Saturday, May 26, 2007

all that is mine is in my hands

I have shaky hands. People often say to me when they see my work "you must have a steady hand" when in fact the opposite is true. I have to warm up when I start drawing. I have wondered whether this is where my cross-hatching techniques come from; because drawing a clean line is not always easy I tend to go over the line a few times to correct it. Of course, there are drawings that I have created that are quite clean and simple - my cats, umbrella and Birkenstocks come to mind - but they are rare. I was really nervous when I made those drawings. One shake in the wrong place and it could have ruined them.

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Blogger Natalie Ford said...

That is fascinating to me about your shaky hands. Mine are often very shaky as well and/or my eyes have difficulty focussing. Maybe, seeing as you manage it, I should not give up drawing detailed work just yet! How do you warm up, exactly? Loose throw-away sketches? My eyes get so tired out the more I do that I tend to try to start with the more detailed work based on previous photos or sketches and try to only work for 15 mins or so at one sitting...

12:39 AM  
Blogger ksklein said...

i´ve got very shaky hands too, so i tend to draw very quickly. i keep wondering how you manage to do such detailed and exact work. you never draw outside the lines. i keep doing that. now that i know that you have shaky hands, i admire your work even more.

12:49 AM  
Blogger Bonny said...

Hi Andrea;

I keep marvelling how you take something ordinary - like beet roots - and make it seem so elegant!
Both versions are lovely. The plain one is evocative enough of the subject that it stands on its own beautifully.
I must admit though, I'm very partial to the coloured version. It just jumps off the screen!

2:43 AM  
Blogger mrana said...

My hands are pretty shaky too! I sometimes think that I make myself draw lots of lines (without ever using a ruler sigh) just to rebel against that, or as an anal attempt to prove I have control over my body!!!

I love that you've shown the progression in this, it's fascinating and I wish I could see you actually drawing it. Beetroots are delicious! I started growing them in my garden as they're so beautiful and of course had to eat them and now love them. These are brilliantly drawn.

4:52 AM  
Blogger Emma Pod said...

It is so nice to see both your initial drawing and then the drawing with colors. Both are beautiful! It's interesting to read your tag items with your drawings. And I'm glad to know you've found a way to deal with shaky hands. I tend to get tingly fingers...I think it's carpal tunnel syndrome from small repetitive movements.

7:33 AM  
Blogger andrea said...

Your work is very precise, so I'm surprised you have shaky hands! I hate my steady hand. I actually do my best to shake it up a bit so my line will have more character!

I love that you differentiated between tennis players and athletes!

2:26 PM  
Blogger r.e.wolf said...

I certainly never would have known! Now you're work is even *more* awe-inspiring!!

2:52 PM  
Blogger Teri C said...

You shocked the heck out of me saying you had shaky hands! Your drawings are so precise and wonderful-it just seems impossible!! Love this one.

4:41 PM  
Blogger E-J said...

I can feel the weight of those beetroots ... it's incredible! This may be a cheeky request (or case of wishful thinking) but I would love to see you present a masterclass in your approach to drawing, for the EDM group, Andrea. You share such detailed close-ups with us and yet I remain as mystified as the moment I first click on your image.

I hadn't seen the cats before. Lovely!

9:30 PM  
Blogger andrea joseph's sketchblog said...

Aaw thank everyone!

It's funny the subjects that resonate with people. It seems like shaky hands is one of those subjects! It's funny but I've met quite a few artists with the shakes. One sculptor who made the most delicate and intricate works. Interesting.

Mariana - I am really surprised to hear about your shakey hands (Ha!) as you work is so clean and precise.

Ksklein - I too draw very quick (once I've got into the drawing) especially when I start hatching.

Natalie - I like Mariana would warm up with drawing some lines. Or maybe some squiggley things, it doesn't take too long to get into it.

EJ - that is some compliment! I'm blushing. I don't know about me doing a mastrerclass but that would be a really good idea for some of the EDM artists to give masterclasses. I think that could prove evry intersting.

Thank you ALL. I'm touched.

12:49 AM  
Blogger Kathleen said...

I love the colour version, Andrea, so wonderful!
If you scroll down the pages so just the root and a little of the body of the beet show, it looks like they are dancing!

3:59 AM  
Blogger Africantapestry said...

Both your beeroot drawings are wonderful Andrea!And I'm alkso including your previous posts here...the tea and your key. Your work is just always wonderul to look at and you skills can be only admired!

9:07 AM  
Blogger hfm said...



1:21 PM  
Blogger José Louro said...

Great job with the cross hatching. Even with shaky hands...

9:32 PM  
Anonymous suz50 said...

Love your stuff, admire your sketches. Found you from David's awards. I was on blogger also under 'toiletpaper', but jumped ship over to with a new blog. Take a peek if you'd like.

12:20 AM  
Blogger MEETING NEIL IS EASY said...

Ever wonder if all that tea consumption contributes to the shakes? As a former devourer of mass quantities of delicious coffee, I always kind of knew where my windows of straight-line opportunity lay during a given day. Drawing is much easier now since kicking the caffeinated beast.

Now I have nothing but a couple years of steady-hand in front of me until the inevitable arrival of our good friend arthritis.

5:26 PM  
Blogger Jeanette said...

Beautiful! I don`t like beeroot but I like your drawing. Very much !!! Epecially the color version!

7:53 PM  
Blogger andrea joseph's sketchblog said...

Thank you everyone,

I really appreciate your visits and comments.

Meeting Neil - he he! You could have a point except I've been shaky all my life! Also, a lot of the tea I now drink is caffiene (sp?) free. I too used to have a coffee habit like yours which is exactly why I swapped to the healthier option!

Cheers guys.

10:09 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

After reading all the comments on your post I'm thinking there may be a place for a "shaky-handed artist group". I'll be the first in line to join! I also put a lot of detail into many of my works and am always rather startled to hear the "you must have steady hands" comment.

3:39 AM  
Blogger Serena said...

I'll join the shaky hands club! lol

Your beetroot drawing is wonderful!!!

1:08 AM  
Blogger Zeke said...

Your shaky hands reminds me of an instructor I had years ago. I was in a micro-electronics repair course - most of the work we were learning to do was under a high power microscope. One of the instructors was always drinking coffee - in the days before decaf - and had perpetual coffee jitters. But when he was doing a demonstration of technique he became steady as a rock. Amazing what concentration can do.

Thanks for sharing.

12:17 PM  

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