Foundations Friday 12: Reviewing Your Work

May 27, 2016 | 3 Comments

Last week I said on Facebook that Foundations Lesson 11 was my favourite as it explained the way I love to work. But the final Lesson 12 was really the most enjoyable of them all – by far!

There was no new content, but instead I did a wrap-up of all the course material and showed how every lesson tied together and then reviewed the work of 30 people who did the original first run of Foundations. This was a way for me to demonstrate how all the Foundations concepts could be put into action.

I printed out a copy of the sketch, photo and notes from each person and then scribbled thumbnails and notes down the side summarising my thoughts. I then talked through these sheets in 40 minutes of video and this is what is available in Lesson 12 of the Foundations (self directed) course.

This lesson was special on a number of different levels:

  • I really enjoy looking at and thinking about other people’s work and especially doing thumbnails to explain my thoughts by these analytical diagrams.
  • It was really fun to group the work together into a few themes and then start the camera rolling while I talked my way through them.
  • I felt really connected with the people doing the course as they all included a description of their struggles while doing their sketch.
  • It felt most like my face to face workshops! Of course no online experience comes close to real interaction, but by sharing thoughts about the process it felt more real. BTW the opening image is a photo of my sketchbooks from some local workshops. These are pages of thumbnails from my discussions with various participants when we are out on location – I then add a few more notes, scan them and send to the whole group later.

I enjoyed this part of the course so much, and got great feedback that others found it very helpful. So I have decided that in my upcoming SketchingNow Buildings course I will have two similar review weeks (at week 3 and 6).

But to get back to Foundations, The final assignment for the course is not a sketch. It was for everyone to really think careful about three important aspects that they picked up during the 12 lessons and to write them down in an effort to remember and absorb these into their own work. The responses are such an incredible read!

My 3 big takeaways at the time (Feb 2015) were:

  1. I have been struck by how foundational the three ways of visual thinking are and how much they relate to each other. I have ideas about how to develop this further and in particular about how Constructing Volumes fits in with Abstracting Shapes.
  2. I have new appreciation of how much we lengthen foreshortened objects and how helpful a little measuring is. So I want to be more conscious of nailing a few major edges at the beginning of my sketches.
  3. I was reminded by Lesson 10’s thumbnails (the ones that I did during the demo and especially some of the participants thumbnail pages) that I should do these more often, so I can record my surroundings more quicker. I don’t need to do a ‘final’ ink and wash painting every time.

Wow! I can’t believe how spot on they are what is in my head right at the moment!

Anyway, I am almost at the end of my Foundations Friday series, but I’ll have one more in this series as a wrap-up next week.

Have you done the Foundations course? What were your takeaways at the time you finished? Are you still thinking about them – or something different?


  • Carole Jurack says:

    There is a wealth of information in these Friday blogs, Liz … All one has to do is look through each one to see that it has taken a spot-on focus on your part to assemble the building blocks for us. I have printed them off and will refer to them when I take your September course (and even before) as I endeavor to brave the out-of-doors with my pens, paints & paper! THANK YOU!

  • Julie-Anne Rogers says:

    I had been really enjoying the Foundations course but life got in the way halfway through and I stalled. I am doing some enforced rest at home at the moment so you have just poked me to get started again. Now I am excited about today so thanks, Liz!

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