Ignoring The Experts: Is It A Mistake Or Is It Your Style?

Several people who have seen my sketchbook have commented on my graphic drawing style. I’m astonished to learn I have a style at all. I just draw what makes sense to me.

When I took a drawing class in the 90s, the teacher kept nagging me about my non-existent backgrounds. I drew an object or figure with no setting at all and despite the teacher’s nagging, continued to do so. I did the same with my recent assignments for Sketchbook Skool. The only exception was my kitchen drawing, which was hyper-detailed because that was the point of the exercise.

Backgrounds are overrated. (The note is wrong. Actually, it's a small glass sculpture by Cleo Dunsmore Buchanan; Drawing by Kit Dunsmore)
Backgrounds are overrated. (The note is wrong. Actually, it’s a glass sculpture by Cleo Dunsmore Buchanan; Drawing by Kit Dunsmore)

Drawing an object without a background is not a mistake, but a choice. I draw what catches my attention, what I notice, what feels important to me. That is how I discover my style, my voice.

There were more chairs, more people, loads of stuff beyond what I drew, but this was the part that caught my attention. (Drawing by Kit Dunsmore)
There were more chairs, more people, loads of stuff beyond what I drew, but this was the part that caught my attention. (Drawing by Kit Dunsmore)

Be brave. Do what feels right. Make choices. Do not let anyone tell you it’s a mistake or that you did it wrong. As long as it was your intent, then it’s all right, even if you don’t like the results. You are allowed to say, “That didn’t work.” Just remember, it’s not a mistake if you did it on purpose.

Author: Kit Dunsmore

Kit is a writer and an artist who adores living in Colorado. Whether she's hiking in the mountains or walking the prairies, she's always watching the wildlife in order to learn more about the natural world.

2 thoughts on “Ignoring The Experts: Is It A Mistake Or Is It Your Style?”

  1. It’s very interesting, the point you make and I fully agree. ‘Teachers’ can truly put off the budding learner, when it’s nurturing and practice that is really required. Also, I think nowadays, teachers probably do have a much more open view to style than when I went to art school and was often knocked back with the styles I was developing – many years on I wish I had had the strength of mind to do what I felt worked, it’s taken all this time to develop that confidence.

    Like

    1. Developing our style is a lifelong process assuming we keep stretching. In the end, we need to be our own best nurturer as well as a clear-eyed self-critic. It’s a hard balance to achieve.

      Like

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s