Lucky Drawing 108. My eighth online class session in the Lucky School of Art. Nov 24 to Dec 21, 2015. All drawing skill levels, students 18 and over. Now taking registration for up to 30 students. Take a walk on the wild side of making art!

Susan Shie

Turtle Moon Studios 2612 Armstrong Drive, Wooster, Ohio, 44691-1806.

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Oasis Girls enjoy Quiche at the Cabin. ©Susan Shie 2015

"Oasis Girls Enjoy Quiche at the Cabin at Miller Lakes." ©Susan Shie 2015. I started this drawing right after getting home from a gathering at Mady's Cabin, with only one Oasis girl missing, since there are only seven of us actively coming to our gatherings anymore. Midge brought her dog Chloe though. We were celebrating Margi and my mutual birthday, September 28th. This is 14 x 22", a double page spread in my big hardbound sketchbook, finished 10-26-15. Rub-a-Dub marker, watercolor, and gel pen. The paper fortune says "Prsoperity and love are in reach." I always choose the fortune from a pile of them, at random, so it must be true!

Off-beat and very NOT about HOW TO DRAW the traditional way, my online drawing classes will get you drawing better and enjoying it more! Promise!! ! Registration is open now for Lucky Drawing 108, Nov 24 - Dec 21, 2015, which will run as a 4-week session, that you can continue to take, as when people start taking piano lessons or a yoga class that continues over a long time. But you can also take it for just one or two 4-week sessions, or pop in and out over the years. There will usually be a 2-week break between the 4-week sessions, and you won't miss anything if you are in and out of the sessions over time. You are very welcome to come to this class as a new drawing student or a returning one. You don't need to have taken a drawing class from me or anywhere else before. I will always have some brand new students and some repeaters in all my 4-week sessions, and the classes will always have students with all levels of drawing skills. Each artist's personal best is what we're focused on.

The class is much more about expressing yourself through drawing, rather than making the best drawing in the class. We work with making narrative drawings of our ideas and stories, rather than me giving traditional formal exercises or teaching rules used in drawing. So we're not dealing with perfection of drawing, but rather with learning to open up and express ourselves without formal rules or judgment. I guess you could compare my teaching style with the Montessori style of teaching. It's about self expression and independent exploration. But I bring it all together, as we share themes and encourage each other with supportive commentary on the drawings each of us uploads to the Facebook priate group that is our classroom.

This class will be from Tuesday November 24 through Monday, December 21, 2015, online in a private Facebook group, which I'll leave up for a year from its starting date, so you can go back and reference it, or find friends you made there. This FB group can only be seen by the people who are in the class, so all that we post and say is totally private among us. You must have a Facebook account and you and I must be Facebook friends, in order for me to include you in the class. You must be able to photo your class drawings and upload them to the classroom, in order for us all to see your work.

In this class, we are only doing actual freehand drawing with real art supplies on real paper in the 11 x 14" (or optional smaller) hardbound sketchbooks, and we are NOT doing any iPad or other digital drawing, tracing, or collage. There are classes for digital drawing, but this one isn't. So thanks for understanding that and drawing freehand on paper in this class.

I met a fascinating woman named Bet Ison, at the reception for STITCH, a show I juried at the Claypool-Young Gallery of Morehead State University in Kentucky on August 26, 2015. We were discussing how so many artists have never learned to draw and are afraid to draw. She threw her head back and laughed: "I never let not knowing how to draw stop me!!!" I got her permission to quote this gem of insight! And I want you to take it to heart!

I began teaching online in January, 2015, though I have been teaching drawing since 1981, when I began teaching undergrads Drawing I and II at Kent State University's School of Art. My Lucky Drawing class session numbers (101, 102, 103, etc) do not mean you need to take one class in order to take the next or another class later. They are not sequential, but are just numbers to let us know which session we're in. Each student in the class is going at their own pace, at their own level, during any given session.

My Lucky 7 Plan: If you take 6 full-time-student classes with me, you get the 7th class free. Stick with me and receive a free online class!

To take the class, you and I must become Facebook friends, so I can invite you to be a member of the secret FB class group, which no one but us will ever be able to access on Facebook. If we aren't already FB friends, please send me a friend request, so that I'll be able to invite you into the group, which I'll open on the evening of Nov 22, two days before the class actually starts, so we can get organized, and you can learn how to use the page to upload images of your drawings to your album there.

Audit option for returning Lucky Drawing students: This is an option for students who have already taken my Lucky Drawing online classes as full-time students, and who think they're too busy to do the drawing assignments for the class. Audit students have all class privileges except being able to post their drawings. They can see the class activity, comment on the drawings the full-time students post, and watch my videos. They just cannot post their own works at all and can't have an album. Auditing costs exactly half of the price of being a full-time student.

Dalai Lama 80th BD drawing. ©Susan Shie 2015.

Dalai Lama and Burt at 80." ©Susan Shie 2015. The Dalai Lama celebrated his 80th birthday on July 6, 2015, and Burt Shavitz of Burt's Bees passed away at 80, on July 5. I wanted to honor both of them, and felt that their being the same age, and both being very groovy was reason enough to put them together in this drawing, which also includes the Sweet Peas my daughter Gretchen brought me from her garden in Lakewood, Ohio. I hope my drawing honors both men for their peacefilled lives, walking gently on the Earth. This drawing was made for the first Special Event drawing challenge for Lucky Drawing 105, to make a drawing about the Dalai Lama's 80th birthday. Many of my students took the challenge and made lovely artworks about His Holiness.

How to pay for this class: If you live in the US, the class fee is $160, if you pay with PayPal, and $155 if you mail me a personal check. If you live in another country, please use PayPal and send me $165, which will cover the currency exchange fee PP charges me. (Returning Lucky Drawing students who choose the audit option pay half price, but cannot submit drawings to the class.)

However you’re paying, please email me at, to let me know that you are sending payment, so I can put your name on my class list. I will also need your phone number and street address.

For PayPal payment, go to your PayPal account and send your fee to my email address, The name on the account is my husband, James Acord. When I receive your payment notice from PayPal, I will email you and let you know that you’re enrolled in the class. If you've never used PayPal before and want to use it to pay me, email me, and I'll send you instructions on how to use PayPal.

For personal check payment, email me your intention to take the class, and then send $155 to Susan Shie, 2612 Armstrong DRIVE, Wooster, Ohio 44691. When I receive your check in the mail, I will email you and let you know that you’re enrolled in the class.

Along with the class description here, I've put in some of my own recent drawings, as well as a supply list near the bottom of the page and a little bio about me. So be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom of the page.

A woman interested in taking this class wrote to me: “If you want some early feedback: I don’t want to sit around drawing still life stuff. I am scared of drawing anyway. I want to do fun stuff that resembles the real but doesn’t have to look like a replica. I need a kick in the pants or incentive to overcome the fear of drawing. I love funky stuff and funky colors!" I wanted you to read that quote, because that's exactly the kind of students I'm looking for!

Drawing @Susan Shie 2014.

Above: "St Judy's Comet." ©Susan Shie 2014. drawing in large sketchbook, with pen, colored pencil, and watercolor. This piece was made for the drawing assignment "Draw a Song," and uses Paul Simon's "St Judy's Comet" as the song, and began with a photo of a friend putting his son to sleep, which is what Paul Simon was singing about in this song. My friend Carson's son was about 2 and a half months old at the time of the photo. I added the tumbling comet above them, to show the song's line "Won't you run, come see St Judy's Comet roll across the sky and leave a spray of diamonds in its wake." I decided that the comet here is Carson's wife and his son's mother, Jo.

Class Title: Lucky Drawing 108.

Class cost: in the US: $160 for four weeks, if paid with PayPal. OR $155 for four weeks, if paid by personal check. In other countries: $165 for four weeks, paid with PayPal. (Returning Lucky Drawing students who choose the Audit option pay half price, but cannot submit drawings to the class.)

A little background: I began teaching focused drawing classes when I was a graduate student at Kent State School of Art, teaching two undergrad drawing classes per semester in the early 1980s. I’ve taught drawing, painting, writing, and sewing in my art quilt workshops since 1989, around the world, and in my Turtle Art Camp weeklong, live-in students sessions at my home since 1994. (Check my Turtle Art Camp description, where you'll find lots of camp sessions to pick from!) But I'd never taught an online class until January, 2015. I found out I love doing it!

This online class is about drawing, and will NOT be about working on cloth at all. I may offer that online later, but for now, I’m focusing on what most artists I know need to improve on: their drawing skills, so basic to being able to have true freedom in artmaking! We'll be drawing in large hardbound sketchbooks and uploading pix of our drawings to the our personal albums. So you have to have enough computer skill to be able to take your photos and get them into our classroom on Facebook. My classes include very interactive discussions about everyone's drawings, so it feels like we're really in a live-time classroom, talking together, supporting each other's ideas and artworks. But each student really comes to the class group whenever they have time, any time it works in your own busy schedule.

Olga's sifter

Above: This is me on April 26, 2015, drawing on a piece about my old next door neighbor Olga's flour sifter, which her family gave to me, after she died at almost 105 years. In this piece I began with a Rub a Dub laundry marker, then added color with children's water based markers, and am adding detail with a gel pen. In my online drawing class, we work in this size hardbound sketchbook, and we draw a lot from life, but also can throw in drawing from memory or imagination, when we like. For this piece, besides drawing things in front of me, I was looking at images of Milkweed plants online and drawing them all through the composition. I'm getting ready to buy Milkweed seeds to get started here, to help bring the Monarch butterflies back from the edge of extinction.

I have always considered myself a painter, much more than a quilter, as all my formal art studies were in drawing and painting. I came to quilting out of a feminist choice in college, to embrace the sewing my mother had taught me, and which had been such a big part of my life as a girl and a woman. I wanted to make Women's Art. This made me consciously decide to add sewing to my drawing and painting, and later that kind of work became known as art quilting. But we aren't studying that here.

Class description: This class will be all about drawing A LOT in an 11 x 14" or smaller hardbound sketchbook (using pens, markers, colored pencils, watercolors - whatever works well for you and is visually strong on paper.) We'll each be doing optional and simple daily drawing exercises and working on weekly assignments. We’ll be drawing from life and/or from photos, and from memory and imagination, so we can play with the drawings and make them more passionate and poetic than just realistic renderings, in order to show our feelings in and for the work. It's fine to use photos as references, especially our own photos, but all drawing for the class must be done freehand. No tracing, collage, or digital drawing, please.

I don't give step-by-step drawing instructions. I give theme ideas and then we all draw in our own ways and post our works for comments. I often use my class video making to show how I use materials and create my own drawings for the class themes. While doing this, I often talk about how and why I do what I do with drawing tools, but don't expect me to tell you how to draw. I want you to open up like a little child and draw in your own natural way, which I promise will be wonderful! And the more you do it, the more you'll be able to draw like you want to.

Use any art supplies you want to, as long as you're drawing freehand, and we are able to SEE your compositions well in your photos. Let curiosity be your guide for learning to use various materials, and grab them and use them like a little kid does. In fact, the more you can think and work in a childlike state of innocence, the better! Art rules are pretty useless in reality! And judging your drawings will wear you out. Focus on the joy of drawing, not the hard work of it!

I’ll be making posts daily to the Facebook group, and will do this in a combination of ways: some little home videos for you to watch, photos of my own drawings, and posts about other things that interest me. The other students and I will give feedback to you about your work that you post to the group, and the whole class group will participate in our discussions of our drawings and whatever else we want to talk about. My students tell me that I partipate much more than the usual online teacher does. I wouldn't know, since I haven't taken an online class, just invented my own. Everyone's comments to others about their drawings must be supportive, never discouraging.

Besides giving you weekly assignments, I’ll give Special Events themes once in a while. And you can do daily drawing of your choice. All drawings and all deadlines are your choice to do, to bend around in another direction, or to not do. Students can upload their assignments and other drawings, and can give positive feedback to each other. We’ll all share, and get to know each other, so everyone can feel comfortable together, in our own little art tribe. If you don't have time to do drawings at times, it's ok. Everyone works at their own pace in my classes.

You need to have a digital camera or smartphone, in order to take digital pix of your artworks and upload them to your album in the classroom. I will give you needed personal help in learning how the FB private group albums work, whether you're working from a computer or a device. But you need to have the device or computer to work with, to get your drawings on paper turned into digital images for the class to see.

A really nice thing about taking an online class is that you can "attend class" whenever it suits your own personal schedule. There is no exact time when you must be present. I hope this will help you fit the class into your own busy schedule. And if you get behind in the assignments, because Life gets in the way, you'll be able to access the group for a long, long time after the class is done. All the deadlines for assignments are what I call "porous." You can be late or early, or never do any given assignnent, and you're still ok. You don't have to do any drawings you don't want to do.

Learning to draw takes dedication and a hunger to improve, just like learning to play piano or other instruments does. This class is for those who ache to be able to draw well and are willing to work at it a lot, starting wherever their skill level is right now and being unafraid to let others know that they can’t draw perfectly now, but want to become able to draw as realistically as they would like. It can take years to get to “perfect” realism, not just a few weeks, but every improvement in skill toward that goal is amazing! And along the way, you can savor the leaps in your drawing ability, as you enjoy being able to really express yourself with what you create on paper. Continuing with more 4 week sessions of Lucky Drawing is what I hope you'll consider doing, so that you can continue to stay motivated to draw and improve your skills. I am certainly always striving to improve my drawing skills. We all need some structure, in order for us to make the time to draw, too!

I believe that some of us are born with more ability than others in artmaking, but that everyone can improve their skills, as long as they’re enthused and hardworking … and hardplaying! The amount of your drawing improvement will hinge on your thirst to make it happen. I promise that practice and passion make perfect ... eventually. And we'll have a lot of fun along the way! I hope you'll lie in bed, thinking about the drawing you're working on, and get up in the morning, with excitement about drawing on your mind. Well, at least sometimes!

I don’t judge my students’ work, but rather encourage them to keep learning how to really look at things and how to see the stunning variety of nuance in the world around us. Each time you look at something, it will look different, and you will learn to really see the shapes before you, and not draw what you think they look like, but rather, what they really do look like, in that place, from that angle, at that time. The world is so fascinating in its infinitely changing forms!

GEM and Jimmy

Above: "You Are My Flower." I made this drawing on May 29 and 30, 2015, drawing freeehand, looking at a photo I had taken of my family in June, 2012. from left are my daughter Gretchen, my son-in-law Michael, my granddaughter Eva, and my husband Jimmy. I sketched with a light colored pencil, then added more colored pencil, Inktense blocks brushed on with water, more colored pencil, and black permanent gel pen. You will notice that this and all of my drawings here are done in a hardbound sketchbook, which is what we draw in for my online drawing classes. I prefer the largest hardbound size, 11"h x 14"w, so the double page spread drawings are 14"h x 22"w.

Remember: visual art is about communicating visually to others. Think about what you want people to notice, to feel, and to understand in what you’ve created and are sharing with them. Also please take to heart that there is no right and wrong in art. Creativity has no rules, thank goodness!

So I ask you to come to this class, if you’re ready to really fall in love deeply with expressing yourself through studying drawing, which is the visual-form equivalent to studying piano, with the same requirement of discipline and dedication. Drawing with its art basics is to making art what basic piano with its music basics is to making music. It's all about practice and learning to see!

You can continue taking my 4-week classes, since they will not be repeats of earlier sessions. You can work with me as long as you want to, to keep your enthusiasm and inspiration up for doing your drawing on a regular basis. I'll keep thinking up new class assignments and making more videos, so you'll never feel like the class is getting old. I promise to keep you challenged!

If you are hungry to improve your art skills, to the point where you are able to feel unlimited in what you choose to make art about, or you need a group structure to make yourself find drawing time, or you want to be part of a very active, feisty group of artists making drawings together from all over the country and even farther away, then sign up. This class won't have step-by-step art-rules instruction. It will have passion and encouragement!

How to pay for this class: If you live in the US, the class fee is $160, if you pay with PayPal, and $155 if you mail me a personal check instead. If you live in another country, please use PayPal and send me $165, which will cover the currency exchange fee PP charges me.

However you’re paying, please email me at, to let me know that you are sending payment, so I can put your name on my class list. I will also need your phone number and address.

For PayPal payment, go to your PayPal account and send your fee to my email address, The name on the account is my husband, James Acord. When I receive your payment notice from PayPal, I will email you and let you know that you’re enrolled in the class. If you've never used PayPal before and want to, email me, and I'll send you instructions on how to use PayPal.

For personal check payment, email me and then send $155 to Susan Shie, 2612 Armstrong Drive, Wooster, Ohio 44691. When I receive your check in the mail, I will email you and let you know that you’re enrolled in the class.

Lucky Drawing 108 is the next session of 4 weeks, starting November 24 and going through December 21, 2015. Students from earlier sessions can sign up to continue, and new students can jump in, as the lessons will always work fine for both beginners and ongoing students at all levels. I'll be thinking up new weekly assignments all the time, without repeating them. You can sign up for this next class any time now. Email me at:, to sign up. Just tell me that you want to sign up, and tell me how you're paying. I'll write you back, and also let you know when I've got your fee. I'll open the new Lucky Drawing 108 classroom on Facebook two days before the class starts, and invite you to join that secret private classroom and create your own photo album there. Thanks a lot. Call me at 330-317-2167, if you have questions.

Supplies for this class, Lucky Drawing 106:

You must be on Facebook, and send me a friend request, if we're not connected there already, so I can invite you into the classroom.

You can start this class with just the hardbound sketchbook and a few ballpoint pens, if that's all you have around. You can use anything you like for drawing supplies, except you'll see I hate it when you use regular, too light, pencils. Who can see those weak marks in a photo online?? If you are not in the USA, buy your supplies in your own country, but just try to find the biggest size hardbound sketchbook.

The hardbound sketchbook: This is the one supply you must buy for this class. You can buy other brands, but make sure the paper is of good quality. I suggest the 14”h x 11”w hardbound sketchbook by Pro-Art. 220 pages, 110 sheets, acid free, 65 pound paper. Buy anywhere you find it, but Dick Blick has it. retail $16.99. Blick price $11.81, plus shipping. Amazon has it for $12.62, with free Amazon Prime shipping, if you have Prime. If you don't buy this brand, your sketchbook still has to be hardbound, so it doesn’t have holes where the pages meet, but rather a nice bound-book center line between the open book’s facing pages. No spiral bindings or glued-only binding books, as glued pages fall out. Hardbound books last! And we’ll be drawing across a double page spread most of the time. I prefer the 11 x 14" size , because you can get so much more detail into larger drawings. Some students will use it and some will work smaller, but I honestly think that drawing smaller is actually harder!

Suggestions for other supplies you might want to try:

I suggest finding the supplies at places you want to shop at. Shop local or online. Amazon has everything, but you can also try Dick Blick, Jerry's Artarama, and other places. Some of us have local stores we can support for at least some of this stuff!

Here are some art supplies I use. You should use what you want. Don't buy a bunch of stuff. Just get into this gently!

Bic ballpoint pens, medium tip. I love cheap blue and black pens for drawing! They're great for drawing on the run when you don't have any "art supplies" on you! Use any paper you can find, when you're out and about and need to draw. Ballpoint pens are great for shading your drawing, and I use them intentionally in my work, a lot! You can use other colors of ballpoint pens, too.

Rub-a-Dub laundry markers by Sharpie. No kidding. I use them all the time! They look great on paper, but are a fairly thick line. Same line as a regular Sharpie, but these don’t do the dreaded haloing of rust colored crud onto the drawing surface, a while after you made the art. Not sold in too many places, but look around online! Rub-a-Dubs are at Staples, Amazon, and most office supply stores, especially online.

Rub-a-Dubs will bleed through to the other side of your paper a little, but not as much as regular Sharpies and other permanent markers will. I am used to a little bleeding in my sketchbooks, and I don’t mind it. But if you DO mind it, then don’t use any permanent markers. Stick to water based markers, like the Pentel Color markers or even markers designed for children. In the sketchbook, you don’t have to worry about light fading your work, because the book will be closed most of the time. (This will protect your watercolor drawings, too, which will also flatten out, after you let them dry well and then close the book, especially when you put heavy weights on the closed book.) Pentel Color Pens will not bleed through, BUT if you use watercolor or other water treatments on a drawing on the other side of the page from the Pentels, then the Pentels WILL bleed through to your watercolored drawing! So be careful with markers of all kinds, really!

Uni-ball Signo Impact 207 1.0mm point black gel pens. Best roller gel pen I've found for paper, at a lower price than the Pentel rollers for fabric, lised below, which I also love. These Uni-ball pens don't say they're waterproof, but that they're water-resistant. They have refills, which is amazing to find with a pen anymore! Very buttery gliding tip, very rich ink like the richness of the ink in the Pentels below here. The link above is for a set of 3 pens with 8 refills, because gel pens go down fast. But you can find them sold separately or in other package deals, too.

Pentel Black Roller black gel pens for Fabric. I'm not as hot on these as I was, and it's mainly because they use up the ink too fast and don't have refills. I prefer the Uniball gel pens above. These Pentels are not meant for use on paper, but they really ARE great for on paper, because they have permanent, waterproof, acid free pigment ink, and they glide easily and have a very rich black line, about 1.0 mm thick. Their line resembles the lines I get with my airpen and fabric paint, for writing on my fabric pieces. Many regular gel pens' lines bleed when you get them wet, but these Pentel gel rollers don't do that. And they don't bleed through the paper to show on the next page. And this item is just a suggestion, like everything here but the sketchbook, which you need in that size and hard bound. These gel pens, and the ones above them don't bleed through your paper and are useable with watercolors, unlike most other gel pens. They do use way too much ink though. Go down super fast.

Pitt Artist’s Pens by Faber-Castell. I'm getting away from these, too, in favor of Uniball Signo gel pens 2 paragraphs above. These use india ink, are super rich, but keep the caps on tight when not in use, or they dry out and are ruined. Their lines are thinner than the gel pen lines, but some people like thin lines, and sometimes you really need them. They make 2 or 3 sizes of tips, blus brush tip pens, too.

drawing ©Susan Shie 2014.

Above: "Art and Peace." ©Susan Shie 2014. Drawing on the back of a big envelope, using a black, medium point Bic pen,

Colored pencils: best are Prismacolor Premier colored pencils, because they’re soft and rich in color, the very best colored pencils with the very most wonderful colors! Make sure you're getting the Premiers, because Prismacolor also makes cheaper, but harder (therefore lighter and less rich) colored pencils. You can buy Prismacolor Premier Colored Pencils many sizes of sets, and even individually, to replace your favorite ones. They also make Prismacolor Art Stix, which are sticks of just the "leads" of the colored pencils. These are very waxy, so they don't smear or give off dust, like oil pastels and regular pastels do. They cost more than regular colored pencils, but they last a lot longer. Do not sharpen them, but rather, hold them at an angle, while you use them, so that the tips naturally have a point, if you want one. You can maintain a flatter edge on one end and a pointer edge on the other end. Clever!

Pentel Color Pens. I am using these less now, in favor of Crayloa children's markers, because the Pentels bleed through the page, if you watercolor on the other side of the paper. These Pentels are fine line, really nice colors. But these will bleed through, if and when you put watercolor or other water treatments on a drawing on the back of the paper you used the Pentels on! They will then bleed through and ruin the drawing you're working on with the watercolors! If you get Pentels, I suggest Dick Blick, because they have the best price on these for now, but buy anywhere. If you buy them on Amazon, be careful, because they have a bunch of different prices that vary a LOT. If you see that the markers are indeed Pentels, and the price is nearly as good as Dick Blick's, but you have Amazon Prime, then you decide! But don't buy these markers at crazy high prices!

Prang or other watercolor sets, with the cakes of color, not the dreaded, always stuck-lid tubes! I recommend the Prang 16-color set, the ones marked Professional, as there's also a lower quality set by Prang for kids, too. Prang is my favorite watercolor, and many artists agree that, even though we used them as kids in school, they make the best watercolors, with highly saturated, smooth colors. Also, with Prang, you can find replacement color cakes online. I go through yellow really fast. If you don't want Prang, play around with other sets of pan-watercolors. Prangs are semi-moist, very bright and high-pigmented!

Some nice watercolor brushes. Blick, Jerry’s Artarama, etc, lots of places sell them, but you might want to feel the bristles yourself, in person, and buy locally. The brushes that come with watercolors are usually not very good brushes, so buy some good ones and take good care of them. I love to use flat brushes, not round ones, but I'm on the lookout for the wonderful round Chinese horse hair brushes with bamboo handles. They used to have Chinese writing on the handles, but now they're less interestingly marked in English. They're for painting with Sumi ink, but I used to use them a LOT for watercolor. They're rounded brushes, but have a tiny tip, so they make great thick or thin lines and hold a lot of paint. If they're bent or misshapen when you see them, don't buy them. Buy ones with well-shaped tips. Be very careful with all your brushes, to make sure you form them back into their original brush shape, using your fingers, after you gently wash them. And never leave them sitting in water. Store them brush-end up or lying flat.

Water soluble colored pencils and color sticks that you can draw with and then use water and brush over are very nice, too. Derwent, Caran d'Arche, Koh-i-Noor, and other brands make these. I am currently doing a lot of coloring with Derwent Inktense blocks (sticks of concentrated colored inks) and using a wet brush to stroke the stick and then apply the color to the drawing. Lately I have moved away from these, in favor of watercolors again, but it's up to each of us to choose what we like best.

Good metal, hand-held pencil sharpener, and replacement blades.

Kneaded eraser, though I really hate erasers.

I discourage students from using regular pencils and erasers, because these imply and beg revision. I prefer letting it rip and just drawing, so the pens, markers, watercolors, colored pencils, etc, make me happy, as you get used to always moving forward, not fussing with “mistakes.” Children don’t erase, until they get into school and hear about doing it right or wrong … And back to my bad attitude about regular pencils: lightly drawn pencil sketches are very hard to SEE. Let’s stick with things that make good, strong marks, so we can all see what each other has created!

You don't need to buy a lot of stuff right away, and you may only wish to use a few tools for your drawing, anyhow. So just have a few things you think you'll love using ... and that fancy sketchbook I wrote about, at the start. That's the one thing I really, really want us all to be using the same. If you can't get that particular one, find another brand of 14 x 11" or smaller hardbound sketchboook.

I hope to hear from you soon! Thanks so much, Lucky (Susan Shie) Please contact me for more information or to sign up for Lucky Drawing 108 or a later class.


Drawing of bed 11-14. ©Susan Shie 2014

Above: This is the drawing I made in my 11 x 14" sketchbook, of the scene below. I drew from life, not from the photo, but the photo shows you what I started with ... before the light changed over the next two work hours and the pets shifted and moved a lot. This drawing was made with black marker and colored pencil. For the assignment, students can choose what media to use in response to my assignments.

Photo of bed 11-14. ©Susan Shie 2014

Above: This is a photo I took of my unmade bed, in prep for making a two hour study of this setting. I knew the dog and cat would move in that time, so I wanted to have the photo as a fail-safe, but I ended up drawing from life for the whole session. It was an assignment I made called "Unmade Bed Drawing."

Shie portrait 2013. ©Susan Shie 2013

Above: Susan Shie with one of her large soft paintings (art quilts), made about Monica Bongue's sustainable organic farm, near Wooster. "Muddy Fork Farm." ©Susan Shie 2013. 72"h x 72"w. Airbrush, airpen, whole cloth painting, mostly machine sewn.

Susan Shie personal background: I'm a lifetime artist, born in Wooster, Ohio, on September 28, 1950. I'm a Libra, and a White Metal Tiger. I’ve lived in Wooster most of my life, with my leather-artist husband James (Jimmy) Acord since 1976. Our daughter Gretchen, her husband Mike, and our granddaughter Eva live in Lakewood, Ohio. We have a dog, Libby, and two cats: Otis and Ome, and their sister Cricket lives with GEM, our kids in Lakewood.

I have two college degrees: The College of Wooster, BA in Studio Art (painting) 1981, summa cum laude, honors, Phi Beta Kappa. Kent State University School of Art, MFA (Master of Fine Arts in Painting 1986, summa cum laude. I taught Drawing I and Drawing II at Kent State School of Art, to undergrads during my master’s program.

My awards include two NEA Individual Artist grants, a Major Artist Grant from the combined NEA and OAC (Ohio Arts Council), and several Individual Artist grants from the OAC, as well as the 2008 Teacher of the Year Award from Professional Quilter. My artist's residencies include six months at PS#1 in New York City and a month in Xi'an, China, both thanks to the Ohio Arts Council.

This year's Quilt National '15 is my 13th time to have work in this seminal biennial exhibiton that tours for two and a half years. I have exhibited, been published, and have taught art in adult workshops around the US and abroad since 1987, when I went from being a student to a professional artist. I've offered monthly weeklong Turtle Art Camps for adult students at my home studio from 1994 to present. I also offer private drawing and painting lessons in my home on a weekly basis, to children, teens, and adults. I'm very glad that I added teaching drawing online to my teaching formats in January, 2015.

See more detailed biographical information, including resume, bibliography, teaching history, and artist’s statement, in my resume index page.

For more information, please visit my website Turtle Moon Studios, or email me at

Drawing ©Susan Shie 2014.

Above: "The Busy Bee Egg Beater Company, Chicago, IL." ©Susan Shie 2014. ink, markers, and colored pencil on paper in 14" x 11" sketchbook, 2-26-14. This started out as an exercise with students, drawing from real egg beaters. Then we used mirrors and added ourselves in the negative spaces formed between the egg beater studies. The assignment is called "Kitchen Tools Drawing."

Susan Shie Turtle Moon Studios, Wooster, Ohio

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Copyright 1997 Susan Shie and Jan Cabral

Web site created by Susan Shie and Jan Cabral ©1997. All subsequent website work done by Susan Shie ©1997 - 2015.

This page updated by Susan Shie, November 17, 2015.

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