Saturday, April 2, 2011

Thoughts On Drawing

Canadian Artist, Alison Norlen is, I think addicted to drawing. This is not a bad addiction to have, in my opinion. The foundation of a good painting, it is said, and I do believe, is a good drawing. The scale of Alison Norlen's monumental drawings are inspiring, remarkable and staggering to me. She is fearless, in that she is not intimidated by size, challenging herself in the task of creating huge detailed renderings. She freely and easily moves into sculptural and architectural like constructions which are just as impressive if not more so considering what the three dimensional sculpture entails, when it comes to large scale art work. Her passion for drawing extends beyond the two dimensional and is transformed into sculpture and can be seen as a continuum of the drawn line.

Drawing for me has always been is a foundational corner stone of the creative process and the benefits of it transcends, extends into greatly informing other art disciplines and practices. Drawing is a natural and inherent expression to create that we are all born with, and I believe as an artist I need to stay grounded in, in order to thrive creatively regardless of what medium I choose to express myself in.

As an artist and a musician, I would compare drawing to learning to play the piano. Learning the piano is a foundational instrument that gives you the ability to apply practical, theoretical and musical skills, to make it easier to learn and enable one to become accomplished at playing other instruments.

Like the piano, drawing is a discipline that helped me learn that discipline is not something that can be imposed and done through force or obligation and cannot be the reason for the practice. At some point, one has to decide the reason you do it. It must be because you want to do it, and the result is a freedom, to create and accomplish more, and not being afraid to make mistakes.

Preoccupation or being precious about what we create is constricting and limits us as artists and people. Involving ourselves in the free creative process is where we find the creativity to create and change.

“Like Vegas; you tear it down, you rebuild it, and it still has some of the grime. That ever-changing element is how we live; it’s how we conduct ourselves in our environment. We have to constantly compromise and change and, perhaps, be disappointed.”
- Alison Norlen

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