My Portfolio Maddie riesberg

I chose to take Intro to Art because I wanted to improve my drawing abilities and I thought it would be a really interesting and fun class. I've never been very confident with my artistic talents and I thought maybe this class would help me be more confident in my abilities.

Edges and Contours
Positive and Negative Space
Relationships and Proportions
Lights and Shadows

The drawing strategy I learned the most from is probably edges and contours. I came into the class with hardly any real drawing experience. I was used to just drawing the stereotypical symbols for objects. But this drawing strategy of drawing the edges and focusing on what's really there taught me to draw things more realistically.

These two drawings show just how much my drawing has improved since the beginning of the year. Before this class, I hated drawing. I would only do it if I absolutely had to because I never thought anything I drew looked even remotely good. But by taking this class, I learned to draw things as they really are. I learned to look at negative space when I'm having trouble with something. I learned that in order to be an artist, you cannot give up. When you look at the the first hand I drew, it honestly looks like a little kid drew it. But my drawing skills have improved immensely throughout this year because I've learned to look at things and draw them the way they really are. My second hand drawing shows this improvement. You can see how the edges are much more accurate and how the proportions are way more accurate, too. And there's even a little bit of lights and shadows that shows improvement too.

An example of chiaroscuro in my artwork would be my nose in this piece. The way there are light spots and shadows make it seem more three- dimensional. Chiaroscuro is the use of light and dark to give an illusion of space, and that is exactly what I was trying to do when I shaded the nose.

There are definite improvements with my portrait drawings, too. In the first day drawing, you can totally see the stereotypical eyes and eyelashes. But in the second one, there's an obvious change in the shape that makes the eyes seem more like the way mine are truly shaped. ALso, on the first day, I totally just skipped the nose because I didn't even want to attempt it because I knew there was no way I would make it look even a tiny bit right. But the second one clearly shows a realistic nose. While the second one is so far from perfect, compared to the first one, I can barely believe they are done by the same person. I think the mouth in both of them is a little similar in shape, but I definitely improved in making them look realistic and not have as many outlines. I would say those are the parts I most improved on: the physical features like the eyes, nose, and mouth.

The project that we did with cross-hatching would be the one I would re-do if given the chance. I think I just need some more practice with cross-hatching because it just doesn't feel comfortable when I do it. It's definitely not something that comes naturally and it just feels sort of odd to do. I really don't like that you can't really erase when you're using this method. I just don't like how permanent each mark is. It makes me nervous and that seems to just mess me up even more.

I think the two areas I have improved the most in this year are drawing abilities and developing the attitude that I can be artistic. If you look at the first few drawings I did, you can easily tell my artistic abilities were very limited. This class has taught me that it's not impossible for me to be artistic. Before this class, I never would have thought I would be able to draw a portrait that even somewhat resembled myself. The two areas I see the most improvement in kind of go hand-in-hand. As my drawing abilities got better, so did my confidence in my own abilities. I look forward to this next semester where hopefully I can continue to improve my abilities and Really believE that I do have it in me to be artistic.

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