Is It Really A Mistake If No One Notices?

8:47 AM

English Sparrow's Nesting Material
Pineapple Journal
5.5 x 5.5
Watercolor and Ink
As it turns out, I drew this quick sketch of a English Sparrow's nesting material back in early June. We were enjoying one last lunch outside at a nearby restaurant before the heat of Florida's summers makes it impossible to enjoy dining outside....unless you enjoy eating in a sauna.

Once our food arrived, I abandoned the page. Completely.

When I drew the sketch at the tea house, I drew on a blank page opposite this page. Not because I haven't sketched in this sketchbook since early June but because I tend to skip pages in my sketchbook if I want to do a full spread across both pages. This page happened to be blank for that reason.

One of the reasons why I'm not fanatical about dating my sketches is because I not only jump around  within the pages of my sketchbook, but I also jump from sketchbook to sketchbook. It becomes confusing when I date my sketches. Instead, I note when I began a sketchbook and when I filled the last page.

However, there's another reason I abandoned this page and then left it unfinished...from the very first mark I put down on the page, I had made a mistake on perspective.

That big black "I" beam? Yeah, that's the first thing I drew and it should have been at the same angle as the roof lines over the bricks on the left side of the sketch.

Would you have noticed if I had not pointed it out?

One of the things I say repeatedly on Imaginary Trips is that most people don't "see a mistake" until we point it out to them.

Chances are good that at least some of you did not notice the "mistake" until I pointed it out. Some of you may still not see it and yet others knew right away.

Is there a moral to the story? Yes, I think so.

Whereas this isn't an accurate sketch, I enjoyed finishing it—mistake and all. It was fun playing with pigments to get the look of the bricks. It also captures a memory of a lovely lunch we had this spring watching the birds build their nests. Lastly, the "mistake" is not "fatal" to the work.

They seldom are.

What are you avoiding working on or finishing because it's not perfect or even "mistake-free?"

Go ahead and get to work on finishing up...if you're anything like me, you'll find yourself enjoying it all the more because it's not perfect. There's freedom there to play and experiment.

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