Sunday, March 18, 2012

GOOD Art Challenge: Update 3

I accomplished a few more items on my GOOD challenge list this weekend! Breaking this into two posts so it won't be too long.

18. Make a card for someone you love.
5. Create something handmade and give it to someone.
One complaint I have about the GOOD list is that it's redundant. But since this falls into either category, I'm counting it for both! It was my good friend's birthday this weekend, and I made him a card. I think that counts for this challenge. Can you guess the theme? The front:

His guesses: a razor? (clever! but no.) Business card holders? (uhh, for a birthday?) Now open it up...

Three mystery pockets! What's inside? Open up the flap... (by the way, I'm super happy with the way these flaps turned out! yay vellum and accordion folds.)

To find a series of scrabble tiles! My friend is an avid scrabble and anagram enthusiast, so I thought this would be fun! I was inspired by two projects on Pinterest: here and here. Do you see what was on the cover? Scrabble tile holders! My friend, after solving the puzzle:

11. Sketch somebody and give them the picture.
This challenge frightened me slightly. I draw abstract things or stylized people (read: stick figures), but I don't have the skills to sketch anyone and I would never want to give someone the finished product. Enter: blind contour drawing. Blind contour drawing is where you draw something without looking at the paper. Your pen is also not allowed to lift from the paper, so your drawing is made up of one continuous line. It's fun. And, as I discovered this weekend, hilarious. I've decided it's not only a great party game but it's also my new favorite party game.

The steps of this new game go as follows:
  • You pair up with someone, and each take turns drawing the other in marker. On your turn you make two drawings of your partner.
  • The first drawing is a blind contour portrait. You have three minutes to make this drawing, but you can stop early if you finish before the time is up.
  • NO LOOKING at the blind contour drawing! Put the page aside, face down.
  • Now you draw a second portrait of your partner. This time, you still have three minutes, but you're allowed to look at the paper and lift up the pen. 
  • When the time is up, you can do the reveal! First, the regular portrait, and then the blind contour portrait.
  • Hilarity ensues!!
  • Switch, and now the artist becomes the subject and vice versa.
I think it's good to have time limits, because you can't agonize about making a perfect drawing. The time limit takes some of the pressure off and adds a fun speed element. You could do less than 3 minutes, even. I also made the rule of drawing in marker, because then you can't erase, so you just have to go with whatever you put down. Again, another way of reducing the pressure of making sometime perfect.

Before we started, I asked my friend what he thought the outcome would be. He said that the blind contour portrait would probably look terrible, and the regular portrait would be the better one. I've done this before, so I knew (at least in my opinion, for people who don't regularly draw) the reverse is true. Well, you can be the judge. The regular portrait I drew of my friend:

Haha! Not sure what happened to his nose, and mouth. ("I didn't realize my nose looked like a shoe!") And now the blind contour drawing:

These drawings are so great! It's definitely weird but it has this stylistic, artistic feel to it. It reminds me of Picasso. And the lines feel so much more natural than in the drawing where I consciously set out to make his portrait. I had no chance to overthink the shapes.

Of course, my friend wanted to have a go with it and took a turn drawing me. So, dear readers, if you've ever wondered what I look like, the suspense is over. The regular portrait:

I guess I look like an old man? And, the blind contour:

HAHA. We laughed so hard, we were literally crying for 10 minutes. Oh god. I have never seen my friend laugh that hard in his life. The top drawing was apparently so bad, it was sentenced to destruction in my recycling bin, but I made a scan of it first so it will live on on the internet. The second one is priceless. He made the unfortunate choice of deciding to draw my teeth because I was smiling a lot, and apparently my teeth drip diagonally down my face. I also like how my nose apparently bears a striking resemblance to a spaceship. It must be true, because it's in both pictures.

This is making me want to adopt a drawing challenge for April. I can also image lots of great contexts for blind contour drawings. You know how sometimes people sketch others on the bus or train? Imagine if it were a blind contour portrait. Imagine if you received the one above. Hahaha.

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