Wk 8: Art Activity:Sketching in the Japanese Garden

I’ve always loved Japanese Gardens. They are always so peaceful, but yet so fun to explore. There is always a beautiful carving or a rock garden tucked away waiting for someone to discover it. There was so much to draw, it felt like an hour of sketching didn’t quite do it justice. I enjoyed doing the quick 30 second sketches because I felt it was a good way to discover what I most wanted to draw. I surprisingly enjoyed the contour drawing of the garden. I thought it would look like illegible scribbles, but it ended up looking like a really neat abstract picture of the water’s edge. My favorite was still the representational drawings, particularly the one of the branch. I think when people go to a garden to sketch, they can often assume that they should try to get the whole garden into the picture. As if it should always be about doing a landscape-type sketch that encompasses every aspect of the garden. But I find the greatest pleasure in finding something small. A single leaf, a crooked branch, or a stone statue tucked behind the foliage are all examples of tiny subjects that can be wonderful pieces of art. Sketching can be more (or in this case less) than an all-encompassing landscape. Sometimes for the best sketches, one must look to find the right subject.

-Hannah Adams

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