Charcoal Is My Superpower

I have a theory about drawing and art. When we are children we just pick up a pencil or crayon and draw. We can, when prompted, explain our picture in full, glorious detail.

Then there comes a point in life where we become critical of our own work - whether that be through self-analysis, comparison or negative feedback - and some of us just stop drawing because we believe we aren't as good as our peers.

I am one of those people.

I have friends who arty types and their talent never ceases to amaze me. They use different mediums and have totally different styles however the finished article is always stunning.

Recently, through work (I am loving my new line of work!), I was invited to attend a life-drawing class. I was going to sit at the back and observe but I had a spare blank notebook and HB pencil at home so shoved them in my bag just in case.  The class was advertised as an alternative life-drawing class with entertainment, competitions and 'quick draw' sessions. It was during these 'quick draw' sessions that I thought I'd join in, especially after I heard some of the attending artists say that they couldn't achieve much in the allotted time. 

The result was a bit pathetic but then what can you achieve in 30 seconds, or without taking your pencil off the paper, or without looking at the paper at all.  And that was the clincher... it was all about becoming comfortable drawing the subject with your weapon of choice rather than perfecting a piece of work.

drink and draw, blackburn is open, rockit dance, charcoal, pencil
Then my friend Bev (who is a superb sculptor) gave me a bit of a nudge and told me to use some of her charcoal.  It was a revelation! Charcoal gave me confidence and whilst it hasn't made me any better it did give a bit more life (no pun intended) to my sketches.

Do you sketch or draw or sculpt or are you artistic in any way?  Let me know in the comments.  

PS. Bev, I will visit your studio one day but it was great to see you on Thursday. Lizzie, you owe me a picture, remember? Inspire me!

PPS. The models were from the RockIt Dance group in Manchester. Aren't they fabulous?

PPPS.  No, you're not getting to see the results of the 30-second challenges mentioned above but here's some other stuff that I drew... (pic above, pics below)

drink and draw, blackburn is open, rockit dance, charcoal, pencil