Drawing Lab For Mixed Media Artists by Carla Sonheim
The book says:
DRAWING LAB offers a year's worth of assignments, projects, ideas and techniques that will introduce more creativity and nonsense into your art and life! This inspiring book offers a fun way to learn and gain expertise in drawing through experimentation and play. There is no right or wrong result, yet, you will gain skills and confidence allowing you to take your work to a whole new level.
I'm going to be honest, when I first received this book I sat and read it till about half way through and put it down. I really wasn't inspired to try out the exercises. I thought they were daft.Then a blog friend, Cameron, decided to do a play along with the book. Doing an exercise every week or so and encouraging others to join in and link up. Well, I had the book so why not.
Now I have to eat my words a tad. This is one of those books you have to use to get the full benefit from, not just read. The very first exercise where you are encouraged to use your dominant and non-dominant hand completely surprised me. I actually preferred the images I came up with using my non-dominant hand. I never would have tried this technique before.
There are some exercises that I just know I wont bother with, for example there is one where you are encouraged to go to a zoo. Honestly, with three kids I'm just not going to go to do that and get any peace to draw. But these exercises that you might not be comfortable with could easily be gotten round by maybe watching video footage on the Internet. It's assumed that you have pets and children in the book and some of the exercises involve drawing them or collaborating with them (that would be the children not the pets.) If you didn't have either of these to hand I'm sure you could again use the Internet for animal images or borrow a niece or nephew if you really wanted to do those exercises. Some of the other exercises are a bit to cute, I think they might fall into the whimsy style which for the most part just doesn't appeal to me. Other exercises I really love, like those based on famous artist styles.
Personally I think this is a book that, if you don't actually do the exercises and give it a chance, you are either going to love or hate at first read. A bit like Marmite. If you at least try you may well find your opinion changed. For me, having read and tried... I'm in the middle. I think I'll do half the exercises but the other half really just don't appeal. It's swings and roundabouts. I'm glad I read it because it did take me out of my comfort zone. Which was kind of the idea.
Many thanks to Quarry Books for sending the book to review.
Thank you for stopping by :)