The Monochrome Lover

All about pencil and charcoal sketching

Tag: recreation

From white paper to wall frames: A chat with Erika Farkas

Have you ever wondered making a career in canvas and colours? While I was wondering about the scope for art as a career, I got to interact with Erika Farkas, a Romania based artist, specialized in charcoal and portrait and here is what I learnt…

Erika Farkas, a Romania based artist

Q: How do you think the society has accepted art as profession in this age? Has it progressed since the past?

Erika: Art as a profession has certainly progressed. Back in the renaissance, artists only worked on commissions from their patrons, they rarely created works for their own enjoyment.  The acceptance of women in the artist profession has also come a long way. However, now there are too many talented artists out there, and if want to make it as an artist, you have to be original and stand out from the crowd.

Q: How did you prepare yourself to choose art as a career?

Basically, I started drawing. I was always pretty good at it. The more I drew, the better I became at it and I developed my own style, or so I would like to think.

Q: Was it not difficult for you to pursue a career in art without a formal training? How did you handle it?

My belief is that you don’t need a formal training if you are able to learn and experiment on your own. But nowadays, there is so much free information on the internet, free instructions from accomplished artists from where you can learn the basics without paying an arm and a leg for a fine art degree.

Takeaway from the chat: “My advice for the beginners is the Nike slogan “Just do it!”. Keep at it and I promise that the more you practice, the better you get and the greater will your satisfaction be!”

 

 

What you see, you draw

Ever wondered why you tend to scribble or draw random shapes during your class hours / serious meetings, yet you would be able to participate in the discussion? Is that a sign of us being an abnormal individual? No! That’s the ‘real you’ getting inspired.

Happiness is doodling during meetings

Sketching is the primary way our brain captures, explores, and communicates an idea. Sometimes, it can also be a powerful problem-solving tool. The idea could be abstract, but gradually you will find yourself decoding the intention of your sketches and come up with an answer. But guess what? All this happens inside our brain within matter of seconds!

What’s happening in our head?

We keep listening to or looking at the elements in our environment and the ‘doodling’ moment occurs! We get inspired in a jiffy and our brain processes it into an idea and your hands tend to draw a shape, it could even be a line that you are striking over and over! At this point, we tend to think about the concepts that are impractical, which is known as ‘visual thinking.‘ This helps us come up with better alternatives during the discussion. In other words, sketching is just a reaction, like biting nails, You see, you think and get sparked and react.

We are not an artist, yet we sketch

Each one of us have an artist in us, but we seldom realize that. We have sketching, integrated in our daily life without our own knowledge. Just think! Don’t you remember drawing a road map for someone who asked you for the route to a certain destination? Weren’t you satisfied after ‘drawing’ the map for them? That’s the emotion a professional artist feels after his/ her last stroke on the paper.

Keep calm and keep sketching

So take time, give yourself some freedom and keep sketching!

Believe it or not, I can actually draw

Whoever knew that the familiar, crusty, crumbly, black remains of your campfire is one of the oldest art mediums, that every artist would go mad about? Charcoal is a traditional drawing medium that has been preferred by various famous artists like Robert Longo, Vincent van Gogh and William Kentridge.

This form of dry art medium is mostly preferred because of its ability to produce rich tone and contrast on paper. Unlike other form of mediums, charcoal gets easily blended with the paper, helping the artist to produce various effects on the work. That said and done, this is the only art medium that dirties the hands, bringing out the inner-child of the artist.

What a burnt stick could produce on a paper

Just like every other child, I too loved getting my hands dirty. I chose to try this art only to ‘get-messy’. But eventually, I fell in love with the magic that a burnt stick had produced on the paper!

Charcoal sketching may look complicated externally, but technically, it is a very easy and interesting form of art. Reason being that, it easily spreads on the paper/ surface, we can make free and big strokes and most importantly you can erase and influence your imagination with smudging techniques.

My first attempt at charcoal sketching was done when I turned 18 and had just finished my high school. I had no image in my mind and I did not have a professional charcoal pencil set then. I had just began trying the art form and hence considered expanding my medium apart from Charcoal- I used a black crayon to sketch the outline and I was surprised by its versatile nature and the outcome on the paper.

My first attempt at charcoal sketching

So if you are looking for a recreation and love to express yourself visually, may be charcoal is the type of art you should be attempting, for its so easy to begin with and simply because it is such a forgiving medium.

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