Putting this Drawing Aside

After another failed attempt at rescuing this drawing I decided to put the Princess Bride drawing aside for a while and come back to it later.

I’ve never had a piece start out so well and fail so badly. Regardless of the reason why it’s not working out I’ve learned a lot from it. Also, this is the first Fandom Fitness drawing that has a full composition to it which is a bit outside of my comfort zone and I find that a huge positive.

It’s only we stretch outside our comfort zones do we have a chance at greater heights of excellence. Unfortunately we also have a change of falling flat on our face. We have to be willing to take the chance and learn from the outcome.

Princess Bride drawing

Previous Princess Bride Drawing Posts


The normal 15 minute warm-up in graphite.


One Minute Gestures

The one minute gestures exercise from The Natural Way to Draw hasn’t gotten any easier and I don’t think it every will. I’m at a constant battle with myself for every one minute gesture by trying to keep the whole of the figure in mind while at the same time instilling some details and accuracy to the photo.

Daily Composition and Sketch

This is a very old sketch book that I never filled up so I’m drawing on all of the underside pages. This page happens to have some oil paint stains on it, but I ignored them and drew a glass over them.

The composition today is of a guy playing Frisbee golf. I wanted to capture the action in his body right as he was letting the disk go. He had this overhand way of throwing the disk that was interesting.

daily composition and sketch

What went well, what was awesome! Celebrate It!

I got a ton done on the website today and began moving over zoofit.net also. Even though I decided to put the Princess Bride drawing aside for a while this was a good day.

What needs work? What did you learn?

I need to analyze my mistakes from this Fandom Fitness drawing and try not to repeat it for any of the others.

How am I going to Optimize moving forward?

Tomorrow, before starting the next drawing I’ll jot down some notes and pans to avoid the Princess Bride pitfalls.


  1. Hey Chris,

    Don’t that this the wrong way, but it’s nice to see you put aside a piece of art that’s not working as you hope. Sometimes you seem like a machine the way you can knock out these Fandom Fitness drawings! LOL!

    Seriously: I thought the piece was going rather well and was eager to see the finished product. But I know that when what we’re doing is not keeping some kind of pace with our vision, it can be hard to continue.

    I often find the biggest lessons are hidden within failure. A long time ago, I went to a writing workshop in Lincoln City, OR, and the instructor taught with what he called “deep end” learning. I can’t remember the schedule in any detail, but basically it went something like this.

    1) We’d get a short-story assignment during our evening session, around 8 p.m. We were told to focus on a writing technqiue, such as dialect. (One character from NY, one from TX, one from Mexico — that sort of thing.)

    2) The story ws due before the next evening session — so we had about 24 hours to write the thing. We also had to email our stories to everyone else at the workshop.

    3) Once we turned our stories, he would then talk about how to write diction.

    4) The following day, we would gather for critiques. On top of our writing assignments, we had to read all the other stories before the critique session. (This was a VERY intense workshop!) He read our stories, too, and would not only critique them for the main story elements, but also on whatever writing technique we were working on.

    The results of this method were fairly astounding because you’ve already struggled with a technique (dialect, for example) for 15 to 20 pages, then read another 15 to 20 stories by writers all trying to write good dialect, and so his talk on dialect followed by his critiques of our stories really drove home key points.

    Simply put — he’d throw you into the deep end and watch you struggle before teaching you how to swim.

    I find this approach works really well with art. Let me struggle and fail, and then show me how to do it.

    At any rate, I don’t know why I wrote all of this, but I did, so I’m loath to delete it. But I’m glad to hear that you leanred in your failure because in my opinion, that is the only way to learn.

    Finally … the guy with the frisbee … when I first saw it before I read your commentws I thought, “Where in the world was Christ that he saw a guy shooting a gun into the air — Texas?” LOL!

    Peace, brother.

    • Haha! He does look like he’s shooting in the air. Thanks for all that you wrote! I agree sometimes I need to take a rest day where I just do my minimum and let my brain settle for the next drawing. I understand what you’re saying with being thrown into the deep end. It’s similar to the wisdom in Optimize. We want to stretch outside our comfort zone but not so far that we snap. The Princess Bride drawing is definitely a stretch for me and I don’t think it’s just the drawing that is the problem. Everything I have going on right now has come together to cause issues with it. I’m going to take today to get things in order and rest my brain for a bit. But I will continue to to do art every day for the rest of my life, that is no stretch for me any longer, at this point it’s like waking up in the morning. It’s just something I do, my repeated being-ness. 🙂

  2. Everything Jeff said. I have experiences where I don’t seem to go anywhere, or not the direction I hoped, and I need to readjust my navigation, or sometimes (and I don’t think this will be the case), I have to start all over.
    Going back to kindergarten. Go back to the level where you were achieving success, and try again. Have some fun with success. Let the momentum bring you back to the challenge.

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