By Gail Dokucu
As much as I love my art practice, occasionally I feel like I’ve hit a wall.
It seems that all motivation and creativity have evaporated. I’m sure a lot of you have had a similar experience. I’m a big fan of Skillshare classes so I thought I’d share an exercise I learned last winter that helped get me back on track.
This exercise came from a class taught by one of my favorite teachers, Ohn Mar Win. While she’s not an urban sketcher, she does have a strong sketchbook practice and several of her classes center around sketchbooks.
Ohn Mar Win “Daily Art Practice: 14 Day Mindset Challenge
Ohn Mar’s process is pretty simple:
- Every day, spend 6 minutes sketching one object. Set a timer when you start; if you draw the object once and still have time left, start again from a different angle.
- At the end of the 6 minutes, take a break, then come back to the sketch and do a short critique: What worked? What didn’t? Did you enjoy the process or tool?
- Each day use a different tool - various pencils, pens and paints.
Keep Going!At the end of the first 14 days, I decided that I wanted to spend more time exploring various brush pens. For each 14 day period, I chose a different brush pen - Pitt B, Pitt SB, Pentel ArtBrush, Pentel Pocket Brush and Tombow Fudenosuke - and stuck with it for the whole period.
- I found I had a strong preference for very soft, flexible brush pens like the Pitt SB or the Pentel Pocket Brush.
- Sometimes I avoid sketching because I don’t have much free time, but I found 6 minutes to be a sweet spot that I could get to every single day.
- Having the list premade helped keep me on track too - no time spent each day trying to decide on a subject.
- While these were not urban sketches, the process certainly benefited my urban sketching practice. It kept me sketching during a period of low motivation so that my hands didn’t forget how to sketch.
- And the brush pens felt unwieldy at first, after 3 months I got so comfortable with them that they are now one of my favorite tools.
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