Sunday, February 06, 2011

Anita the Artist

For Christmas, my sister bought me a beautiful sketch book and a set of Derwent Graphic sketching pencils. I have never drawn before - not really! OK! I've drawn a couple of pencil sketches to support features I've written that have been published in small press magazines! You can see them on my website in the photogallery. But, I've never had any training and I've never just drawn for fun. Sitting down and sketching for fun is something I've always wanted to try.

This is why, I decided to go to the SCBWI London Sketch Crawl at the Museum of Childhood at Bethnal Green. The museum has the largest collection of toys, dolls, doll's houses and games in the world. I met up with fellow SCBWI members and professional illustrators, Anne-Marie Perks, Clare Tovey and Bridget Strevens. We spent a few hours in the morning sketching the artefacts.

Here are the results of my little dabble at being an artist for a day. I have also posted photographs of the things I drew so you could see how close I got to the originals.

I found it was a case of drawing what you see. I tried to put the lines in the right place. Here you can see I changed the wing and the back rudder. I did this on purpose because I thought it didn't look right the way I had originally drawn it. I couldn't work out how to get the lines to look like a wing, so I made up my own.

The picture of the rocking horse took me nearly an hour to draw. I had decided before I went I was going to draw a rocking horse and I was determined to do it. I had also decided before I went (as I knew I was going to go to a toy museum) that I wanted to draw some teddy bears. Here is the result:

The last drawing I did was of a big red train:

As you can see, I had a few problems with the perspective with this one. The angle at the front is different to the angle at the back. I had been sitting still for quite a long time at this point and I moved half way through the drawing and then I couldn't get it right. It was also lunch time. I had arranged to meet up with the others for lunch and I was getting hungry so I did not really have time to fix it. It was quite apparent to me though I have no real understanding of perspective. I have so much to learn.

Here we all are with our drawings after we had eaten:

It was a great day out. It was a pity I couldn't stay longer but, I had to get home.

I recommend attending a sketch crawl yourself. SCBWI organise several across the UK.You may surprise yourself with your results. I certainly did!!!

Anyway, I hope you like my drawings. Please feel free to comment and give me advice.


Teresa Ashby said...

What a great idea! I love sketching but haven't done any for years. I've never heard of a sketch crawl until now.
I liked your picture of the plane best - it looks as if it has a character, but perhaps that's because you added in your own bits :-)

Anita Marion Loughrey said...

Thanks Teresa,
It was suggested I draw one of the teddies sitting in it and it could be the basis of a picture book story. But, I just can't seem to work out how to put the teddy in the plane at the moment. If I ever work it out I will post it on my blog :)

Jacqueline Howett said...

Great stuff! This makes me want to start sketching again. I have some children's books sitting on the back burner, but right now been busy in fiction, but its tempting to change lanes.

heather k said...

I wish I'd come, it looks like a fabulous museum.

Anita Marion Loughrey said...

It was a fabulous museum Heather. There was loads more stuff I would have liked to try and draw, if only I'd had the time.

Lynne Chapman said...

It's so lovely that you went for it, even though you had little previous experience. The whole ethos of the SketchCrawl idea is that it should support and empower people who wouldn't necessarily go out and draw under normal circumstances.

You did some lovely drawings too - well done you!

Anita Marion Loughrey said...

Thanks Lynne.
It was the first time I had ever tried still-life drawing. I am thinking maybe I will take a class. :)

Anita Marion Loughrey said...

Jacqueline I was thinking aobut what you said about taking up sketching again.

I think you should go for it. I wonder if it is like riding a bike in that you never forget? Or maybe, it would be better to do regular practice, like swimming.

Couldn't you just drive down the middle of the road and you could be in both lanes at the same time? :)