asking, not questioning
asking, not questioning

Dear ones,
If you’re an artist, you probably question your works and yourself quite a lot. I do so, too, and a few months ago I came to the conclusion that I actually hate drawing. Which at the same time is not true. (I still love it.)

Which is the part I love, and which is the one I hate about drawing?

What I hate about drawing

I often know exactly that I want to draw, it’s like a natural need. I also often don’t know what to draw because part of me believes that I definitely need a concept before I start. And then I think I should really use my time well and draw anything right now, because all the artists that I find cool have been drawing regularly. When I think of starting to draw there’s always a lot of pressure involved.

What I love about drawing

Placing lines and objects, textures and patterns on a sheet of paper, adding another layer of colors, watching the images grow and evolve. I love the process when it flows intuitively, when one parts leads to another and when an image grows organically into its final form. This is a completely different approach than the former one: without a concept, just armed with my favorite tools and trusting my intuition.

I’m still exhausted from that last challenging year, and regarding my drawing practice, this is perfect since my exhausted mind don’t care about concepts and what others may think and all the what-ifs. I stopped questioning what I should do, and rather started asking what the images tell me about them and about myself. I was tired of working on things I didn’t like 100% or on things I don’t really believe in. So I started to play with my favorite tools and watched myself where this was going to lead to. I promised myself not to show any of those works to anybody if I don’t like them. But the results were surprising, and I do like them a lot:

Here is a series of drawings or rather drawn collages that evolved from drawings that I made and didn’t like at all before.

Jessica Koppe "What waiting for you feels like" 2013 Jessica Koppe "why do you care now?" 2013 Jessica Koppe "sad precious thoughts" 2013 Jessica Koppe "Inner Landscape #2" Jessica Koppe "Inner Landscape #1" Jessica Koppe "choose" 2013

Each of them measures 21 x 21 cm, and is a mixed-media collage. I started to rework unloved and unfinished drawings from earlier that year. I added layer and layer of color and texture. I cut some of them into pieces and stuck them to another one. Words become more and more important in my works, and I invited them in. Something is happening in with me and my artistic practice, and I enjoy this process as much as I like the results.

Each piece teaches me something new while making it, and I learned so much about myself by working on those images. With a mixture of wonder and delight I watch them evolving, and I want to share my conclusion and this week’s pro tip to all of you who aren’t confident with their work:

Do what you love, with your favorite tools and a bag full of curiosity and trust yourself. You’re already perfect.

I send you much love!
Jessica