Getting to spend a few hours sketching in the CSULB Japanese Garden was a nice way to slow down a normally chaotic mind. Representational sketching forces you to focus only on what you are looking at. It is easy to become lost in all of the small details and wondering how to transfer that to the paper. I do not normally do art in my spare time so these experiences are allowing me to rediscover something I always loved in grade school. Over two trips to the garden I was able to complete to following sketches. Here was my very first sketch of the first day.
This was intended to be a representational sketch but elements of abstraction are always present when trying to fill in areas that are not clearly defined by a solid shape.
Here are my next couple of sketches. Getting the shading and shadows around objects correct is very difficult. I was trying to create some perspective with the curved paths and the relative size of objects in the field of view.
Here is a more abstract sketch that I made. I had a bit of fun with this one. Part of the college experience is looking at many things and ideas as if they were under a microscope.
Sketching allows you to exercise parts of your mind that is not exercised by any other activity. Trying to judge how big, far away, light or dark an object is relative to its surroundings is a skill that must take many years (lifetimes) to master. Sketching is something that I could see myself doing again as a hobby but I would invest in the proper supplies. Light printer paper starts to roll up and becomes more difficult to handle after you have been working on it for sometime.