I would love to be the sort of person who wanders around with a sketchbook and can imagine myself sitting in a sunlit courtyard, sipping my iced tea as I effortlessly sketch the charming scene before me. Alas, the reality is that my drawing skills are limited and I lack the dedication to practise and so improve. But during the summer holidays, when activities in The Barley Barn quieten down, Ruth has set a Slamseys Sketchbook Challenge, which I thought I’d join in.
The Slamseys Sketchbook Challenge is open to anyone who wants to be creative during August but perhaps needs a little motivation or inspiration. Throughout the summer there will be ideas and themes posted on the Slamseys blog and the challenge is to use them as a springboard for some creativity whether you’re a painter, printmaker, card maker, parent looking for some inspiration for your children over the summer holidays, potter, photographer …
I’ve eased myself in gently with the Start Sketching prompt. It would be unrealistic to set a target of sketching every day or sitting down to make a detailed study of something so I did a Quick Draw Exercise, which only takes about fifteen minutes. It involved making a series of 60 second sketches on a double page spread of my sketchbook using different techniques such as heavy and light lines, looking at the object but not the paper and vice-versa, drawing with your non-dominant hand, large scale, small scale, silhouettes and the like. Well within my concentration span. By the end, my pages were filled with drawings, many of them overlapping to make interesting shapes in themselves.
Ruth’s next challenge was to look at silhouettes. Rather fortuitously, I had a group of silhouettes from my Quick Draw session so I opened up a window envelope and placed it over them to frame the view and then traced the shapes to make an abstract pattern. Ruth took this exercise a lot further and did some rather wonderful screen printing so I feel I’ve taken the easy route by simply colouring in my silhouettes. But then, who knows what I might use them for in the future. (Certainly not me!)
If you want to join in, you can share your artwork using #SlamseysSketchbookChallenge