You Can’t Always Erase a Mistake, but You Can Find a Way to Blend it In

Pine Cone in CharcoalA few weeks ago I wrote about my experience in drawing a pine cone and how difficult it was to make the shape transform from the outline of a soft rose into the hard but delicate shells that protect the inside of a pine cone.

As often happens with me lately, I took the original experience one step further.  I decided to draw a companion to the pine cone and replace the candle sconces in the living room (the ones that Christian can’t stand) with the unlikely mates, a pine cone and a rose.

I bought roses to celebrate my new outlook on life and my recently discovered talents.  One of the pink roses was just starting to open and in my eyes was the same shape as the pine cone.  I tried to prop it so it would match the angle and proportions of the pine cone.  After a couple of hours decided it was fun, but it was “take one.”  I couldn’t get the proportions quite the way I wanted them to be so I called it a night but not over.

take one_first rose

I didn’t get around to “take two” for a few weeks, life and other priorities called.  But today after a long and productive day of hard work, my porch and the beautiful weather called my name and my easel.

I won’t reveal what, but I will reveal the fact that I was almost done with the drawing, I goofed big time.  It was a mistake that was bad enough that, in a previous place and time, I would have been in tears and I’d have tossed the whole thing out.

Tonight, I took a step back and looked at the tools on my table.  One of them was an eraser, “Ah ha!” I thought.

The only problem was that using the eraser only made the charcoal smudge more and the mistake seem even worse.  I took a deep breath and held a tiny piece of charcoal between my fingers, a pencil in the other hand, and the eraser within easy reach on the table.

a roseThe tool I used the most to ‘fix’ the mistake was the eraser, but as it turned out, I didn’t use it to erase.  I used it to blend, and what seemed to be a mistake, became part of the beauty.




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