Learning to draw involves multiple skill sets. Primarily this involves the following:
Most college programs require proof of some mastery prior to acceptance. If all an artist needed to do was master a technique, making art would be easy. The complication of the subject lies in the content and mastery of content takes a lifetime. The context is the overlooked but integral part of the artistic process. Context is the connection between the choice of media and its content. Formally, drawing is the initiation of every medium. The artist must choose that media with which he has his most personal connection. Drawing therefore is a means to an end, not the end itself.
With this said, I viewed two drawing shows this weekend during the First Friday Art March that were worth discussing. The drawing displayed in Sketch-An Informal Art Show, at Sulfur Studios, (one never to miss on the March) had an inviting simplicity. Each drawing created within a day scaled between fantasy and representation. Many have an intimate sweeping beauty such as the serendipity of a rose on a post it note or the ink study of the sweeping cape of the grim reaper. Contextually the reality of a rose demands attention, however fleeting the reality of the rose may be. In such a ballpoint pen drawing in the recall of office procedure, this beauty of a drawing bears witness to the same. My affinity for sequential art has difficulty enjoying it outside its context.
Upstream at Non Fiction Gallery, Franklin Delgado presents his thesis show and his resolved portraiture was on display. The MFA Shows enable students to place two years of working with experienced faculty on exhibit. The large charcoal portraits are intense and intimate drawings. The large white walls provided a clean vantage point for the pieces. It was not difficult to make the connection between these pieces and those of SCAD Professor Chin-Chen Hung, nor is there a shortage of figurative references. In each piece, Delgado uses a sensual treatment of hair in the mastery of his technique and the mystery of the profile. There is variety in the choices of subject; still the future holds a material challenge as charcoal gives way to pastel and pastel to painting, in the resolution of content, context and conviction one faces with each commitment.