Drawing a Pile of Chairs

Not just any pile of chairs

Drawing a pile of chairs; it doesn’t sound that interesting does it?  Well, I spent all day Friday trying to do just that.  The fun part was that the drawings didn’t actually have to look like the pile of chairs if we didn’t want it to, and the variety of responses from the various members of the class were fascinating, from the curvy and organic to the sharp lines and tilting planes of visual puzzles.

The one that took ages – but it looked better half an hour before I stopped

The point of the exercise was to look and decide which elements were your own focus.  For me, it was the legs…….I spent most of the day doing one drawing, and then, when I’d felt I’d spoilt it by adding too much, I spent the last half an hour or so scribbling through a couple of alternatives.  Turns out my class mates preferred the quicker, less careful, more slapdash ones.

I understand the point that perhaps something more interesting emerges when you work quickly without editing and without trying, consciously,  to make it good, but how do you then stop yourself from working over something too much and spoiling it?

Many of the same points are relevant in writing – it is often the words I write when I’m not thinking hard about it that bring surprising new ideas, or phrases that sing in the way they wouldn’t if I tried to hard to find them.  On the other hand, with writing, after that first splurge I have to go back to edit and refine and polish.  I’m sure the same is true of drawing, but I have no idea how to do that.

The ones I did to make myself look busy

Leave a comment


  1. i would love to be a fly on the wall while your group gets drawing.


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