Hillside Gardens Apartments, ink & watercolor

Hillside Gardens Apartments, ink & watercolor

…keep drawing! After feeling so rusty sketching at the county fair I was determined to get my drawing juju back. I knew the only way to find it was to draw more.

I tried sketching at the El Cerrito 4th of July festival (see below) but was all thumbs again. Since I couldn’t make a decent sketch myself, I bought a really nice one at the festival’s art show from my friend Ikuko who had a booth there.

I decided to try again on the walk  home. The Hillside Garden Apartments (at top of post) is an ongoing renovation project and labor of love by the owner to convert an old rundown motel into beautifully landscaped apartments. He and the apartment manager were driving by and saw me standing on the corner sketching. They parked and came  to see what I doing and we had a nice neighborly chat with much mutual admiration.

Can't Draw; Ink, watercolor, colored pencil

Can't Draw; Ink, watercolor, colored pencil (click to enlarge)

Back home I continued drawing. I was happy with this sketch of a rose from my garden (below) but lost focus and overworked the watercolor. So the next day I played around with adding gouache, not worrying about getting the colors “right” since the rose had completely changed anyway.

Love the (Artist) You're With; Ink, gouache & watercolor

Love the (Artist) You're With; Ink, gouache & watercolor

Then I wrote myself a little pep talk around the rose, concluding that even if my drawing wasn’t all I wanted it to be, I could at least stop being so self-critical and, to re-phrase the old Crosby, Stills & Nash song: “If you can’t (yet) be the artist you love, then love the one you’re with!”

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Category:
Drawing, Flower Art, Gouache, Ink and watercolor wash, Life in general, Painting, Places, Rose, Sketchbook Pages
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Join the conversation! 23 Comments

  1. Oh your rose is delightful – I always find them a tricky flower to draw. Your crisis of confidence rings a bell with me too – and you’re so right – just getting back to actually doing some drawing is good!

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    • Yep, crisis of confidence is exactly what it is. It was fun to pop over to your blog and see your recent posts addressing similar creative ruts. Thanks for taking time to leave a comment! Jana

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  2. Dear Jana:thank you for your advices.Your enthusiasm is what I need to go on
    drawing despite my shortcomings.Beautiful drawings are a joy for ever!That rose
    of yours tells me you area master.

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  3. Great blog post – and a really lovely rose!

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  4. It’s so true – the way back to art is the way through art, which is keeping going at the art! The last few months I’ve been recovering from breaking my right wrist and having a metal plate put in it – not nice, but a permanently dodgy wrist would have been worse. I’ve worked and worked to get my drawing mojo back; recently I’m beginning to see my sketches loosen up and look passable again, and giving fervent prayers of thanks!

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    • Oh Imogen, How awful to have broken your wrist. I imagine it must have been a real challenge to get your drawing and writing abilities back. I hope your wrist is all fine now. Jana

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  5. I love the garden apartment, and the gouache rose turned out very nicely! Love the pep talk and I’m bookmarking it for the next time I can’t paint/draw/sew/whatever. Those times are never very far apart! Now I’ll just have to cue myself WWJ(ana)D!

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  6. Not that I can draw or anything, but I often find that being unable to do something means that I am tired or overwhelmed and just cannot focus. So getting back into the groove (by ‘acting as if’) often works for me, no matter what the subject!

    AND I love the rose!

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    • Thanks Gwendolyn, You’re absolutely right about being tired and overwhelmed leading to lack of focus, which of course then leads to a big mess. Sometimes acting as if works for me too. Jana

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  7. It is amazing to me how quickly I can lose my groove in drawing! I will be happy for a while, able to capture things quickly and accurately. If I paint for several days in a row without a lot of sketching mixed in, POOF!, the groove is gone and I have to work to get it back!! Elusive creature it is!

    Love your rose and apartment!

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    • I’m so glad to hear I’m not the only one that gets lost in the painting, forgets the drawing and then loses the groove. Fortunately, elusive as it might be, it is findable with a little practice. Jana

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  8. Always love your contributions and encouragements. Of course, your lesson is translatable into all areas of life. In fact, just today, I spent time this morning meditating on the importance of being obedient to higher aspirations and developing habits to attain what my heart desires. I find the discipline of art to further efforts in all other areas too. I am grateful to have found your blog. …all things work to the good…only believe.

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    • Thanks for your kind and inspiring words. I especially appreciated the idea of “developing habits to attain what my heart desires.” It’s true that it takes discipline to attain them and often for me that discipline is about making choices about the way I spend my time, trying to avoid distractions that are so easy to fall into. Jana

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  9. Well, I think that rose is quite beautiful. And made more so by the writing around it. Keep on drawing! The Camp Host Housewife (and Photographer and Writer). Come visit when you can – http://levonnesprettypics.blogspot.com

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  10. Myjo jo drawing has been a daily task forme there are days I;m doing well then I go to sleep and poof the drawing fairy comes and takes the drawing thing away. Since Im teaching my self I ask why is this? Its frustrating and not only that but the drawing crtic comes along and is telling me all these not so good things,I try to quiet him but there are days where he just wont be quit. So glad you had this it makes me see we all need to do those three P’s of practice daily.

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  11. I just happened upon your post because I was searching ‘Hydrangeas” in images and saw your paintings, so I came to your blog and started looking around. ☺

    This post is encouraging to me; just last evening I was working on trying to draw again and was doing very badly. I used to draw often, but I have not drawn in a long time and feel very rusty, as if I lost any talent I had.

    I often feel discouraged when I look at the fabulous work of others, wanting to do something better myself. Your post was just what I needed to read. Thanks for the inspiration! ☺

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  12. I gotta tell ya I LOVE this one! We all get the drawing poopy sometimes don’t we? Thanks!

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  13. I’m a stay-at-home-mom who feels like she’s lost her talent throughout all the diaper changes, lunch-making, and other life events. Drawing was such an outlet and confidence booster for me when I was in high school. The last time I was able to make a painting was in 2011. I am proud of it now, as it hangs in my daughter’s room. But my practicing should be more of a common things around here, and I would like to make that happen.

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