Embrace Your Own Normal

Last week’s Life Book lesson was taken by Wyanne Thompson.  Her theme and message was a powerful one about how to move forward from the crappy and awful things that can befall us in life.  My interpretation of her pep talk was that experiences can change us and make us feel different and abnormal in comparison to our previous selves and to others but we can accept, embrace and maybe even celebrate our own “normal”.  That is something I have found to be true in my own life certainly.  This perspective informed the art work for the lesson which was about creating a quirky and imperfect face.

As per usual, I had to take some short cuts because of pressure of time or not having the same materials.  Thompson demonstrated a nifty ink transfer method that I will definitely try at some point but was unable to use for this lesson so instead I drew loosely with a paintbrush loaded with India ink.  I am increasingly determined to try and adapt art lessons to my own illustrative style and that was the case with this lesson.  The bird on the head came about because I wanted to introduce a quirky element that would create some asymmetry and also cover one eye.  I kept trying to draw a large flower but it just wasn’t working out.  Frustrated, I downed tools and glanced out of the window and there was a blue jay.  Three of my kids separately commented that my illustration looks “emo” because of the bird covering part of the face.

I think this is one of my “step backward” pieces.  I like the way the orange background offsets the blues and purples but otherwise I think the piece is far too busy and visually cluttered, too many elements for the eye to settle.  I also think the bird looks way more dorky than quirky.  That needed more revision.  However, in the spirit of the lesson’s theme, I accept and embrace the flaws as part of the process of developing my style.

Week 19 - Your Normal is not Everyone Else's Normal

15 thoughts on “Embrace Your Own Normal

  1. I love her ’emo’ mood. I think this certainly belongs to your step forward works. It’s different. It’s playful. It’s colorful. It has the drama and sensitivity written all over her.

  2. I love most of this piece Laura – the colours work for me and I like ‘busy’ – I enjoy working my way through layers to find a little more here and a tad more there……… I agree with you about the bird, though ‘dorky’ is a bit harsh 🙂 It’s actually quite a successful bird, just its positioning is off……. If I thought you had more time I’d say have another go at it – there is so much here that is uniquely you!

    • Thanks very much for your feedback. I really appreciate it. Yes, the placement of the bird is off, I agree. The perils of drawing in ink. The bird is still better than the large flower I had in its place though.

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