Just for the record, I don’t like this drawing at all, but I did draw yesterday and here is what I have to show for it.
But it did get me to thinking. I’ve set out this project for myself to draw daily, something I’ve been meaning to do for years. So now… what do I draw exactly? I love to draw from the figure and if I had a model I would do that every day. I don’t have a model, but I do have kids who occasionally sit still and lots of pictures of yoga poses. The problem with those is that at some point you have to ask permission of the person who is doing the pose. I have thought of 2 remedies for this. I could ask friends to either pose for me or send me pictures of themselves in yoga postures that they wouldn’t mind me drawing. I have on occasion photographed myself in poses, but that’s not always satisfactory.
So that’s part of it, at any rate. But I have to ask myself what I want to accomplish here. Why is daily drawing important to me? So important that I would carve precious minutes out of a day to work on it. Do I want to become expert at rendering all manner of materials? The folds of fabric? The lines and gradations of plant forms? The way light falls on, oh, anything at all? I’m not sure in the end it matters at all what you draw, but rather it is the constant training of hand/eye coordination, of making drawing so integral that it is absorbed deeply and becomes sort of an automatic tool, freeing to you focus on other concerns and not worry so much about rendering.
It’s terribly old-fashioned, in a way, this focus on drawing, and you don’t see much of it in contemporary art. I am moved by artists like Jim Dine who began their careers on an abstract/ conceptual route and later took up drawing as a crucial part of their artistic practice.
That doesn’t really answer the question that I set out for myself of what to draw. It may take a year to answer that question. So really I am setting sail on a year long exploration of drawing and what it means to me. I promise that some better drawings than the one above will follow, although I also intend to take risks so not everything will be pretty and nice.