Wk 14- Art Experience-Japanese Garden

For this week’s art experience, we headed over to the Japanese Garden to do some sketching. I was so excited for this activity because the Japanese Garden is my favorite place on campus. I am lucky enough to live in the dorms right next to it so I like to visit it sometimes on my way back from class. I love coming here and experiencing the peacefulness and the serenity of garden. It’s the perfect place to de-stress after a long day of classes. Walking through the gates of the Japanese Garden is like walking into a story book, a movie, or an entirely new world that makes you forget about everything else.

So for this activity we were instructed to do several little sketches of the views in the beautiful garden. However, there is one rule. We are not to use our eraser AT ALL. According to our professor erasers like to make us believe that there is a perfect line out there when there really isn’t. We do not need this negativity in our sketching life. This is perhaps some of the best advice I’ve been given. I thought this would be no big deal but on several occasions I found myself having to stop my hand from flipping my pencil over to erase my lines.

As instructed, I did some 30 second sketches that were mainly drawings of the water lilies and some rocks.


For my 5 minute sketch I added some more detail to the other sketches by drawing more plants and rocks and tried to do some trees doing the contour technique on some trees but that was a little bit hard so they ended up looking a little abstract. Which worked out perfectly for the abstract drawing and so I made all my trees a little abstract looking.


For the representation sketch I focused on drawing one of the pretty Japanese lanterns by the water. It was a little easier to do this one because the lines are a lot straighter and more visible than with the trees and plants.


Overall, this was probably one of my favorite art activities we have done. Sitting in the Japanese Garden sketching was so relaxing and made forget about the impending doom of finals. I should definitely do this more often. Here is my final sketch of the garden.


Now here real are some pictures of the beautiful Japanese Garden because my sketches don’t do it any justice. 🙂

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Wk10- Art Experience-The Wedge


The horror.

The USU Wedge.


Ever since my very first day as a freshman here at CSULB, I have always used the Wedge as a passage to get to where I was going. To be completely honest I think its hilarious that we are doing this assignment to redesign the architecture of it because I have always thought it was a problem as well! It’s a pedestrian traffic nightmare! Like what was going on in the architect’s mind when he decided to design this weird pillar/wall like thing and leave a tiny little space in the corner just big enough for a person to squeeze through? Like, someone please send him or her back to architecture school or something…seriously.



Anyway, after four years at this school and using and observing others use the wedge, I have narrowed it down as to why this causes traffic. The truth is… we are all just LAZY. It is so much easier to pass through the wedge than to walk the 20 steps to go around the pillar/wall thing. But in our defense, we have classes we need to go to and we need to go to them fast so we cannot afford those extra steps and go around. We want to take the easy way.


So with that being said. I have designed my own solution to the problem.

Multiple wedges. 🙂

With this giant, gray, marble pillar/wall thing out of the way, I believe the congestion of people in this area with cease and the flow will be as smooth as a river. I have taken the original design and tweaked it just a bit. I decided to take out the dark gray marble wall thing and split it in to several pillars. That way there will MORE THAN ONE WEDGE! I know some people like the wedge and hold much affection for it so I couldn’t completely get rid of it. So I created a few more wedges for students to hurriedly squeeze by while they go to class. That way traffic can flow in and out through the wedge and people don’t have to wait for the line of traffic to stop coming from one direction to go in the other direction. Problem solved! I hope… I’m no architect but this is sure better then the original design.  People will definitely talk about what a genius idea this was for years to come. 🙂

Wk9-Art Experience-Graffiti

For this week’s art activity we get to do some graffiti! I was really excited to do this activity since I know how to do a little bit of graffiti. I am absolutely not a pro at it but I know the basics. In the 7th grade I took an art class and my teacher taught us how to do block and bubble letter and to make them look 3D. I haven’t really practiced much since then, haha but I called on all those skills I learned to do this activity hoping it would come out decent looking.

So I didn’t go to the Venice Art Walls for this and just preferred to do this at home. I used some acrylic paints I had and a canvas to paint my graffiti on. (My parents didn’t want to let me use a wall in the backyard 😦 lol) It was a beautiful day today so I took my materials outside, made myself a cup of tea and started sketching.

Green tea with a hint of mint.

While I was sketching, my nosy little dog decided to come and check out what I was doing. For her, that means jumping up on the table, stepping all over my canvas and sticking her nose in my paints. -____- She’s too cute to get mad at though haha.

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After I got my dog out of the way, I finished my sketch which actually took me a long time because I’m such a perfectionist. It was a little frustrating. I ended up sketching my last name Garcia. Then the fun part came. The painting! I chose three colors; Blue, Purple and Lavender. I painted each letter by doing a sort of ombre/ color gradation starting with the darkest color blue and ending with the lightest color lavender.

I outlined all the letters with black and added some 3D effect to them. Then, I decided to take a break and took my sister and cousin for some frozen yogurt at Yogurtland. Haha. I wish I had a picture for you but the coconut and Dutch chocolate froyo was WAY too good to stop and take a picture.

But anyway, after that little distraction I came back to finish my graffiti.  I added some white lines to make the shadows stand out more, made some black paint drip off the bottom and DONE. Here is the outcome below.


I’m really glad I got to do this activity and revisit some of my old lessons on graffiti. It was an enjoyable way to spend my evening.

Wk8-Art Experience-Finger Painting

For this week’s art activity we did finger painting! I love painting and am a painter myself but I’d never tried painting with my fingers before. Also, I’d never made an abstract painting  either so this was all new to me. So for the materials we used some canvases I had stashed away and some craft paints.

Once again, I had my sister do this art activity with me. I think she’s pretty much done all of them with me. Art is just more fun when you experience with someone else. Anyway, as instructed we only used 3 colors (I choose the primaries red, blue, yellow and Nathalie choose orange, purple and red). Then, we played some music, we got our hands dirty and started painting. We knew it was supposed to be abstract so we tried to just feel the paint like my professor said and let the colors do the talking.


At first I didn’t know what the heck I was doing. As a painter, I’m so used to knowing what is going to be the outcome and having a sketch on the canvas to guide me where to put my brush. So with no brush and no guide I felt a little blind and a little frustrated. After a while of just kind of moving the paint around my canvas it finally started to resemble something! Yay! It kind of looks like a sunset! An abstract sunset of course. And my sister did this rainbow looking painting which was also pretty cool!

My finger painting.
My sister’s finger painting on the right.

Overall, this whole experience was so fun! After it stopped being frustrating, it started feeling kind of nice not to be restricted by a brush and a sketch. I was able to move the paint with my fingers where ever I chose and I think the painting still came out decent.