Karen Vancil, January 12, 2009 (view all comments by Karen Vancil)
Kimon Nicolaides "The Natural Way to Draw" was The Text of my first drawing class. It was 1965, UC Davis, teacher = Wayne Thiebaud. Now, in 2009, I am returning to learn to draw again. This Is The Book To Use.
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gwynn, October 7, 2007 (view all comments by gwynn)
This book is hard. It will make you sweat, it will make you hurt and then it will ask for more. It is created as a year of classes, each section is a lesson. The first day is three hours of contour drawing. Contour drawing, for those of you who aren't familiar with it, is drawing at the slowest speed; you never look at the paper and you move your pencil barely an inch in five minutes. For three strait hours, you can literally feel your mind crack as you stay 100% alert on the edge of the vase that you are drawing.
What is happening is you are retraining yourself. Retraining how your eyes and hands work much like an injured patient who has to relearn how to walk. Its difficult, frustrating and physiologically draining, much like what the injured patient has to go through. Your hands are being trained to move exactly how your eyes move, your training them to synchronize like two dancers. It becomes startlingly easy after a week or a month. Though it is also startlingly easy to revert back to its old ways if not kept exercised.
If you are not an artist and decide to pick up this book as your teacher you are in good hands. Know that there are professional artists that have never made it past the first lesson so don't feel as though your not good enough.
For artists, this book is extremely adaptable, like most classes what you put in to it is what you get out. So not being able to get through the first 5 minutes without groaning is probably a sign that you are a strong artist and know how to push yourself. And do push yourself after all this is your art on the line, if you cant make it past 30 minutes without going crazy then your probably going about it the Right way.
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