Adventures in Education: Chapter 1.2 ~ The Cat’s in the Mail…


 Okay let’s review what we’ve (I’ve) done thus far… We learned about framing the subject, using the grid to transfer the subject, and how to enlarge and reduce the subject with the grid. Therefore we (I) had used these tools for Assignment #1…

I received my grade for Assignment #1 earlier in the week. It arrived with Lesson 3. My instructor wrote me a letter and made lots of notes on a pre-printed overlay (a little thicker than my 25 lb. tracing paper) of a correctly drawn cat. Here’s what my instructor, in her letter, had graded me on:

  • Correct placement on the grid
  • Accuracy of size
  • Quality of reproduction
  • Neatness (of course)
My cat assignment with overlay and note from instructor
My cat assignment with overlay and note from instructor. © Art Instruction Schools

Correct Placement:
My instructor notes that even though the lines were generally placed correctly on the grid, what I’ve drawn was not completely accurate. Note the green and pink lines drawn on the overlay above. Also note the red arrows as to which direction the lines need to be moved. We can conclude that what I’d drawn has a great deal of distortion. An example of this is the cat’s right eye (on your left) needed to move up some. Another example was of the cat’s tail. It should had been drawn a little further towards the lower-right as it curves upward.

Accuracy of Size:
My instructor says that the cat was enlarged correctly. With better or careful observation, as she puts it, my drawing will improve.

Quality of Reproduction:
My instructor believes that the small details, curves, angles, etc were captured correctly in my version of the cat. (I think she must mean this in a general sense.) What she sees looks to be very promising.

As a perfectionist, neatness is very important to me. When I can’t achieve this goal it pisses me off and leaves me frustrated. In my instructor’s view, I have achieved this.

Final Thoughts:
Over all, my instructor was very happy with this first assignment. I won’t argue, even though the distortions I’ve produce don’t leave me with many warm and fuzzy feelings inside. I notice this a lot in my work. In my upcoming assignment, a seagull (coming soon), I’ve had to erase it numerous times because the belly’s too fat, the tail doesn’t look long enough, the wing’s not positioned correctly, etc. (I’ll show you in the next chapter. I’ve made snap-shots of the process.)

Final Grade: A-

Next time: Rough It Out or Simplify My Drawing

Note this post is reproduced from one I made on the forum.