p.s., your Doubts are Lying to You

If your mind (sometimes replayed over and over in a lover’s dulcet tones, or a friend’s or family member’s mocking criticism) has ever said to you, “art is for dummies/ children/ real artists” or maybe something like “you can’t do that” or even, “you’re not doing it right” or perhaps, “it’s not good enough”, then p.s.,


Fear and doubt are creativity killers so don’t you dare even give one more second’s notice to that little voice that tells you “I don’t” or “I’m not…”, or “I can’t…”! In fact, whatever that sneaky little liar is telling you, the best way to shut them up is to do the EXACT OPPOSITE from now on. If you can’t trust the voice in your head, you can trust me: YOU GOT THIS. I KNOW YOU CAN DO IT.

I know because I’ve never met a Ransom Note that told a lie.

Still confused about what you’re doing here? Read this…

your turn to DRAW

  • Plug your ears, play some loud music you love, turn on the Hoover, make the dogs bark, just do ANYTHING TO DROWN OUT THAT LYING VOICE then pick up your pencil and a sheet of paper (any scrap’ll do) and sketch the first thing that comes to mind or whatever’s in front of you. Even if it’s a teapot or your own hand, IT IS GOOD ENOUGH.

    Now sketch another thing. Quick! And ask yourself,

    Wine not, indeed! 😉
  • Yup, you’re ready to confront more doubt; seeing is believing with some foreshortening practice using sight measurement method:
    First, situate your subject/model and yourself so that you are looking at him/her/it from a difficult angle, e.g., one part of the subject is quite close to you, another is recedes into the distance. This can be hard to conceptualise and thus “hard to draw” right out of the gate if you attack your drawing prematurely. Maybe you can see what I mean here where the knee closest to my line of sight seems to come towards me (and can often look like a boneless sack if I’m not paying attention). So to make my drawing of knees more convincing (notice I didn’t say “right” 😉 ), I’ll try to measure out what I’m seeing before making any marks.

    Here’s how it’s done: hold up your straight-edge (ruler, pencil, stick) perpendicular to your arm, stretched straight out, elbow straight, even with your eye, and picking a starting point, determine the length of one edge or shape. Like this:

    Image: http://www.beginnersschool.com

    Then make a mark, transcribing the measurements one by one you’ve found with corresponding marks on your paper. I usually start by picking an element of my subject as one “unit”, say, the head of a life figure, or the width of an orange in a basket of fruit, and from there, move along the drawing to fit my page based on that first decision. More detailed explanation about measuring and planning drawings with a pencil or other straight-edge as measuring tool can be found here. I bet you’ll be happily surprised at how accurate and convincing your drawing becomes by taking your time to “measure twice, mark once”.

    In any case, whatever you end up with, it’s all good, you’re good, and your creative effort is GOOD ENOUGH.

Maybe this Ransom Note gives you a different idea? Let me know!

ShaRe the LovE

You’ve come this far, now why not

<<<<< click to share your creativity – @beware.of.artists

Not only does your creativity need YOU, but here’s a surprise, the world needs your creativity, too! By sharing your response to a Ransom Note, we are building a community who will enjoy, be inspired by, and learn from each other. Who knows, maybe some of us will “find our tribe” or even make the world that tiny bit more pleasant to be in than it was 15 minutes ago!

some other ways to be sure your DOUBTS are LYING TO YOU

  • Artists, you are not alone” by artist and art teacher Louise Fletcher is an uplifting article addressing the creative person’s doubt and fear. Check it out, it might help show the doubter the door!
  • Manga/anime is a popular art form in which the artists utilise a LOT of unbelievable scenarios with mind-blowing colour and compositions – including lots of foreshortening – to tell magical stories full of heroes, villains, and all sorts of characters in between. Maybe you’ve heard of Sailor Moon by Naoko Takeuchi? The tales “…bring together mythology, female power, and action all into the story of 14-year-old Usagi Tsukino, the reincarnation of a moon princess who constantly gives her life to save the world because of her goodness and desire to help others.” I bet she doesn’t listen to any liars either.

    Image: themarysue.com

What other artists or techniques can you think of? Let me know!

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