Sketching is an art form that has always been one of my favorite getaways. My mom has been my greatest inspiration when it comes to sketching portraits. I grew up watching her sketch portraits, and that’s how I was introduced to this work of art. Before the lockdown, this was just something restricted to the end pages of my notebooks. Over the quarantine, I had so much free time that I felt compelled to do something about it and hence, I took up a challenge to sketch as many face portraits as I could. Taking this up for CAS not only reduced my screen time (which had increased greatly during online schooling) but also helped me practice and grow in this skill.

Learning outcomes achieved: LO1, LO2 and LO4

LO-1. Identify own strengths and develop areas of growth

I was always passionate and interested in sketching but didn’t really take it up seriously. All of my portraits were an outcome of my boredom or times when I couldn’t sleep at night. I knew I could get better at it and CAS during lockdown gave me the perfect opportunity and motivation to do so. All of my initial works were rather cartoonish and unrealistic and these were the areas I knew I wanted to work upon.

LO-2. Demonstrate that challenges have been undertaken, developing new skills in the process.

I knew my areas of weaknesses and challenged myself accordingly. I was always used to sketch female faces but now I wanted to get out of that comfort zone. I often watched videos to learn different techniques and methods that artists followed, incorporating the ones that I could. Hence, I feel that I improved and became better with every portrait that I made. 

Another challenge that I undertook to fulfill the service aspect was to teach my friend who wanted to learn some techniques from me. I conducted 5 sessions as per our convenience to teach basic skills and then work on a piece step-by-step. Teaching somebody this art form wasn’t as easy as I expected it to be, and the online tutoring sessions made the entire process a lot longer. As a result of facing the challenges, I developed superior communication as I was effective in getting the contents of my sessions through to my friend.

LO-4. Show commitment to and perseverance in CAS experiences

A  learning that sketching has given me is that of perseverance and patience. Because I was committed to making each of my portraits the best versions of themselves, I was forced to go against my impatient, ineffectual attitude to attain the desired perfection. I would sit for an hour to sometimes days finishing up a piece. As an IB student there’s always a lot on our plate with all the submissions and assessments, so this experience somehow helped me with my time management skills as well. 

In conclusion, this CAS experience has helped me brush up my skills and manage my time efficiently.  More essentially, I learned how to be patient, not just with myself but also with others, understanding that everybody has a different pace. The learner profile attribute I could associate with this experience was ‘communicator’ and ‘caring’. It was important for me to make sure that my sessions gave a fruitful outcome and assisted my friend to identify his difficulties and work accordingly. Other learner profile attributes that I showed were ‘reflective’ and ‘inquirer’ since I would often watch videos to learn new ways and strokes and then reflect on my mistakes to improve and get better outcomes. This was an experience that I thoroughly enjoyed.

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