By Barbara Weeks
Did you know that until the late 1920s - early 1930s drawing was part of the regular school curriculum? While not one of the 3 Rs, it was considered an important tool for developing concepts, sharpening thought, and sharing ideas.
One of the major factors was the development of photography made drawing seem like an unnecessary skill. In more recent years, computer advancements in the visual communication field made drawing appear to be unimportant even unnecessary but things are changing.
Want to Draw More but Need a Nudge?
Whether it’s called drawing, sketching, or doodling, today, we’re rediscovering there are real benefits to drawing. If you're an experienced artist looking to reboot or a newbie looking for kindred spirits, this is for you.
Benefits of Drawing
- Improves eye-hand coordination
- Improves memory
- Improves communication skills
- Relieves stress (Have you seen all the coloring books for grown-ups that are in the stores?)
- Increases creativity
- Increases observational skills
- Increases attention to detail
- Records ideas
- Increases positive emotions (Why do you think restaurants give crayons an paper to children?)
- The more you draw the better your drawing skill
- It's fun
And this is just a partial list!
We know the benefits of drawing; it only makes sense to draw more. It’s funny that two of the causes for drawing less are now big helps to start drawing more – the computer and the internet.
There’s an internet group out there made just for you and your sketching needs. FaceBook offers an almost endless list of groups that unite like-minded sketchers for encouragement, inspiration, to share information and sketches. There are drawing quests issued on Facebook and Instagram to challenge you to draw more. Post your work, add the proper # and join in the fun.
On location sketching:
- Urban Sketchers Click here for Regional Chapters
- Urban Sketchers-Chicago
- Plein Air Artists Group
- Urban Watercolorist Group
- Artist’s Journal Workshop
- Inside Your Sketchbook
- Doodlers Anonymous
- In the Artist’s Studio: Daily Practices and Procedures
Hashtags:The challenges vary and crop up seasonally. Search these hashtags for ideas:
Working for years as a graphic designer, I reached a point when I felt handcuffed by the computer and missed the creative boost of sketching by hand. That’s when I discovered Urban Sketchers (thank you Gabi Campanario!) and Everyday Matters (thank you, Danny Gregory). They were the beginning. There was no turning back! I found I didn’t need an excuse to draw, I had reasons to draw.
How about you, why do you draw? Do you have a favorite group?
Want to keep up to date by email? Fill in your email address in the place provided in the upper right corner under the banner. We look forward to hearing from you.