As part of my New Year’s resolutions (although I’m not usually one to buy into the hype of making resolutions) is to work through the 12 week program “The Artist’s Way.” A book by Juilia Cameron, the program has been in use and continued to develop over decades, and so far has made for some interesting reading. I’m excited about the course and the process, and I’m looking forward to having a dash of motivation and freshness to my inspiration and creativity.
In the first week of the program, much of the talk is about the “inner artist child.” I know – this sounds incredibly silly, and it did to me too, but it makes so much sense. The idea is that, as creatives, we are born as artists, and the little artists are either encouraged or stifled by the things around us – adults, experiences, our environment. And the same is true into adulthood – the inner artist is like a child and needs to be nurtured, has feelings, and the like. One of the challenges in the first week was to think about the times when we learned that we loved to create, what we loved about it, and to let the inner artist “play” without pressure or demands or expectations. That is in part where these studies came from.
I remember drawing as a child from a very early age – and I drew a lot of the same things over and over. One of my favorite things to draw was horses. I was obsessed with horses. I wanted horses. I wanted to ride them. I read about them. I read books about girls who rode horses. And, most importantly, I drew them. I learned so many artistic fundamentals drawing horses – shading, sketching, how to break down an image into shapes – I even learned foreshortening by asking my grade school art teacher how to draw one of the legs of a horse that adorned the cover of a book I was reading at the time.
So, today, I took the time to draw some horses again. For no reason. No one hired me to draw them. No one is paying for them. I’m not practicing for a commission or for an illustration. I just drew some horses because I used to love drawing them. I let it be loose, and I finished the pieces in ink and water – because ink and water is fun. No other reason. Enjoy!