April 17, 2017
Committing to doing something daily, and doing it daily yields amazing results. Committing to something daily and NOT doing daily does not yield amazing results. For the last three years I committed to practicing juggling fifteen minutes every day. Juggling has been a skill I have desired since childhood. Not once did I practice for fifteen minutes and rarely did I spend even five minutes, two days in a row, juggling.
For the past two days, I have juggled for fifteen minutes straight each day. The first day I tripled my number of tosses and catches by the end of my practice period. The second day I doubled the tosses and catches of the first day. Sketching daily, I have experienced equally dramatic results. I didn’t perceive the increase in skill level handling line, design, values and hue as each day, week, month and year passed. When I look back on the drawings I did in 2011 when I became reacquainted with my sketchbooks as well as the sketches I did a year ago, I am shocked at how much I have learned since then simply by sketching every day, without fail, even if it’s only a five minute scribble. Sometimes the five minute scribble can break me out of the slump of drawing in the same way day after day.
Today is Day 107 of 2017. When I agreed to start the Daily Sketchers Facebook Page I wasn’t sure I would actually post every day. On the days when I felt like giving myself a break, I remembered the reward of painting and posting every day during the month of September last year when I was in Paris. The names of all the artists who posted a new, plein air painting every day of that month on the Strada site were entered into a drawing. Five names were pulled and those artists were awarded the Strada Easel of their choice. My name was the fifth name drawn and I am now the happy owner of a full-size Strada Easel. I used the micro Strada easel during my stay in Paris. All three sizes are fantastic for both travel and studio.
I challenge you to sketch daily, not for me, but for yourself. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Your confidence will grow. Eventually you will experience the joy of line work, of rearranging the world into your own unique patterns and designs, you will see aspects of yourself reflected in your drawings and will become more connected with your reasons for choosing art to express your experience of life. You will, by observing what you choose to sketch, discover personal inclinations you have been unaware of and you will make better choices when it comes to what you paint and how you paint it. Most importantly, you will discover what brings you happiness and you can fill your life with more of that experience.
If you wish to become part of the Daily Sketchers group and you are not already a member, please let me know and I will add you to the group. It is not a requirement to post daily. I encourage it, but I don’t demand it. The purpose of the group is to share our daily (weekly or monthly) sketches with one another as well as our techniques, questions, answers and inspiration. I encourage you to be in touch with other members whose work you enjoy and to visit their blogs or websites to view more of their work and to learn from them. It is not a place to post notices of events or exhibits you are participating in. This is a place to share the little steps we take each day toward honing our skills and learning new skills. Daily Sketchers