Lovely Elese

7.5” x 7.5”, drawn in a Moleskine Sketchpadj,
with a Rotring 600 medium, black, ballpoint pen.

I decided to create my own exercise in this Showing Up At The Page course I’m taking by France Van Stone. So I asked this lovely young lady, Elese, who works at my favorite coffee cafe, if I could take a photo shot or two so I could sketch her. She kindly obliged and this is the first result done in ballpoint pen.

I’m coming to the conclusion that perhaps ballpoint just isn’t my medium quite yet. I have a solid two hours in this one and haven’t yet tackled the darker areas of her hair. So the game plan from here is to sketch her again with a Blackwing pencil, but complete it the same amount of time.

As it turns out, Elese is a really great Artist herself, which I didn’t know until I showed this to her. You meet the best people when you get involved in drawing and sketching! She pulled up some of her pencil work on her phone and I was truly impressed. Elese told me drawing has always come pretty easy to her. That tells me she’s always been in touch with her ability to see like an Artist. Some of us have to teach ourselves to tap into that seeing skill, but we all have it built-in. It’s just a matter of becoming aware of it and using it daily. Fortunately for Elese, she realized it in her youth.

It would be a huge gain for everyone if our educational systems realized how drawing multiplies our senses, learning and brainpower in all aspects of our lives. We become better communicators and observers, as well as better listeners. And those of us who do exercise our drawing skill daily also benefit psychologically and emotionally, becoming more relaxed and able to concentrate. And as I already mentioned, you meet some mighty fine folk along the way!

One thing I’m gonna do for sure is encourage Elese to make time to draw each day. She said her drawings take a “long time”. She’ll pick up speed quickly though since she already sees values and shapes so well. I’ll also encourage her to post her work on Instagram and maybe start a blog. When she does, I’ll let you know.🙂👍 I wonder if she knows about Urban Sketching…

Reference photo of Elese.