Thursday, July 28, 2011

Elements of My Art

Carol Sloan here again.
I must be the only one that isn't on vacation on the list.

When I begin a new piece of artwork, I never really consider what I am going to put into it.
I don't think about where I will start or where I will finish...
I typically start from the "Hey, that would be a great idea!" point of view.
I tend to jump right in, worrying about running out of things (like room on the page) when it actually happens.
Like this piece of artwork.
It's called "The Dancing Elephant"

I love this silly, happy little elephant.
But when I drew her, she kicked her back foot up so high that it went right off that page!
Of course, since I (usually) never sketch things in pencil first I couldn't go back and re-configure the entire drawing.
Or convince her to drop that back foot a little.
But you really can't do anything with a happy elephant anyway- they're going to kick up their heels no matter what you try to make them do...
Instead of trashing the entire drawing, I decided to just draw her tail going off the page as well.
I figured that, in the grand scheme of things, no one would really notice that she was falling off the page.
Or dancing in to it.

That is - until I told all of you...

My point is this - one of the elements of my art is going with the flow.
Learning to work with what you're got in front of you...what you've already done.
I could have thrown this young girl away and look at all the smiles I would have trashed as well!
Instead, I stuck with it, added a few washes of acrylic paint and a ton of interesting tiny details and
introduced my Dancing Elephant to the world.

Maybe I should have called her "Tiny Dancer"...

These are a few of the things that we will be talking about at my "Whimsical Mark Making" class at Textile Evolution in Colorado Springs, Colorado on August 20.
We will also talk about drawing on fabric and what tools you can use to add color to your drawings as well.
This is a "no experience required" class!
Won't you join me?


  1. I love your adorable,happy elephant...and the fact that you drew her foot right off the page!

  2. I also like your little elephant and the fact that you didn't quit. I've been playing around with a permanent pen instead of a pencil and it is freeing to continue on even if it doesn't turn out as you wanted. It makes you think of other solutions.

  3. Sharon- you are exactly right about thinking of other solutions! That is one of the things about drawing with a pen that helps you to grow quicker (I think)...being forced to look for other solutions to design issues.
    @bohemiannie! art - Thank you! I'd never do anything if it had to be perfect...!

  4. This is the best elephant ever!

  5. you made me smile I love her and the whimsy you write about her.....thank you for sharing!!!!

  6. That is what I am trying to teach myself how to do...go with the's so hard sometimes! Love the Elephant by the way...never noticed the foot till you mentioned it.

  7. I love her. She is really a happy looking elephant! Her back foot didn't leave the page; it's coming into the page as she is dancing in ready to spread joy.


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