In the middle of the night I was rummaging every corner of my cabinet, seeking for materials to secretly draw another birthday card for my mom. I did this for her yearly, and she had always been happy.
Pencil, eraser, colored papers, crayons, markers, a portrait – all materials were ready.
It must have been hiding behind the colored papers layer all the time. And a flow of memory took me back to my first drawing class nine years ago.
Miss Huong, my teacher, cheerfully welcomed me when I arrived. Having settled in my seat, I glanced at a big blackboard, saw the prompt “Draw anyone”, and smirked because I had been drawing hundreds of portraits of characters from Japanese comics, and selling them to my friends for some extra money.
I confidently grabbed my pencil and started sketching.
“Hoang, put away your pencil and eraser. Those things are not allowed in my class,” – suddenly said Miss Huong.
“But how can I fix the errors I may make then?”
“You can grab a new paper and start another one.”
Because I always sketched with pencil, erased unnecessary parts and colored carefully, I just sat still, did not know how to begin. Noticing my perplexity, Miss Huong came to my seat, took an Iris color and drew some basic lines unhesitatingly. Straight lines actually. The whole face, the nose, the lips, the body, the hands were all in straight lines. The only curves were the oval-shaped eyes. Those basic lines were somewhat too rigid, yet so intriguing that I could not stop watching.
Then she told me to start coloring normally. When I grabbed Cream for the skin, she chose Raspberry for slight blush on the cheek. While I picked up Green for the shirt, she picked up Orange, started drawing some curves along the border of the shirt. When I chose Gold for the background, she grabbed Dark Grey. It was as if inspiration rushed to the...