Drawing – what’s that all about?

TSG plus visitors at our weekend workshop

TSG plus visitors at our weekend workshop

Last weekend I was in the beautiful Cotswolds for a workshop with the Textile Study Group. Led by two TSG members, Sian Martin and Penny Burnfield, we were challenged to reappraise our drawing habits. I have always enjoyed drawing but hold my hands up and acknowledge that over the last few years I have not spent as much time drawing as I once did. However after the weekend I am resolved to re-establish old habits and get drawing again. I do draw, but not the way I once did and I am keen to make it more of something I do every day, although that is maybe a tall order. I would like to be a ‘do a drawing a day’ girl and who knows it may happen. However I’m not going to beat myself up about it. I want to draw and enjoy it.

This first drawing was of a phlomis seed head but this one is of some of the lovely sunny coloured helenium I still have flowering in the garden. It was a deliberate decision not to spend very long drawing. I gave myself half an hour to put something down on paper and as the weeks pass I’ll post further attempts for you to see.

Our workshop made me think. Most of us agreed that the word ‘drawing’ is problematic. It can be difficult for people who think that all drawings have to look as if Michelangelo had lifted the pencil, but of course it couldn’t be further from the truth. As textile artists we can ‘draw’ in many ways that are meaningful for our practice and everyone will have their own way of putting marks on a surface. One question asked last weekend was ‘if a child trails a stick along a sandy beach and leaves a mark, is that a drawing?’ Well in a way it is but it is an unintentional drawing. Would you think that to be a drawing it has to be an intentional mark? I would be interested to hear what you think.

3 thoughts on “Drawing – what’s that all about?

  1. No, I don’t think drawing has to be intentional at all. Some of the most amazing and interesting drawings are made unintentionally. Thinking that all marks need to be intentional can be prohibitive when really drawing is just a response to something, usually 2D, so any process that makes a drawing in my eyes is legitimate. Tim Knowles ‘Weeping willow on circular panel (100 pen)’ is an amazing example of this………..happy drawing! http://www.pinterest.com/pin/246783254553746094/

  2. I have been drawing while on holiday I need to do lots more and regularly.
    I think drawing in the sand intentionally as a child is an enduring memory of contented playtime when I was left alone on the beach near the holiday house.

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