For the last ten days, I have been drawing Mater Ping Xiao Po of the movie the Kung Fu Panda in the cartoon drawing course I have been doing since August this year.
After a week of drawing just circles, we moved on to animals (pig, hippopotamus, dog and teddy bear) and then spent four weeks on Snoopy, Charlie Brown, Lucy, Sally, and Linus. Although the initial days were challenging but spending a month on Peanuts’ characters brought me to the comfort zone.
Ping Po was a challenge. For a start, he was a 3D character with no distinct lines like Snoopy or Charlie and his friends. A lot of facial features were depicted by shading. And each figure had different facial expressions which I was not able to replicate. After day three, I was a lot behind than the other participants who were posting proportionate and expressive Po on Instagram.
Then Master Ping Xiao P himself came to rescue and taught me his three favorite lessons.
Believe in yourself he said.
If you want to succeed then don’t compare yourself to others. You have to make your own journey, getting disheartened by other’s progress will not make you any better. I got his message. Rather than giving up and going back to my comfort zone, I slowed down.
There is no secret ingredient, it’s you.
There is no short cut, no secret recipe just plain hard work, and focus. It’s you and the hard work that will help you grow and learn. Nothing you can achieve overnight and gain mastery in.
I focused first just on the face, getting the muzzle right. Eyes were next, I was able to align them so that they looked in the same direction.
Anything is possible when you have inner peace.
Ping Po said in Master Oogway voice, “Your mind is like this water, my friend. When it gets agitated, it becomes difficult to see. But if you allow it to settle, the answer becomes clear.”
Slowing down allowed me to see the alignment of the eyes and head better. I started shading around the muzzle and the side of the face. The result was remarkable.
Sticking with the Po, for two weeks, drawing each day without giving up was a lesson that nothing beats daily practice. I only spend half an hour on the drawing each day, sometimes I even break it up in two sessions of fifteen minutes each.
I need to do the same with blogging. It is easier to write a blog post every day and than twice or three times a week. Improvement will be worth the effort.