My art style and preference has always leaned towards the eclectic. I was introduced to drawing through my grandmother and I helped her in her ceramic shop. I was also exposed to drawing through my mother’s drawings. My uncle was the carver in the family. He carved figures from wood and tree knots and fruit pits.
This enriching and early exposure to different forms of art influenced my eclectic preferences in art. For a long time it was difficult for me to finish art projects because I’d jump from one project, to another and to another. I could never finish one project with so many forms of art waiting for me to try!
At one point I was drawing, painting devils claws, felting wool, painting old toys, and carving bone. With a full-time job on top of too many art projects, it was too much. I learned I had to focus on the two art forms I loved best, with maybe one or two on the side. Practicing this has made it foreseeable for me to finish projects.
My Favorite Art Forms and How They Relate
When I start a drawing, it begins with a sketch on paper. When I start a carving, it begins with a sketch on the piece of antler I will carve. They both use the basic elements of art: line, color, shape, form, value, space, and texture. It is in the creation process and tools that they differ.
Drawing is kinder to my body, though still takes a toll on my hands. Carving takes a lot of physical prep for my body to be able to deal with and recover from. When I draw, it can be silent or it can be with music (I know, I know). I can’t hear anything while carving (except a muffled eeeeeeeeeee)until I reach the sanding and polishing stages. I can simplify my tools for drawing down to pencils, pens, and erasers. Carving tools all depend on what stage in the carving I am at: Dremel with carving bits, tool lube, jeweler’s saw, sand paper of numerous grits, polishing and buffing tools, lots of water, safety hood and ear protection… the list goes on.
Drawings are something I can look at and the high-end reward for me is all visual. Carvings are something I can wear and give to others to hold and feel. As a carving ages, the changes to its colors and patterns are a natural and exciting part. If a drawing changes color and texture… well, I hope I have a digital back up!