Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Drawing a day - day 1

After the Life Class of Doom, and having some struggles with direction and frustration on the course, I thought what I really need is just to practice. A lot. And not worry about classes or formal learning, but just to draw, and keep drawing, until I get better.

Successful artists (and probably, successful people in every field) are real grafters. They work and work and work at it. They produce shitloads of work. We went to the Tate Britain 'house-warming' and had a wander through the Turner galleries. There are a lot of them. They represent hours and hours of looking. Drawing teaches you how to look.  It also teaches you visual memory, which I really need. 

Inspired by this, and by the printmaker Ann Lewis on Twitter, who posted a beautiful little sketch a day for 'Draw October,' sometimes of Welsh landscapes like the beach or the mountains, sometimes just a little mundane item like a bar of chocolate or a mug on the draining board, I'm going to try and produce a drawing a day. Hopefully it will become a habit.

I went to Paperchase at lunchtime and in my 15 minutes grabbed a coffee at  Cafe Nero, and sat down with my little pad and pen (no 3B pencils, so pen had to suffice.) I drew the woman sitting on the next table .  I wish  drawing wasn't such a suspicious activity in public places, I love drawing people but they get nervous when you stare at them. This took about 3 minutes.

Fortuitously she was on the phone and didn't notice my shifty glances over at her.


  1. UK is almost entirely an eyes-down culture now, including walking in the street. Quite nostalgic about Italian and French gawping - if it still goes on?

  2. Yes, and in fact an 'eyes on your mobile/ipad' culture.

    I don't know about Italy and France, it's so long since I went away. Though whenever I'm abroad I think people give me more eye contact because I'm looking around all the time with eyes like saucers.