On the fear of adding colour

The above is intended for watercolour. but I am afraid to add the colour after putting in the work to get the drawing ”right”

Sometimes we get too precious with our work. going to great lengths to make it perfect at each and every step of the way. I have been learning to let go of this predilection for perfection in my drawing instruction (via Bob Grant’s Fine Art Studio in Ottawa) because Bob has made me start to think about the relationships of the lines in a drawing. you can put down the perfect eye, its shape is perfect, it looks so realistic and jumps off the page, you can put down the perfect nose which so resembles the nose you have in your minds eye, you can manage to repeat the perfection of that first eye and so you would think you would have the perfect beginnings to a perfectly rendered face the likeness of your subject. but then you step back and you realize the placement of the one eye doesn’t match the placement of that perfect nose, and the angle of that other perfect eye…. you must find the relationships, this eye is this shape and this angle as compared to WHAT? The nose which curves away from the top of the lips and ends on either side 3/4s of the way past the midpoint of each eye. The lines you have drawn are thicker here in the nostrils than the lines arching up the bridge of the nose… This is the importance of sketching before you draw. To figure out the relationships of the lines and placement and size and angles of each individual part making up your subject.

But then when you get it all right: you have to add colour and now you have to think about the relationships all over again (this red is only deep, because it is next to this light blue… etc). It wouldn’t be such a problem if I weren’t afraid of messing the work I’ve done. good art requires experimentation, and so here I go ..toward the testing phase and discovery of colour … crossing my fingers that the colour doesn’t ruin all the wonderful relationships I’ve made thus far within this drawing.

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