time encouraging my students to sketch from life, and create opportunities for them to do so. I think many of them enjoy the experience, but their commitment to that activity is probably similar to what you describe from your art college days. So it fills me with joy to know you have returned to doing observational drawing, Simon. Personally, I get so much of that wonderful meditative state experience you describe when I'm plein air painting, that I can't say enough about how much I value it. Something about being hyperaware of your presence in that moment... you are interpreting not just the visual, but sound and smell as well. And because you are so intently focused, the world you're observing becomes so much more ... 'substantial'. Tiny things - the edge of a cloud, the call of a bird - that are normally passed over on a busy day - suddenly take on profound meaning. All that sensory information returns as memory when you look at the painting later - a very gratifying experience. Incidentally, to tie all this to the world of commercial art and design: observational drawing/painting is not unlike what I call "doing field research" in the early stages of a client project. Actually going out on location rather than googling some photo reference is imo so important to the creative process on a professional level as well as a personal one. Thanks for another wonderful post!