Thread is Just Another Way to Draw
My goal over the last few semesters has been to draw more. And figure out my art style and direction. I have always been drawn to portraits and the human body. When I wanted to go into medicine, I really enjoyed the classes where I was able to go to the physical therapy unit. In my art I have focused on the male human anatomy. Girls are beautiful, but I want to draw male beauty. I have struggled as all artist do with being too harsh on myself and my art. I also tend to look at what others and doing and when I feel that my skill is not up to others I stop and don’t make art for a while. But in the last few years I have been pushing myself to stop comparing my talent to others and work on getting better.
Part of my goal in going to graduate school was to learn more about teaching and how to be a more effect artist and teacher. I also wanted to find my voice in the art world and stop trying to copy another artist’s voice. When I first took ED’s class Research Methods, it opened me up to different ways of making art. Then I took Future’s American Studio Crafts and that further opened my mind to ways of making art. I learned to knit in that class and Future suggested to me to, embroider on my knitting. Then I retook Research Methods and that was another push on what art is. I started drawing more and focusing on improving my drawing. Then, when we read Queer Threads, I was inspired by the artist in that book.
When I first started taking classes in university for graphic design I wanted everything to be grungy and packed with color, texture, images, and fonts. My teacher then pushed me to work in a minimalist style, by having me create an art project based on another designer’s style. That was the start of my love for a simpler, minimalist style of art. In my drawings practice I am working on perfecting a more illustrative style of just line and minimal shading to add 3-dimensionality to my drawing. I want to be able to convey they sense of weight, roundness, and 3D with mainly line and minimal shading.
That artist that inspired me the most out of Queer thread was Rebecca Levi. I love the simplicity of her work juxtaposed with the decorative elements of the flowers and other stitching patterns. Even though it is just lines with thread, there is a sense of weight and 3D-ness to her art. In my advance art class, we were challenged to create a drawing using alternative methods of creating a line. We could not use pencil at all. This project reminded me of that and using tape to create a large-scale drawing of the male torso. While doing this project I was reminded that thread is just a line. It’s another way to draw.
Living abroad in China I am facing some challenges to this new style of mine but, I will find a way to over some it. I don’t have huge crafts stores where I can walk in and buy thread and hoops readily. I can’t walk over to the art supply section and get carbon transfer paper to transfer my drawings on to the fabric. I have to ask my Chinese friends to order things for me and sometimes the quality is not the same or I have to travel by subway an hour across the city to get to the fabric markets.
I still working on finding which stitch patterns I like and and will work to convey weight. I also working on learning more stitch patterns and decorative elements like flowers and leaves. Also, combining thread to to add shading. I also want to try my hand a working more at 8 1/2 x 11 or 9 x 12 inch size. I think that it will work better with capturing the details and having enough negative space to add in flowers and leaves and other decorative elements. I can’t wait to explore more. This style will also push me to get better at drawing.