Choosing Your Subject

Something has attracted your attention. Something has caused you to stop and take a second look. Perhaps it is a gnarly old tree, or a group of trees silhouetted against a mountain, or clouds reflected in a stream. It doesn't matter exactly what it is —what matters is that it has started your creative juices flowing. Walk around, get as close as possible; there's no hurry. Study the scene; get the feel of the area; try to become a part of the landscape.

At right are three photos of a landscape that attracted my atten tion. The problem with such a vast landscape was what to include in my drawing and what to leave out. With a viewfinder I was able to concentrate on only what I felt would make an interesting drawing. Of course, I rearranged and eliminated some of the landscape, but that is my privilege as an artist. More important, it is the creative process at work. The drawing below shows what I chose to include from the three landscape photos. I also added an element from my own imagination — the old fence posts.

Pencil Drawing Fence
From My Studio, 5"x 8", graphite pencil on Strathmore Alexis paper.

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