The Drop by Drawing class on Sundays at the National Gallery of Victoria concluded. I miss it already. Last Sunday wasn’t the same. For one, there was foster kittens, but mainly, I missed arting about.
However, I can safely say my month of Sundays was a revelation. It’s provided an official sanction, or permission for two hours of an afternoon for all the participants to try something. This included lying on the floor of the 19th century gallery and sketching with eyes closed, or drawing a live model without lifting the pencil from the paper (see above). Some of the exercises are meant to open up our ‘seeing’ in much the same way as Drawing on the Left Side of the Brain does.
The other participants have been mostly pretty friendly and engaging, especially for the occasional ‘group’ task, like drawing a stranger while hopping or some such. It’s just as well we were in it together; as a group we looked ridiculous, but that’s much better than any individual standing out ridiculously:)
Some participants have clearly been professionals, honing their skills, others are giving it a go, or somewhere in between. But it’s weird how often humans need permission to go ahead and try something. Maybe this has been hard-wired in school and then work.
But there is something else as well. Much of the world considers if you aren’t doing something that either makes money or is ‘for’ some purpose, it is wasted time. Obviously, I don’t agree. Perhaps, if more people took the time to do the things (within their means?) they want to do, maybe we’d be happier? Sadly, to some, this is too a radical suggestion. Being selfish is bad, apparently, but we are all selfish, to a degree. If we weren’t, we’d barely survive beyond baby-hood. So, I’ve happily been selfish on these Sundays, pursuing something for whatever slight joy or satisfaction maybe had from it, because I could. More people should.
It’s also good to get beyond striving for ‘accurate’ and ‘good’. Whatever pressure there is on me, is from me, I’ve learned that in writing, and now in this. And stuff pressure, by the way. There is no timetable. Thus, I realise I can look back at some of my work and see the freedom I had and perhaps felt, in expressing myself. I’d like to get that back.
In case you are worried about my writing: it continues apace. My first short story of 2017 has been accepted. Further details will be posted in the coming weeks about where this will be available and what I learned when writing it. Suffice it to say, I’m a bit chuffed about this one. It kinda balances out not winning a (biggish) competition recently.
That’s me, I guess, writing on and drawing some conclusions.