A Basic Design assignment: find a picture. Simplify it. Enlarge it, use the graphing method (re-drawing it to proportion). Paint it with black acrylic. I see the merit in this assignment: teaching students how to select and represent visual elements that pack a punch. The acrylic was a bad move; I did another (different) picture prior to this one and my lines were just all over the place and sloppy. With this one, I simplified the picture to the point of erasing most of his face, and added some stripes in an otherwise unremarkable and uniform black. Also arranged the spectacle frames into a sort of "??" expression. Since I had paid my dues with the graphing/proportion hand-draw method, I treated myself to a shortcut and simply traced the figure I had simplified and inked it with Higgins. I'm okay with the results; in fact I think it's kinda cool.
(is it a function of me hanging out with a younger crowd at college that I am saying 'cool' a lot?)
Interesting that the bulk of the assignments in my art classes are just what I asked for: exercises that I wouldn't normally gravitate towards or even have a proclivity for. At first I felt bruised and outraged: I wanted to show my instructors that I'm an artist in my own right, and I've produced some pretty cool shit, dammit! With these assignments, I haven't felt any real affinity or enthusiasm for them. But you know what?
You don't achieve anywhere without putting in the work. And sometimes, the work is just plain ol' hard work and you don't have to like it but you have to do it. So sometimes I still fight it (that @@#W#% collage, for example) but I'm also learning to just ease into it, find a rhythm and let myself enjoy the process.
Hmmmm........value. Yes, grasshopper, value the process.