Sketching in the CSULB Japanese Garden was a great experience. Despite the humidity, I had a great time admiring the different plants, animals, and scenery. It was certainly different than your average walk along the campus. And with that I was able to separate myself from the daily struggles of a student and be able to enjoy and sketch in the garden.
This one page of my thirty-second drawings. There were so many plants and other elements in the garden that I had a hard time picking which one to start with. The plants had so much details, especially the bonsai trees, and the animals added life to everything. So I started off with the inanimate things to warm up. With “no erasing” in mind I did not know how to go along with my sketches because I do erase a lot when I try to copy a raw image. It was a challenge at first but I enjoyed it more and more as I kept on sketching. So I just sketched very lightly until I thought that the image on paper matched what was in front of me. Then I just sketched darker and darker.
The leaves of the plants was probably the most challenging since it required so much detail. And if you notice, the plants that I drew were incomplete. As I was sketching, my friend Janis, began taking pictures of the ducks. Therefore, I began sketching him using the method that Professor Zucman taught us by beginning with a stick figure and just adding aspects that gave the stick figure more depth.
I did not do so well with my five-minute sketches. I tried to capture the view from the bridge outlooking the whole garden. It looked beautiful so I thought it would be nice to capture a glimpse of it on my sketchbook. Ducks were going crazy and flying everywhere so I thought I could draw one of them in action so the sketch would at least look alive. Again the plants were difficult to finish because of the fact that there were so much detail and we only had five minutes.
I really wished that I came to Japanese Garden earlier or at least on my first year as a college student. But I’m glad that this art class gave me chance to witness what I was missing. It was a beautiful and great experience and I hope we get more projects that require us to go to the garden.