The Vanishing Hibiscus Blossom

Sketch by Tatiana

With a little break in the clouds, this MYP4 class was able to sneak outside and change the climate of the studio experience. Tatiana selected the location and focus as she pointed towards two flowering bushes as subject matter to be sketched within the time permitted. The ground beneath was soaked so we sat on stools and listened to The Smashing Pumpkins from the 80’s. Competing with our choice of music was the pounding sounds from the neighboring construction site, PYP children playing next door and the exciting roar from the MPH, but at times, all were drowned out by the Baya Weavers nesting just overhead.

It’s funny how perspective changes when life slows down just a little. To be successful in the MYP Visual Arts, skill must be constantly watched and noted and sketching outdoors offers the perfect opportunity. For those who selected their composition with a certain flower in view, it only took seconds to get lost in this tiny corner of our campus. With our eyes focused on the outer and inner contour lines as the pencil or pen met paper, one quick look down and then glance back to find the point of view and it vanishes. Almost simultaneously, for those who were closely observing, there was one thing missing. It was that nice rose red hibiscus blossom that vanished before our eyes.

While the others searched for what they thought was being rendered beautifully accurate. I spoke up and asked, “Wasn’t there a flower right there?” Quickly the class answered, “Yeah there was…..” and Arjun replied, “ I watched it fall to the ground.” A missing flower was all that it took to test our confidence in representing something so simple.

Sketch by Sarah

Our Statement of Inquiry focuses on self-esteem and it’s effects on an artist’s style. This fun activity presented an opportunity that gave us a real example of the impact on our own confidence in sketching in an unfamiliar and very public space. Aware of the other artists all around us, as well as spectators and their peering eyes, the student artist struggle between selection of subject matter, point of view, proximity and style that will best represents their keen eye for aesthetics. It all boils down to the navigation of confidence and self-esteem that only an artist knows and understands.

“Our SOI for the unit is “Artist’s perspective and self-esteem is effected as style is developed.” Today we went outside to experience how does our self-esteem gets affected when we are creating artwork in a new environment. I think the experience was very calm and positive since I thought an open area gives us a lot of positive energy which also gave me confidence (high self-esteem) to create better artwork.”    By Smit

“Today I have been drawing nature outside while listening to music. The music and the surroundings made me feel calm and relaxed as there were no distractions which made my drawing skills enriched. It was a peaceful experience and I had a great time.”   By  Tanmay

“When drawing outside I felt a sense of tranquillity and like it was only me, my work and nature. I would link that feeling to our SOI of how self-esteem affects an artist’s style because in different settings you feel different about oneself and their work.” By Tatiana

“It was a calm experience just sitting outside and drawing with music on, the entire time I felt relaxed.” By Arjun

“I’ve realised that drawing outside gives me a higher sense of freedom and personally for me there is more inspiration since I prefer drawing nature. Also, since being outside makes me feel alone when I’m drawing and I can draw better without worrying about the outcome.” By Sarah