Since giving up on my April Challenges (good on those who followed through!), I’ve gotten back to doing regular ink work, sometimes in conjunction with watching some tutorials, sometimes just one my own and off the top of my head. These are not photographed for the gallery (I’ll take better care doing that some other time), but here are the as-of-now finished versions of my three latest sketches.
I completed the foreground the first sketch (the fairy) simply in order to test a few pointers I got from a YouTube video¹. I opted to fill out the image today while on a conference call, since I still felt in looked a little sparse. I could have been more conscientious about the shading on the flowers, but over all it was always intended as a “quick sketch,” so I’m not going to agonize over it.
Second drawing I did just as a quick study of hands, since they (and feet, and to a lesser extent, noses) are still the body parts that give me the most trouble. I added the plant yesterday, and the roots, extra leaves, and quote today. Again, for something that was sort of spur-of-the-moment, I’m satisfied (looking forward to breaking out those new microns, though; look at the weight behind some of those hatch lines).
Third one I’m just really, really happy with. Figure and birds were drawn partially from three different references, flowers were free-handed. Completed it yesterday in its entirety while listening to podcasts.
Bear has been having a difficult time, lately. He’s up every night and in our room, something that had become a rare occurrence before COVID-19 and quarantine became his day-to-day reality. He says he’s happy about being at home because he can be with me and play whenever he wants, but I can tell it’s hard for him.
We’ve been letting him out on the porch in the nicer weather; I hesitate to let him downstairs because it’s already difficult keeping him and his friend next door apart. They started out yesterday chatting from the porch and her window, and then moved to her being in her yard and them both drawing with chalk together-apart (she on her retaining wall, he on the porch), when we noticed the volume of his speech getting quieter. He and she had pulled their jackets up around their mouths like face masks and were trying to sneak into the yard together. Something similar happened today, as well, but this time he had an intense crying jag after. I don’t want to keep him inside, because I think that’s counter productive, but I don’t know what to do. I try to be as direct as possible with him about the severity of COVID and the seriousness of the quarantine without scaring the absolute shit out of him, but he’s five. Even though he’ll tell people he can’t play with them or that they can’t see each other because of quarantine (something he’s repeated to his cousin multiple times over video chat when Ben inevitably asks him when they’ll see each other), he just doesn’t fully “get” it. Which is a blessing, in some ways, but a curse in so many others.
His teacher messaged me to set up a Zoom conference tomorrow at five with a few of his classmates, which I think will do him a world of good. I asked him today what the first thing he’d want to do after quarantine ended was. He said, “Go to school.” I think he needs the face time with his teacher, if no one else. He went from seeing her every day and giving her a hug before we left to suddenly not seeing her for, we told him, two weeks… three weeks… six weeks… not again until at least September, at which point she’ll no longer be his teacher. I honestly mourn his ability to say a real goodbye to his teacher and classmates. It’s the same way I feel about my Seniors.
I myself had a Zoom conference with my department today, and scrolling through the three pages of attendees faces literally made me tear up. I’m not an especially social person, but I’ve always taken for granted how much of a social thing work is for me, and how far that went towards fulfilling my social needs. With that gone, I’m sort of lost.
I’m hoping to get more art done today, but barring that, maybe some binge watching or some work down in the basement.
Hope you are all holding up and being kind to yourselves.
¹ I’m considering putting up an old-school “links” page, for things like my favorite YouTubers (ArtTube, BookTube, general entertainment), forums I frequent, podcasts I enjoy, etc. We’ll see if I can get that done by the weekend. That’s the goal.