Sunday, 21 May 2017

Expressive Drawing - The Drawing Process

Expressive Drawing - Chapter 2 - Build 1
Charcoal, Graphite & Acrylic Paint on Paper
84.1cm x 59.4cm (33.1" x 23.4")

I’ve started to study and follow the exercises from Expressive Drawing by Steven Aimone.

Expressive Drawing - Chapter 2 - Play 1
Acrylic Paint on Paper
84.1cm x 59.4cm (33.1" x 23.4")

The subtitle of the book is A Practical Guide to Freeing the Artist Within. It contains a stimulating mixture of theory, exploring the works of other artists and practice.

Steven has an expansive definition of drawing. It includes far more than the representational drawing I have focused on so far. He defines drawing as “the arrangement of line and mark in space, designed to serve a variety of expressive purposes.”

Expressive Drawing - Chapter 2 - Play 1 - Right Handed
Acrylic Paint on Paper
84.1cm x 59.4cm (33.1" x 23.4")

Part 1 is about the Drawing Process and begins with Automatic Drawing – drawing with no plan, no purpose and, no conscious control. The instructions are simple:

  • Work on big paper with a decorator’s brush and either artist’s acrylic paint or house paint.
  • Hold the brush by the end of the handle in the palm of your hand
  • Load the brush with paint.
  • Approach the drawing surface as if you were a fencer with one of your feet forward and the other back.
  • Stand far enough away that you need to lean forward to reach the paper.
  • Without thinking or planning, make a line, a squiggle, a doodle - capture your first impulse.
  • Step back and look at the line or lines you just made.
  • As soon as any urge to respond occurs, do it - make another mark.
  • Repeat. Keep going. Looking and responding until nothing more occurs to you, or until you like what you see. Then stop - the drawing is finished.

After Automatic Drawing the next concept is Working in Flux. You start with some Automatic Drawing and then obliterate part of the drawing with white paint and then repeat.

Expressive Drawing - Chapter 2 - Play 1 - Small
Ink on Paper
14.0cm x 20.3cm (5.5" x 8.0")

There are 3 exercises:

  • Play 1 - Automatic Drawing with some variations
  • Play 2- Working with Flux Non-Objectively
  • Build 1 - Working with Flux Narratively

Narratively - involves including symbols and text.

The exercises have been a satisfying change. I’ve particularly enjoyed the spontaneous attitude and the broken lines created when a brush is running out of thick paint.

Expressive Drawing - Chapter 2 - Play 2
Charcoal, Graphite & Acrylic Paint on Paper
84.1cm x 59.4cm (33.1" x 23.4")

Build 1 (at the top of the post) was an interesting experience. As the layers built up the drawing changed from having an angry atmosphere to the relatively calm end result.

No comments:

Post a Comment