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Jieru Lin
I’m Nature

40″ x 30″


Clara Lieu, RISD Adjunct Professor

Clara Lieu

Art Prof & Partner

Casey Roonan, Comics Artist & Cartoonist

Casey Roonan

Cartoonist & Comics Artist

Deepti Menon, Filmmaker & Animator

Deepti Menon

Filmmaker & Animator

Artist Statement
“This is a drawing I made for my drawing course as a mid-term assignment. The assignment is to think about my relationship with nature. For me, I think human beings are part of nature and should be closer to nature as we are now.

I come from a big city so I don’t have a lot of chance to be around nature. In this drawing, I represent myself as part of nature and I’m trapped by city. I also imply global warming and tell people that if we still separate ourselves against nature, our world can be in danger.”

3 responses on "Group Art Critique: Jieru Lin"

  1. There are so many gorgeous lights and darks in this piece that all play off each other so delicately. I sense that you’re pretty comfortable with charcoal and know which kinds of markmaking you’re looking for. I love the way you’re visually enmeshed within this landscape between the arbor and urban. I definitely get that sense of being tugged at by both, and being unsettled about where you belong. The buildings around you look somewhere in between protective and suffocating, but the tree holds the same kind of double edged comfort. The scene reminds me a little bit of the show Attack on Titan, because of the gargantuan, havoc wreaking forces at play.

    I wonder why there is a lack of depth in the face. It looks almost as if you were afraid to touch it. It fades into the same level of detail and tonal range as the buildings in the background. This could make for an interesting conceptual nudge if you wanted to go that direction. I feel troubled by the hole in the chest. From far away it seems like a gory hole of the heartless or soulless, but at a closer view, I notice the edges of leaves, and I feel more as if I’m gazing through a window. It feels peaceful. I think it’s worth exploring these kinds of contrasts in your work between tranquility and violence, chaos and balance. You have a wonderful sense of rhythm and composition that would highlight these foils well!

  2. This is a really ambitious piece! You have so many elements in this and it’s quite impressive. From the figure (which is already difficult to draw), to the nature/tree, and to the architectural aspects of the city. I love how bold you are with this.

    The leaves of the tree are very successful. There’s a certain textural quality that makes this really believable. I especially appreciate how you have the light shining through them.

    One thing I will say (and it was mentioned in the crit trio) is that there is a lot going on in this piece and I’m not exactly sure what the focal point is. Is it the tree, the face, etc.? By considering your strongest value points (dark to light) and your overall compositional shapes you can practically instruct the viewer where to go without even needing to tell the viewer. Simply put, you want to make sure you force us to look where you want us to look. It would also be really great to play up some of the nature mixing with the figure a bit more. Maybe the tree roots are wrapping around her entire body instead of just a few places on the legs/arms.

    Great work, and I love the ambition! Can’t wait to see what you produce next!

  3. For me, the most successful elements in this drawing are where you get a beautiful delicate touch! The face, the shadows on the leaves on the figures shoulder – it shows a great control as an artist to not overwork these areas. Some realms in contrast are a little over or underworked – we can almost see the areas that you cared the most about because they show great care and sensibility, but areas like the hand seem forgotten and need to be brought up to the level that the rest of the piece has reached.
    Conceptually I think you’re really at an interesting idea – the person growing too big, but then nature growing too big right back. I love how you’re softly showing the roots passing through the human, but some parts like the forested hole in the torso are a little too obvious I think. With both concept and technique, we can see a lot that you’re doing well in this piece, but there are those few points that need to meet up with the rest. For concept, don’t try to put too many visual messages in one image – find a way to keep it simple but show it strongly!

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