Andy Goldsworthy, enviromental sculptor stated “The essence of drawing is the line exploring space.”

Andy Goldsworthy is an enviromental/nature sculptor creates sculptures that are often fleeting.  His sculptures really embodies the exploration of art and line in nature.  He has amazing vision.  I recommend his books and videos of his work.  The ones that show him working are especially great.  Be inspired by him to look more closely around you for drawing or nature inspiration (even if you are not an artist!). When drawing or sketching outside look for those lines or paths created in nature visually.  They are there, just look closely. Make it a goal when looking for drawing inspiration to find…

Cezanne once wrote, “The sunlight here is so intense that it seems to me that objects are silhouetted not only on black and white but also in blue, red, brown, and violet.”

    As the weather gets better many artists’ head outside to paint and draw.   The Impressionists are typically thought of as the first painters to paint outside.  However famous painter Turner who predates the Impressionists did paint outside.  He even had a boat outfitted so he could paint from the boat in plein air style.   Two different things helped the Impressionists’ on their quest to paint the natural fleeting light of nature.  One was the the concept of contrast in complementary colors developed in the 19th century by the chemist Michel-Eugene Chevreul.  The other was the development of new…

Monet once said “For me,a landscape does not exist in its own right, since its appearance changes at every moment”

Monet’s most interesting and fascinating paintings are his series of paintings of specific places done at different times of day.  It really shows how important light and shadow are in drawings and paintings.  Next time your are in a gallery or museum pay close attention to the light in the art work.  Try to guess what time of day it is!  Seeing is believing!  Monet’s full quote on this subject is enlightening.  Monet said,  “For me, a landscape does not exist in its own right, since its appearance changes at every moment; but the surrounding atmosphere brings it to life…

Rodin once said, “There is no recipe for improving nature. The only thing is to see.”

Recently I was discussing with an enthusiastic group of adults drawing students about really learning to look.   I help them improve their drawings by pointing out subtle details in their reference pictures. I also help with techniques to use to create that look.  One student commented on how amazing things look when you really “see” them.  That is one of the amazing things of learning to draw or paint, it changes how you perceive the world around you !  As the famous sculptor Rodin said once “There is no recipe for improving nature.  The only thing is to see.” Rodin…

Kandinsky once said “The starting point is the study of color and its effects on men

Color is one of the most simple but complicated areas in the art world.  It can change the whole mood of an art work, create depth and perspective, elicit emotions and the list goes on.   Color a circle of color (say red) on a page and surround it with another color.  Then take that same circle of red color and surround it with a totally different color, the red will look like a different red color even though it is not. Artists through time have used color to create their styles, for example Kandinsky focused on blue for a time. …

Matisse said, “It is the imagination that gives depth and space to a picture”

  Matisse exclaimed, “It is the imagination that gives depth and space to a picture.”   For example in the student’s work to the left, they placed their symbols for the main design first.   Next came the free flowing imagination when they experimented with watercolors and water.  The student did not have a plan but put down the watercolors letting them flow together at will.   This ends up being the most striking thing in the composition and the least structured!   So if you are new to art or experienced try to add something free form.  You could just take a paper…

Van Gogh stated,”I sometimes think there is nothing so delightful as drawing.”

Van Gogh’s wonderfully simple pen and ink drawing shows how drawing does not need to be complicated.  Just give it a try!  Here note how Van Gogh used simple lines to create an great drawing of a meadow or field.  Thin and thin lines going different directions make the field look like a meadow of plants.  See how he uses a simple value (dark/light) change to delineate between the foreground and the background.  The narrowing of the field as it goes back creates depth in the drawing another simple technique.  Try drawing with a simple pen, it can do more…