Wednesday, 7 June 2017

A Creative Challenge

Back in September 2014 I started a creative challenge to do a drawing everyday. For two weeks I made daily observations of things around me and it became a sort of visual diary. Among others, there was a pencil drawing of ivy seed heads...


A quick sketch of my lunch...


 And a drawing of a Goldfinch, because I happened to be reading "The Goldfinch" by Donna Tartt. Some were quick sketches and others were more carefully drawn observations.


Then on the 12th - 13th September I spent a weekend away with The Textile Study Group, a weekend spent drawing, with a view to joining them. My entry in my little visual diary that weekend was as follows: "... the weekend ended with me not being accepted by the group. My work lacks variety and depth apparently. It's a huge knockback and I'm struggling to see the point of carrying on with any sort of art".

It was a huge blow and I wrote about it here and here, but always one to bounce back it wasn't long before I was immersed in whatever was happening in my life at the time... my Mum's 80th birthday party I believe! But three years on I realise that my art practice has virtually stopped. Teaching has gradually been cut back (not always my choice) and I am no longer a member of an exhibiting group - I couldn't afford the membership and hanging fees to stay with Prism. When I wrote and explained why I wouldn't be renewing my membership I didn't even get an acknowledgement which made me feel undervalued once again. And I realise that I've stopped making art. So when someone posted about a 30 day instagram project to make a 15 minute drawing every day in June I decided to join in.


For the first couple of days I managed a few quick doodles... no judgements, no worries about being good enough, just the act of creating a daily drawing.


I've not managed every day bacause I'm still srtugging with the motivation. But then that is the point of just a 15 minute sketch... it is simply exercising that creative muscle until it becomes second nature to pick up a pencil or paintbrush. For the first time today I actually started to lose myself in the process and liked the outcome so maybe it is working.


You can follow my progress on Instagram... along with lots of photos of cakes of course!

19 comments:

  1. You always seem so busy I am surprised you have time for anything else. Really like your drawings. At my age I wonder why I do anything at all.

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  2. Your drawings & paintings are truely beautiful. To say they lack depth & variety pfff. Your talents & creativeness seem to be endless. Don't let them get yoiu down.

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  3. They are absolutely lovely. Wish I had your talent. B x

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  4. I think I probably made a comment 3 yrs ago that art courses/groups want a certain type of 'exploring' 'playing' 'experimenting' and if you approach creativity from a different angle you are seen not to fit the criteria. But there's no point being someone you're not. Your most recent mixed media painting of the flowers in a bowl is beautiful ... and shows you love colour and texture and careful composition.

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  5. If I could draw and use colour as you do, I would be quite content. Those judgements made about your work are shameful and so discouraging, whereas they should have been helpful and encouraging you to continue. Pay no attention to them and keep up the good work.

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  6. A friend, who is an established artist with a good track record of exhibiting and selling locally, was rejected by a local group for being 'not quite us'.
    Husband is the current chairman of a group for organists of all standards and ages, and even those who don't play but like to listen, and spends a great deal of his time encouraging members, attending their recitals and finding local teachers as appropriate. Such groups shouldn't be elitist or an 'in crowd'. Glad to see you drawing and enjoying art again - now could you just motivate me to get back to sewing and drawing? I'm totally at a standstill!

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  7. A friend, who is an established artist with a good track record of exhibiting and selling locally, was rejected by a local group for being 'not quite us'.
    Husband is the current chairman of a group for organists of all standards and ages, and even those who don't play but like to listen, and spends a great deal of his time encouraging members, attending their recitals and finding local teachers as appropriate. Such groups shouldn't be elitist or an 'in crowd'. Glad to see you drawing and enjoying art again - now could you just motivate me to get back to sewing and drawing? I'm totally at a standstill!

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  8. Gosh, how terrible that anyone should dampen the creative spirit of someone else. That's awful. I don't have a creative bone in my body so truly admire those that do. Your drawings are beautiful and don't let anyone tell you otherwise xx

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  9. To keep your creativity going find a friend and set up some sort of regular flow of work, nothing like company in some form to keeping one on track. Rejection is hard to take but when or if an acceptance comes it is so much sweeter.

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  10. How dispiriting to not be accepted by a group. I can imagine it must have sapped your motivation. But you have a good talent, and I hope you're able to find your own way as an artist. It would be good if you could find an inspirational group or at least a fellow artist friend or two to keep you excited about art. Well done on the regular sketching, and I hope you find a routine that you enjoy. CJ xx

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  11. You know what I think Gina (b***s to the lot of 'em!
    Your drawings are lovely - and so are you. If ever you want to teach in Norfolk ..... xx

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  12. Hi Gina, I popped over from coastal ripples. Your art is wonderful, really lovely. I really hope those comments from the group that didn't let you in don't dent your love of creating. You have a real talent. Perhaps that group would have stifled you had you joined it? CT.

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  13. If someone as talented as you have rejections and silly comments, what hope for us mere mortals! Loving the sketches. I never keep up these things so have stopped trying.

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  14. i hope you return to your textile work soon - I miss seeing it. Selfish? Me?

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  15. Gina -you are SO multi-talented. Don't let ANYONE ever dampen your spirits (but I wish I could take on board my own advice!!) I once had pretty barbaric feedback from a WI session I led as a guest speaker. 4 or 5 hours prep (at least), setting up time, the session, making eats for the coffee break, printing recipes /handouts, cost of all the ingredients etc.. Clearing up back at home for a £40 fee. I then get a pretty miserable email from chair woman giving me feedback. I wouldn't have minded so much if this mealy mouthed woman had even been at the session!! I was going to respond but then I thought no, I did a good job and it wasn't even worth the energy or time to send an e.mail responding to so many inaccuracies. WE ARE WORTH BELIEVING IN OURSELVES lovely Gina. All women (and men) out there who have had a painful dispiriting knock-back give yourself a big hug! Liz aka Rocking Dog x

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  16. Well done on bouncing back Gina. I have been enjoying seeing your art work over on Instagram.I wish I could draw even half as well.

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  17. Lost the creative mojo. I don't think so! I think you and I should have another challenge between us .... no pressure but perhaps if we made it drawing related..... what am I saying? Ignore me and keep going the way you're going. It all looks good to me. x

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  18. that double page doodle I can see stitched

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  19. Believe me, you would not want to belong to the group that didn't want you, you are far to nice to join them. I like your little bowl of flowers.

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