The Rest of the Story

About a month ago I featured my adventures in an online class called Abstract-A-Licious, run by Lyric Kinard. The class ended in mid-October, so I want to show you my responses to the last class exercises. We were to take some of our abstractions and develop them further into a design in fabric.

I used my drawings from earlier lessons, though there was no requirement to do so. Lyric encouraged us to “go rogue” if that’s what worked for us.

I began with my Degas dancer abstraction. First, though, I played with my tracing paper drawings just for fun.

 Maybe an idea for a transparency work?

The abstraction I used.

First version, which Lyric said was top heavy.
Second version, flipped and shapes added. From here on, I stopped fusing the shapes and just laid them down.


Third version, color and position of “ball” changed. Both Lyric and I think it still needs work, but I need the perspective of time.

For my final class project I cut a window in a sheet of paper and selected part of a drawing for a paper collage design. I think this design was to be in fabric and more finished than mine is, but I had the colors I wanted in paper only. I hope to make it in fabric, though the translation will be tricky.

Lyric commented, “There is a fantastic flow in this work… lots of organic shapes that lead the eye from one place to another. It’s in a mostly analogous color scheme so the colors aren’t really competing with each other. The point on the yellow really moves your eye up to the orange then swings it back down and around.”

One side benefit I got from the class came from Lyric’s push to articulate why I made my design decisions. Many I thought were intuitive actually were rational. I’ve begun to see that it’s important for an artist to be able to talk another person through her work.

Each online class I’ve taken has had varied student participation and interactions. I think Lyric’s class began with about 15 students. Just two of us completed all the units. I know at least one student was preoccupied with Hurricane Florence, and had very limited internet access. Still, I wonder why so many of the others never posted beyond the introductory unit. Lyric was very supportive in her comments so I hope students didn’t fear criticism. While you can read and benefit from the class materials, you really learn by doing the work.

6 Comments

Filed under Commentary, Project Ideas

6 responses to “The Rest of the Story

  1. Rosemaryflower

    What a fun experience.
    Perhaps others got tangled in some other escapade or they did not appreciate criticism. That will turn some people away, but if you are taking a class from someone knowledgeable and daring, then you should expect the encouragement to refine your ideas, or stretch a little. I have never had a class like this.

    • I think the course materials made it clear Lyric would be giving us feedback, and that there was no expectation of polished work. It was meant as practice. I guess I’m cheap enough to go through with the course once I paid for it. Besides, I had fun with the drawings.

  2. Sounds like a good class for you, in a variety of ways. As to why people don’t follow through, I can only guess from my own experience. I’ve signed up for multiple things (lessons/classes) over the last few years that I didn’t complete. For one, in particular, my life got crazy between the time I signed up and the time it actually happened. It was a “real time” online class and after missing the first couple, I couldn’t catch up. I’ve also purchased a couple of craftsy classes that I haven’t done, and then there is the Spanish class Jim and I bought to prepare for our Peru trip. With all that, I’d say that I’m not very committed to online classes, or to the self-study the Spanish class required. OTOH, I am pretty good about researching a topic on my own, and I do quite well when there is a teacher in front of me. So maybe it just takes a bit to find our own best way of learning.

    • I appreciate online classes because I don’t have to schlep all my supplies to some location, which gets hard when you’re flying. The classes I’ve taken are forgiving as to when you do the work. Usually there’s a cutoff beyond which the teacher won’t comment, but the lessons stay up for some months. Also, many teachers compile a PDF you can save to your computer and use at your leisure. My problems with in person classes usually revolves around a few students hogging the teacher. Also, it’s hard to rewind a live talk if you don’t understand something.

  3. I like Lyric Kinard and have learned from her articles and videos. Sounds like I need to check on this class! Thanks for the review 🙂

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