Drawing Class Hangover

The week after the first ever non-virtual real-life drawing class: I feel a wee bit hung-over. It was hard. I knew it would be challenging. I knew I knew nothing going into it. Still - in my secret and imagined fantasy world I wanted it to be easier.

There were things on a table- a tray, flowers, a rubber boot, more flowers, a plastic wine glass, a cannister of cocoa - and the instructor's wife was available as a model. We looked at supplies. We taped or clipped our paper to the easel and he said, "Just start drawing."

What!?! It took me a minute or two to calm down. Didn't I make it absolutley clear I am an absolute beginner? Just draw!?!

I calmed down. I decided to decide what to draw from the things on the table. I decided to draw EVERYTHING on the table. (a.k.a. All The Things)

I picked a pencil and went to it. It was kind of crazy difficult fun weird. I knew I was seeing one thing and then drawing a complete other thing but I had no other options. Into the eyes through the brain down the arm out the hand - lots of room for translation.

We were there for two and a half hours. Just drawing. The instructor told me to draw faster. He tried to explain one point and two point perspective to me and he drew cubes on the corner of my paper. He talked about gesture drawing and composition. He told me to frame it the way I would frame a piece in Photoshop.

I drew faster. It got better. I liked listening to the conversations in the room while I drew fast little pictures all over my paper.

Then it was over. I asked what to do between classes. Just practice. Okay.

I haven't practiced until today. Class was Monday. Today is Thursday.

I've been a bit hung over.

And thinking things like:

  • It's really not a beginner's class.
  • He isn't the right instructor for me.
  • I should be drawing and shading spheres for three months.
  • Where was the lesson?
  • I picked the wrong class.
  • I'm the only beginner in the class.

That's resistance. It's ego. It's Lizard Brain telling me to, "Run, run, run!"

Theree times this week. I've listened to (or read) three different teachers: Jane Davenport, Barbara Sher and Heather Sellers talk/write about Lizard Brain and how it works very hard to keep us safe. When there is adrenaline released into wherever that stuff gets released from:to:, Lizard Brain perks up and hollers, "RUN!!!! Dinosaurs are after you!" And what I hear is. "This really isn't a beginner's class. You should drop this class and look for a better class."

Instead of listening to Lizard Brain who is always working so hard to save my Ego's butt, what I need to do is stay put. And draw. And learn what learning there is to learn in this place here and now.

It's a challenge for my Ego to be a beginner again. I believe we are always beginners. But my Ego doesn't believe that. My ego thinks I've got it going on! That I should automatically be a master at everything.

No. I crave being a beginner. I do. That's not the sound of me brown-nosing my muse. I want to learn new things. I want to learn to draw. I'm cracking open that fragile ego and surrendering myself to not knowing. To awkwardness. To practice and trying again and again to draw what I see.

Just draw!?!

"Crap!" That was Lizard Brain who still insists it would be much safer for me to just skip class next week.