What High School Art Class Taught Me about Blogging

An Owl in the Sun

My first day in high school Drawing class, our teacher put an image of an art piece on the projector and invited us to write down everything we knew about it. I made a really long list on my paper. Then we came back together as a class and shared our knowledge.

I was baffled and frustrated when someone else received the teacher’s praise for calling out that the artist had used cross-hatch shading. I hadn’t bothered listing it because my 6th grade art teacher had taught that technique, leading me to believe that everybody knew about it.  Turns out they didn’t.

Lesson 1: Don’t assume the obvious is actually obvious.

I had always wanted to be good at art. I wanted to learn what it was that would take the figures in my drawings from looking stiff and frozen to looking like the totally awesome fantasy characters I envisioned in my head. I wanted to know what all those different brush types were and why and when to use them. I wanted to be a master (or mistress!) of oil paints and know how to use gesso and stretch my own canvases.

Although Drawing did entail specific lessons about perspective and shading, Painting was, to me, pretty frustrating. My teacher was fabulous and encouraging, but I didn’t understand why she didn’t TEACH us stuff about art. It was as if we had to figure out how to do things by actually working at them. (please hear dry tone of voice.)

Lesson 2: There is no substitute for practice. It’s the only way to get better.


I was thinking about how those ideas tie into the world of blogging and social media… That what for me and so many others who’ve grown up with computers is so obvious is not obvious in the slightest to a whole lot of other people.  And that my pics and my posts aren’t going to get better by not posting. (:

With my semester and my internship both wrapping up – and speaking of wrapping up, a whole bunch of Christmas gifts and decorating projects to pull together in the next few weeks – I’ll have more time to focus on creative endeavors. I went to the thrift store yesterday and stocked up on some crazy cheap goodness to get my kiddos and I well down the road to a merry term break. My blogging plans usually fall apart when I don’t take any pics of my projects, so I’ll try to be sure to take plenty.

Here’s to practicing more!

And because a blog post without enough pics just isn’t as fun:

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