Saturday, 30 April 2011

Taking a Line for a Walk

Yes, I know we have had a royal wedding, and pretty impressive it was too!
In fact it was hubby who switched on and got into it first,
(but then he is an old romantic);
but it did have a profound simplicity at the heart of the pomp and ceremony
which was captivating.

At the moment,
I am even more than usually resenting anything that impinges
on my creative time though,
and the royal wedding did make a hole in my day!

I've treated myself to Diana Trout's Inner Circle Class
learning to make journal/sketch books on-line,
and it has given my creative energy an instant rejuvenation.This is the first of the papers I painted as a back ground for the journal pages,
and as you can see it was an exercise in just letting go.
So I sloshed, stamped, printed and drew to my heart's content.
After my blitz on the paper was over these two details from the sheets,
above and below, are what intrigued me.
You see, back in the dark ages
when I was taught to form my letters for the first time at four years of age,
it was the practice in schools to make pupils draw certain shapes
over and over again.
We little folk made pages and pages of these marks,
which preceded our first letters and which, I suppose,
were to increase our dexterity with a pen.
Oh yes, we used dip pens, and ink made from powder,
which meant it always formed clumps in the nib, and caused blots and blotches.
I really DO go back a long way!

All these years later I can remember the sheer pleasure it gave me to see the growing patterns,
their interaction with one another,
and what I now know as the negative shapes,
which pleased me as much as the marks.

The echoes of these seminal lines that I see in the painted paper makes me realise how early my love of the line began,
and what a close kinship there is between
fluid penmanship and draughtmanship.

Klee's delightful description of drawing as
"taking a line for a walk,"
resonates deeply.

The lessons looked something like these lines on the left.

Seeing them anew make me wonder if children these days
aren't missing out.

I will try them out with my great grand son,
who at three loves nothing more than to copy and draw
along with me.

Next time I may post some of my pen and ink drawings, and also some of the abstract work where I have still found the line irresistible.

God Bless

P.S Is there anybody out there who remembers the same sort of pre-writing exercises?

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