Old Dogs CAN Learn New Tricks!

Last fall I began a new adventure: going back to college!  I enrolled in a traditional painting class and something completely new for me, a digital arts course.  A friend recommended the digital class after he and I discussed flyers I had made using MS Word.  He made the argument that if I could do that on Word, that I would love PhotoShop.  He was right!  The current semester finds me in the next level of digital arts: Intermediate (also known as Communication Design).

Between these two courses I received a graphic tablet as a Christmas present.  I was advised that there would certainly be a learning curve as I jumped in to develop my hand-eye coordination (and there was!).  My first self-assigned project was a zentangle doodle.  My thinking was that using a “no-brainer” subject would free me to concentrate on the technique of using this new media.  I concentrated on simple lines and shapes, adding shading as I approached the end of the project.  For the record, it was not easy!

The next self-imposed assignment was to try brush strokes and other techniques (smudging, etc.).  This project was a realistic “painting” using a photo of one of my cats.  I was amazed at how much I enjoyed it, while questioning the authenticity of this media compared to traditional methods.  Yeah, guess I was kind of old-school in my thinking.

But an old dog CAN learn new tricks!  What’s the difference between traditional media (usually oil pastels, graphite or paint for me) and digital art?  For me, traditional is more tactile and I love the actual texture that ensues from the application.  But digital has many advantages, including the ease of correcting mistakes (you didn’t think I was perfect in my artworks, did you?).  There are many aspects to compare and I am in the process of studying these and will discuss in the future.  Besides, I am not terribly fond of reading long posts on blogs and think I’ve exceeded my limit.

That said, thanks for reading and looking!

wacom practice 3 ZENTANGLES v2 psd



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