On The Other Hand….

9 Oct

Charcoal and pastel: Left Hand Drawing.

I draw everyday. It underpins my professional practice. Sometimes I go on courses to be shaken out of my complacency because it’s too easy to stay in your comfort zone and not take any risks. This means that you don’t develop. I’ve been working with a very good drawing teacher at a local college and she encourages artists to regularly draw with the ‘other’ hand, in my case it’s the left. I’ve produced some drawings I’ve been very pleased with using this method. It’s a bit weird. For a start, your ‘normal’ hand and arm are used to the exercise you’re giving them; your other hand isn’t and it’s pretty tough at first when you realise just how much effort drawing at an easel is and how much strain it puts on unfamiliar muscles.

You’re also using the ‘other’ side of your brain so the way you observe and interpret what you’re seeing is different. I find it easier to set the model within the space when I’m drawing with my ‘other’ hand, although the line is more wobbly because I don’t have such a good level of muscle control. I guess I’m using the side of my brain that governs spatial things – that’s about the limit of my scientific knowledge!

This is a large easel drawing in charcoal and chalky pastels onto sugar paper. I found it much easier than normal to get the proportions right and to do tricky bits like the hand.



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