I used to draw a lot, and though I won’t state any definitive judgements on whether I was good or bad, I certainly wasn’t the best, though I did rather enjoy myself. Though I drew all the time, I never really improved very much. I guess I never really had a point of reference to compare myself to, in a way, and there were no classes where I could just sit and draw all the time instead of paying attention to what was going on.
In high school, I became friends with a girl who was absolutely phenomenal, and we would sit next to each other in our classes and draw together. Sometimes I would just sit there and watch her draw, and I would think about the strokes of her pencil and how she was able to draw almost anything. I guess I was able to somehow absorb her technique because I started getting better, too. We had a lot of time to draw; I mean it was high school so it’s not like we were learning anything substantial.
Once I came to college, I didn’t really draw anymore. At first it was because I didn’t feel like it, I was too tired, I was too depressed, or I had no idea what even to draw. The thing is I just kind of stopped. Sure, every once in a while I’d take out my sketchbook and maybe doodle a couple things, but that was maybe once or twice a month at best, and if I put my pencil down to do something else I didn’t really have the motivation to pick it back up and finish what I had started.
When I finally regained my will to draw, I was too busy to actually act on it. It would always happen around times where I had a bajillion tests, essays or projects, and wasting two hours on something completely unrelated would have delayed me getting to bed until five in the morning. I just didn’t have time.
So, it was this vicious cycle of either being too unmotivated to draw or too busy to draw, that when I was motivated I was too busy, and when I had nothing to do I was too unmotivated. You may think that I’m going to say something about overcoming this, but you’re wrong. I’m still wedged firmly in the wheel of unmotivation, so no inspirational resolutions here.
This weekend I did start making art again, and I had forgotten how satisfying it was. It was one of those rare occasions when my motivation to do art coincided with me not being very busy. I know that my motivation will probably fade within the next three or four days but I’d like to make use of it as much as I can until that happens.
Lauren Shroeter is a junior religion and geology major.