Taking a Line for a Dance

Taking a Line for a Dance

The new year is going well.

Over the Christmas break I had an art crit with my son-in-law Ruaidhri who repeated an observation he had made before, that he could sense a quality of movement in my mark making that originated in my dance background. I found this to be such helpful feedback. Paul Klee described drawing as ‘taking a line for a walk’ but I want to take a line for a dance. Thinking about that movement aspect inspires me to be experimental with different ways to approach my painting and it has reignited my love of drawing.

I’ve been looking back at creative inspiration in my life. I have always danced and it’s what I studied for my first degree. The local ballet teacher, whose classes I had been attending for twenty-two years, had to permanently close the dance school in the pandemic and I’ve not attended many dance classes since. Recognising the gap this left in my life I recently found and have been enjoying online classes with
Rambert+: https://rambert.org.uk/rambertplus/move/ . It’s something that’s been missing. I’m reconnecting with my creative foundations.

My other reconnection is with drawing. I learned to draw with Nick Bodimeade twenty years ago, when I was working as a garden designer. I loved it so much it initiated the change in my career to fine art.

I recently made a lot of drawings with charcoal. I liked the range of marks I could make, moving easily between a sharp point and the wide side of the stick, using a cloth to wipe the dust, to create another type of directional mark.

The process of buying new drawing tools for my family at Christmas prompted me to evaluate my own. Now I’ve stocked up with a good selection of pencils and graphite sticks with differing softness for tonal intensity. I’m finding the varied quality of marks I can make delightfully expressive and I’m having a great time.

If you’re interested in pencils check this out: https://ioannaladopoulou.design/faber-castell-pitt-graphite-matt-review-the-perfect-black-pencil/

I’m just setting up a new desk that is really a kitchen trolley with wheels. Anything that’s not on wheels has no place in the studio. I can keep monitors, computer, hard drive and other electronic devices on it and keep my big table free for art materials. Don’t worry about my legs, I haven’t forgotten about them, I can put my feet on my chair wheels.

Have a good week.


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