The secret gallery’s blog

Maybe the first secret gallery in Doolin, Co. Clare, Ireland

Posts Tagged ‘drawing

Don’t Think, Merge Instead!

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Riding “Iago” at Dunmoe Riding School 2009

Often it is necessary to think a great deal before you do something and after, but during it is often better to merge with what you are doing: your surroundings, the computer, the horse, the materials that you are making art with. Giving away the control can seem a little scary, but the times when something goes really well for me I am usually not doing very much! As my riding instructor used to say “like nothing” when I and the horse would jump or do some flat work well. This makes me think about when I am doing art, that I probably think too much a lot of the time. Thinking can limit the possibilities and sometimes stifle creativity. If we allow the parts of us that are usually without a voice to express themselves then we may come across something of a delicate and/or profound nature.

“Maybe Human” one of the paintings in “Merging 3” exhibition by Marianne Slevin

In August, I was in a three person show called “Merging 3”. I was the person who wanted to call it Merging. At the time I was not really sure why, but the other night while reading the book called Spiritual Alchemy the author, Dr.Christine Page wrote about how when people merge with what they are doing there are greater results. In an experiment people guessed heads or tails on a computer game, most people got  around 60% correct but the difference between the people who got around 80% was that they talked about merging with the computer.

Painting and drawing are exercises in merging for me, merging the different parts of me and the materials that I use and often the environment. I also attempt to merge with something greater then myself and if I am thinking too much then that will hinder any voyages into the unknown.

Written by Marianne Slevin

26 January, 2010 at 1:08 am

Posted in Thoughts on art

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Some Words on Drawing Crash Course Part One

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Draw on

Close your eyes, take a deep breath, and imagine that you are really good at drawing! Now sharpen your pencils( HB,2B,3B,4B,5B,6B)! Make sure your rubber is clean and you have some paper taped down so it does not move about while you are trying to draw on it! If you are drawing from life it is much easier to draw if the paper is on a tilted board, easel or wall rather than flat on a table. If you are working on a wall it feels nicer if you put a couple of layers of paper on top of each other, unless you are going for the look you get when you draw over a hard or slightly rough surface.

Draw outwardly

Hands are one of the hardest things to draw, I think, so why not practice by drawing your other hand. Years ago Kathy Prendergast did an amazing hand drawing that was like a map, it was huge, and blue. I love the way our hands look like maps. Feet can be good to draw too. When I was in collage in Crawford in Cork I did a series of drawings of my face drawing by touch.  Some of them I built up layers of card, paper, material and netting they all had a map like quality and felt like landscapes almost. So no excuses we always have something we can draw! We are surrounded by things we can draw. After a while you may find it boring just to draw for the sake of drawing and need to draw  whatever you are really interested in, confused by, obsessed by! It could be folds of material or it could be space travel ! It might be very illusive but every so often you get a glimpse of it’s tail and it leads you somewhere interesting and you want to keep following it!

Draw inwardly

It can also be really interesting to start to draw but not allow ourselves to draw anything recognisable, just to kind of doodle and keep going with it to see how it develops. Make marks and experiment with what you can do, and have fun!( I remember we all did this for weeks maybe months in college, and our own personal work developed out of it; over time our real interests were revealed.) Draw with your eyes closed, draw with the hand you don’t usually draw with, draw really quickly, draw really slowly, see how inventive you can be. Tune into how you feel and see how your line and instinctive marks change as your moods do. I like to draw as if the pencil or whatever I am drawing or painting with is an extension of me. Bold as I am bold, subtle as I am subtle. Sometimes I let the pencil lead the way as if it has a complete mind of it’s own; I guess this is when my subconscious mind taking over!

A word of advice, don’t throw away anything. It is great to look back over drawings, they often look different after a little hibernation! Not everything is meant to be a ‘finished’ piece some pieces are just stepping stones, but just as worth while as the ‘finished’ ones. One day they might look even better! Soon I will be giving some free drawing and art classes at the Secret Gallery. So if you are in the Doolin area you are welcome to join the Art Classes.

Written by Marianne Slevin

11 May, 2009 at 12:40 am

Posted in Thoughts on art

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Conversations with trees

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Drawings in the studio

Left Bird flight formation

Right Conversation with a tree

 

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Detail of drawing

pigment and ink drawn with an eagles feather on wall-paper

A few years ago I attended a Shaman weekend workshop in Dunderry park, Co. Meath, which I really enjoyed. Part of the workshop introduced the practice of “Stalking Awareness” which was a very slow moving operation involving listening to the Earth, one particular morning this was followed by having a conversation with a tree, it is amazing what you hear when you listen! This particular tree was not too happy about man’s unharmonious relationship with nature, particularly roads and traffic, considering its close proximity to Tara and nearby motorway it is not surprising! I still don’t know if it was me talking or the tree, I suppose it is all the same thing!

Written by Marianne Slevin

20 January, 2009 at 12:28 am

Flight Formations and Leaps of Faith!

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“Part of the same thing”        Detail of drawing in progress

Pigment and ink on Wallpaper      Marianne Potterton  2009

 

This morning I was thinking about how birds fly in amazing formations, I find it really inspiring. I watched a couple of videos of amazing flight formations, they were fantastic! It connects to lots of things in I am thinking and feeling about at the moment but too much to write about right now so I will write another post about that soon! The drawing I am doing now is inspired by flight formations.

Written by Marianne Slevin

14 January, 2009 at 5:03 pm

Posted in In progress

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Let me light up!

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Detail of work on paper in the studio today

Willow Charcoal, indigo pigment and ink on paper   Marianne Potterton 2008-2009

 

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Detail of work on paper in the studio today

Compressed charcoal, indigo pigment and ink on paper   Marianne Potterton 2008-2009

 

I am feeling a bit disgruntled today about certain things so I thought I would make some art about it! Things like not being able to smoke in a pub or cafe. I don’t care what they say it has changed things; people don’t go out and talk and and fun like they used to, they stay in and watch television more. Our freedom is slipping away, bit by bit. Life has gotten so serious, so today I say light up, (a candle if you don’t smoke!) lighten up and liven up!

These drawings started off as stone rubbings from the floor of the Secret Gallery, then I saw that it looked a little like the sea and coast line maybe even the Cliffs of Moher.If you look closely you can see a little boat and a tent, James in search of wilderness!

Written by Marianne Slevin

5 January, 2009 at 5:14 pm