With apologies to Bob Ross for the title of this post, this week I thought I’d showcase a recent sketch of mine that I scanned into the computer:
The tree is mostly composed of simple leaf and branch shapes (similar to a crape myrtle tree). Not the most original thing in the world, perhaps, but this picture works for me on several levels:
- It’s mine–I didn’t have to borrow artwork from someone else like usual
- I didn’t have to worry about every leaf and twig being in EXACTLY the right place, because it looks better as an imperfect form anyway
- The sketch ended up pretty much how I wanted it, for just about the first time in my life
P.S.: Why This Isn’t a Color Picture
This picture isn’t colored in, because usually when I start trying to color my pictures by hand, I end up with something that looks worse than kindergarten. Crayons are too heavy and waxy, colored pencils are too light (takes too long to build up enough color), and markers are too permanent. (And we just won’t talk about the tragedy of my painting skills here. XD) Not to mention that “staying in the lines” is just about impossible for me and my impatient hands.
I did try to color this picture using Photoshop’s Paint Bucket too, but I found it much too hard to color in with a laptop mouse! I couldn’t stand the thought of having to click a hundred thousand times so precisely to fill in all those little leaves, so I quit after a few pointless minutes of accidentally filling the whole canvas with green. Sad.
Pencil + Paper = Fun
My difficulties with coloring is why I enjoy the impromptu ease of a simple pencil sketch. You don’t have to have any special tools–just about any kind of paper except notebook paper and any kind of pencil will do. You can also do this sketch anywhere; out in the wilderness, at your desk while avoiding homework, in bed watching TV. I also really love the ability to do subtle shading with a pencil, which is easier to control than a charcoal stick (for me). Plus,
if when I screw up, there’s a handy little eraser.
This is my first pencil sketch in a long time, and I’m hoping it won’t be my last! Let me know what you think about this first attempt after a long, LONG time of staying away from visual art!