Night of Critique

Last night was my first night with an arts group in my area. This group has been around for a long time and provide feedback to artists, both amateur and professional. They also hold exhibitions and fundraising events.  Last night was  their “Annual Critique Night” where they invited esteemed painter-Pamela Cockcroft-Lasserre– to critique members works.

I arrived at the event with only my sketchbook in hand, but after seeing all the paintings floating around, I decided to quickly run back home to pick up my bellydance painting, so she could give me some advice.

Lots of people, entirely women, came to the event and it took awhile before she finally got around to the back rows where I was seated. Once it was my turn I shyly put up my insect drawing and my practice painting and told her that I have just recently started pursuing painting seriously again.

“You’re very good at drawing, she said in her fairly strong Afrikaner accent, looking at my sketch pad. “And as for the painting, how did you first design the figure?”

“I drew it first with charcoal and then used paint” I replied

“You must never, ever use charcoal with paint, she said, “because it will muddle up the paint and you will be fighting with it”

Fair enough.

“If you want to paint something, she continued, “draw it with your paint. Make sure you use paint retarder, so if you mess up, you can wipe it off and start again.”

After thanking her, I sat back down and this woman next to me invited me to join an online group that posts weekly drawing ideas, members sketch this object and then critique each other’s work.  Which sounds like great practice(Though I’m not usually at a loss for ideas)  as well as a chance to get feedback, hopefully constructive.


11 thoughts on “Night of Critique

  1. Robin

    I really love constructive criticism from people that know what they are talking about, not from people who have no clue.

  2. Jen

    What is the name of the group? This sounds like something I’d like to check out! It always helps to get another perspective, especially when you’ve been working on something so long that you can’t see it clearly anymore.

  3. Pauline Post author

    Mindfulmerchant-Aww, thank you. I have to admit I did feel pretty nervous showing my practice painting to a group of strangers.

  4. artman2112

    now me, i’m the kind of person that if she told me i must never do something, i will then do it everytime if my results were what i was looking for, lol. critiques are nice but just remember they’re just one person’s opinion and i find many so-called critics and art instructors have their own agenda going. ideally they should inspire and guide you to better be able to express your own ideas, not theirs.

  5. writerdood

    I like wrestling with charcoal, dammit. That’s the struggle I’m trying to capture here. Without the opposition of the charcoal, and the domination of the paint, you don’t get any passion in the image.

  6. Pauline Post author

    Artman-I tend to do the same thing-Opposite of what people tell me to do. LOL. But I think she was right with her advice. I probably shouldn’t mix charcoal with paint. We’ll see how it goes.
    Pearl-Yep. I hope that I can take a class with her soon. I thought she was very good at offering advice.:)
    Writerdood-LOL. Well I think I’m done “wrestling with charcoal.”

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