Sunday, June 19, 2011

This'll learn ya!

You may have noticed that I've been absent from this blog for quite a while - I had intended when I started it to blog each week, but my brain has been focussed on my studies and my new life.  As a result, I just haven't been able to come up with good ideas for subjects.

Currently, there's one more week of Term 2 left before we break for a fortnight.  This coincides pretty much with the Shortest Day (in the Southern Hemisphere) although it's not considered mid-winter for another couple of weeks.  But I digress...

As a student, my world revolves around learning.  My Drawing tutor has told me that I have a negative attitude to my work, and this means I don't see good bits that I draw.  Yes, it's true that I'm very critical of my drawing, because I'm continually frustrated by my inability to reproduce what I see - have you ever tried to draw drapery?  You know, a sheet draped in bunches over a trestle.  I wrote on my effort that it was "Mutant Drapery", which elicited the tutor's comments.

Anyway, this got me thinking.  Naturally, we humans tend to spend our time, as we go through life, doing the things that we're good at.  I can't remember the last time I willingly spent time doing something that I had no experience in and did poorly at.  Until now.  And Drawing is not an elective - I have it for the whole 3 years of my degree.

This tutor insists that there is no such thing as talent, and that drawing is just a skill that can be learnt by anyone.  Maybe he's right.  The problem is that, at tertiary level, you're not actually taught to do things, like draw, because it's expected that you already know the basics at least.  If you don't, you look to your classmates to help.  I understand this, and have resolved to spend time drawing each day over the holidays as I certainly need the practice (plus I have to draw 3 portraits as an assignment - which I've never done before except for one day in class at the start of the year).  Problem is, because I don't really enjoy it, or the results, I don't look forward to doing it - in comparison, I adore photography and get totally excited about taking photographs.  But I digress again...

How do you, dear readers, feel about learning?  Do you stick pretty much with what you know you can do, or do you go out of your way to do things that you find difficult?  Tell me your stories!