Sunday, October 27, 2013

Drawing...for busy people

I've just come back from a family weekend at the beach and I noticed something.

When I go away, I sketch more. But why?

With two kids aged 2 and 4, holidays are often more work than staying at home. A joy, yes, but work nonetheless.

However, when away from home I also don't have those everyday household tasks hanging over me. And everything is new and exotic. I notice things more because I'm outside of my own environment.

The quickest sketch I completed was the one below - it took about 5 minutes. But starting the sketch in the first place was a mistake.


We tried to have coffee in a gorgeous, vintage-themed cafe with mismatched crockery and nanna-rugs thrown over couches.

JJ immediately spilled her babycino, then started grabbing at the sugar bowl, mistaking its contents for sand (we were at the beach after all). Miss P then promptly spilled hot chocolate down her top. No one could sit still. It was like taking two bulls into a china shop.

But I did a sketch! It was hurried. But I did it.

Which makes me think: how can I try and maintain a daily sketch habit in everyday life?

Here's what I came up with:

1. Move it to the top of the 'to do' list. I've used this trick before. Instead of rewarding myself with sketching time after completing a long list of boring tasks (and never getting to the sketch anyway), I priotise it and immediately feel a sense of accomplishment as I go about my day. Sometimes you simply can't put it first, but it can still go somewhere near the top.

2. Don't make it a big deal. It's not necessary to have a huge chunk of time or special materials or be in a particular place. Whenever there's a moment, with whatever drawing implement is available, make the sketch of what's in front of you. Done is better than perfect, as they say.

3. Sketch something you enjoy drawing. My fallback subject matter is chairs (don't ask, I don't know why!) and table arrangements in cafes. There are more detailed, complex and challenging things I love to draw, but I can tackle those when I have more time.

So that's what I came up with.

This post could also be entitled 'Note to Self' because I, more than anyone, need to heed this advice!

Let's see how I go this week. Do you have any other tips for daily drawing?