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D: Draw!

April 4, 2015

As a kid, I think I used to draw a fair bit. I remember winning a copy of Thumbelina in a drawing contest in class 1. I had drawn a house with a garden, I think. Growing up, the hobby was always there, but never explored seriously. After my class 10 or 12, I briefly considered studying Fine Arts at Chitrakala Parishat, but alas, someone talked me out of it and steered me to Engineering (sigh). And so, over the years I ended up buying a fair amount of art material whenever I visited stationery shops, but mostly they lay neglected. 

In September 2012, after a chance conversation with my friend LJ, I enrolled in a two-day watercolour painting workshop. That course was key in helping me get back to a childhood hobby. Oh that, and about six months later, one evening in Florence where we spent a couple of hours waiting for the sun to set at Piazza San Marco. I had just bought a lovely little pocket sketchbook and inaugurated it with this, that evening. The much-awaited sunset colouring the red tiled roofs over the city wasn’t as spectacular as the photographs promised, thanks to the clouds, but there I picked up and old hobby and re-discovered a love anew. 

  

(I’m told alcohol heightens the creative process. In this case it just caused wonky lines)

And so along, with this friend of mine, and the timely discovery of inspiration in the form of Penciljammers, UrbanSketchers, Danny Gregory’s Creative License, artists I follow on Instagram, the last three years have seen me pick up my sketchbook and pen a lot more often. And I try and make a short note beside the drawing as well, so it’s more of a journal as well. 

It’s great to have a hobby that doesn’t feel like a chore (hello Guitar practise, I’m looking at you!) and that rejuvenates me even if I spend 20 minutes on something quick and dirty at the end of a long day. My sketches are often hastily drawn, often not to scale, have skewed perspective at times and I almost always uses pen, so there’s no erasing and refining. But I love it. I don’t do it everyday, but I hope to keep at it and make it a habit. When I was sketching and painting very frequently sometime about 1.5 years back, I realised my observation skills had become a lot better. I love the focus it brings to me, and clears my head of everything else when I’m sketching. It’s probably what meditation would feel like, and exactly what running used to feel like. 

Reproducing here what Danny Gregory writes in one of his books,

A meditation 
Taking time each day to observe your surroundings, to be able to summarise your experiences and to be able to count your blessings will enrich your life. 
No matter how badly you think you draw, drawing and writing in your journal will relieve your stress, improve your sense of self-worth and give your days focus. 

Also, I’m hoping to sketch as many of little A’s worldly possessions as I can, apart from attempting to sketch her gestures from time to time.

  

So, a BFA did not materialise at Chitrakala Parishat. But I strongly hope that at some point in my life I will study art. And perhaps, revisit Florence, that birthplace of Renaissance with a sketchbook in hand as a student and fall in love with the city and art, all over again. 

Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps. 

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One comment

  1. Felt so many warm fuzziness when I saw the sketch of Amaya’s diaper bag. I’m sure she will too 😊



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