Actually... I probably think stuff like "am I doing this right? Maybe I am. Maybe I'm not. Uhhh... Didn't turn out very well. That'll have to do. Wow, that's awesome! I'm a genius. Hmm... Maybe that wasn't so good after all." Etc.
"oh shit that looks wrong" "oh god now it looks worse" "what the hell is it supposed to be I cant even tell anymore" "oooh that one line looks nice" "nope now I cant see it through all of the corrections" "hey look I made flurmrmermemr"
I think about things, but they don't turn into words. I know I'm kind of focusing on color, tone, line, shape, statement, all that -- but I don't actually think in words. It's kind of a static hum that goes on when I'm in the middle of drawing or painting.
Probably why I have to listen to music when getting started; after about 5-10 minutes I don't even notice when the music stops playing. After about 3-4 hours the hum stops and it feels like waking up from some kind of sleep, and then I go grab coffee.
.....that sounds incredibly nutty now that I think of it. Maybe that makes me an amateur
squelching acid loops
sb most art copied to page 1
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I had an unusual experience tonight. This girl, one of my wife's friends, asked me for my thoughts on a relationship matter, while I was sitting on the couch drawing stuff in front of me. I don't know her that well and I can be a little rigid and awkward when I talk to girls anyway, so my drawing hand went into nervous autopilot mode as I tried to think and talk to her without sounding stupid. It went on for some time, until after I got done giving her my thoughts, I looked down and realized I had drawn almost the entire living room without realizing it.
I wanted to be like, "Can you come by every day and ask me questions? This is great practice!"
And then God said, "Let us make man in our likeness and our image. Let us make him ridiculously hard to draw so that poor artists everywhere will have to spend 10,000+ hours failing repeatedly before they can begin to capture the form and likeness onto a two-dimensional surface." And there was man. And it was good. And artists everywhere lost their minds.
I tend to bounce between "Oh this is better than I thought it would be," and "Sweet Jesus, where's my eraser?"
"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."
Lao-tzu, Chinese philosopher (604 BC - 531 BC)
@Medelo This is my experience too, I try so hard not to autopilot but sometimes it happens anyway, and when I snap out of it I realize I finished the whole picture
I'm not really qualified to judge your art because my skills< your skills but I looked at your sketchbook, it's good!
@brian thanks for posting this! I can't talk when I draw (too distracting, might say something rude by accident) and can't draw when I talk(turns off my observation mode ) Just because you said this though, I am going to try to lifedraw something while I carry on a conversation and see what the final pic looks like.
A smooth sea never made a skillful sailor.
Human beings, who are almost unique in having the ability to learn from the experience of others, are also remarkable for their apparent disinclination to do so."
I'm not sure Geoff Colvin's theory is right. In fact, if I was going to theorize something I'd say the opposite. Having been a beginner at everything from running to martial arts to drawing, in the beginning you're aware of everything and everything has to be done consciously, which makes things very awkward. The further you go the more tasks you can automate, so your decisions can happen on a higher level of abstraction. You no longer need to think about how to do a punch for example, so you're free to think about your overall strategy.
I think with my hands sometimes when I am drawing, I use them to help me visualize. Also i'm usually thinking things like "Why do those little white dots keep ruining my values? What am I doing wrong?", "How the hell would a light source hit this, wait what is my light source? (When drawing from imagination)", and the occasional, and always so sweet: "Awwww snap! This is fun! And it looks good!". Also sometimes I realize how much better I have gotten when I work, and it makes me feel good.
-Alex Lee Davis
If I remember correctly, he was only talking about the specific case of breaking the plateau (should have mentioned it earlier but I didn't remember). They advance their skill (almost automatically by just putting in mileage) and then cannot go any further because they are automating/not paying attention/unable to execute specific things that enable them to break the plateau (higher abstractions) , such as strategy.
But either of you may be right. It is just a theory after all!
On a similar note, in the same book he discusses the concept of "deliberate practice" for some length as well (that good practice must adhere to a set of criteria and will probably not be fun, but doing it will make you great). Which has been proven multiple times here
I'm relatively certain Jimmy Page doesn't think about playing the guitar when he's on stage...I imagine he goes somewhere else. Of course that is performance rather than visual recording so the analogy may not hold.
I think it is a combination of "autopilot" at certain stages (once you have progressed to the point where technical application is second nature) and deliberate, intentional mark making and analysis mainly toward the finish. But it takes years of effort to get to that place.
JeffX99 may have hit on something. Lots of things have "practice" mode and "performance" mode. Football practice is not the same as a football game. Martial arts class is not the same as fighting. Your sketchbook is not the same as a finished piece.