Jan 14, 2014

To sketch in public.

When I was in high school I often took a bus home, especially in my last year; often the bus got delayed, or if it got there in time, it was so full, the driver didn't even bother to stop and just derived by the bus stop. So, before the era of smart phones and tablets, I got used to just sit down at the bus stop and doodle to pass the time while waiting on the bus.
At first I would rarely look up from my sketch book, since I was drawing comic characters or abstract shapes (abstract shapes sound nicer than 'random swirls') .
As time when by, however, I wanted to test myself by drawing what was surrounding me, to draw "real things" just to see how good (or bad) I was at doing it.
The result; I was looking up from my sketch book all the time, and it didn't took me long to notice that people get, let's say, uncomfortable when you are looking down and up like a maniac drawing your surroundings.
Above, the view from the bus stop near my high school, the only interesting thing there to draw really was a pedestrian bridge that crossed the street.
When you are on a group of people who are drawing a specific 'something' to draw, nobody bats an eye for more than 2 seconds. But when you sit by yourself and draw something uneventful that for some reason sparks you interest, like a cool house, or a crooked street, people seem to think you are up to something.
May be it's just me being paranoid, but that's why I always felt a little self conscious pulling out a sketch book on public.
Once I got into architecture school tho, and everyone was drawing in the side walk, I was relieved. I thought "This is the way it ought to be!"
Up until I started noticing that most people who draw outside in university do it for show, and just for show, with a smug expression of "oh, why yes! I'm a true artist"
And I started to wonder
"Do I also look like I'm trying to prove the world how special I am while drawing outside?
  Do I look like a douche?"
It's not that I think too much about this sort of stuff. Who has time to worry about what people may or may not think? Certainly not me!
But just to be clear: I only draw outside when no one is around.

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