This week (with the help of the wonderful Justin Timothy Temple) I put up a drawing gallery on It’s A Beautiful Practice. Though I love drawing, I often struggle with whether or not I have talent. As a result, fear can stop me from beginning a work on paper. On the other hand, once I get going happiness abounds. So to keep happiness alive there is always a piece of paper hanging on the wall, ready to go. I also keep a pencil, pen, and straight edge around to fuel what has suddenly become my new habit, drawing.
To me, drawing invites a process of direct discovery that differs from painting. A line is so simple and direct. It seems to record the process of art making. This characteristic is unique to the medium. See my paintings/drawing of yoga poses from India
“Drawing….enjoys mythical status as the earliest and most immediate from of image making” Emma Dexter, Vitamin D New Perspectives in Drawing
Drawing is immediate, it captures time by recording every mark. A drawing gives space on the page to every line. It leaves a map illustrating the exploration of the individual piece. Read my post about making time to meditate.
“As your skills increase, you will see your unique style become firm and recognizable. Guard it, nurture it, and cherish it, for your style expresses you. As with the Zen master-archer, the target is yourself.” Betty Edwards, Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain
Drawing is mysterious. I use a grid format and a couple of perspective points to try and tame the infinite possibilities a drawing holds. I use these organizational methods to interrupt my thinking. The grid and spectra bump into my rational mind. Whether we are talking about yoga or drawing the practice is a mystery, read about the mystery of practice here.
“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.” Betty Edwards, Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain
If I am working on a painting often times I make a drawing. I draw the idea or the figure who will be central to the composition. I want to draw that person to get to know them better. Drawing with line and simplified color requires me to look in a different way. It requires me to boil down and simplify. See the first drawings i made here in California, simple and sweet.
I have often thought to myself that my drawing and painting should be the same but I have to admit, I have not found a way to create the same space in paint that I find in drawing and vice versa.
“The greatest satisfaction comes from mastering something that is truly difficult.” Betty Edwards, Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain
Elektra, one of my newest paintings is the closest thing to a drawing I have done with paint. In this work while painting the sky I draw electrical towers into the wet oil. I think the result feels a lot like my work on paper.
For now I’ll keep exploring both mediums and did I mention, I am absolutely thrilled to be so immersed in studio practice!
Thank you for taking the time to read this post. Feel free to send me an email letting me know what you think of the drawings and feel free to share your experiences with drawing and painting, yoga and life, cycling and running…whatever it is. See more drawings here.
If you make a drawing, send me a picture.