Drawing for the Artistically Undiscovered by Quentin Blake and John Cassidy

May 30, 2013 in Blog bericht, Book posts, Inspiring artist by admin

tekenboeken blake dujardin

It was because of the resemblance with my own zen drawingbook¬† (white, square and one color accent), that I took Quentin Blake & John Cassidy’s ‘Drawing for the Artistically Undiscovered (published by Klutz) from a bookshelf in a nearby store. I have been a fan of Quentin Blake’s work since the first time I saw it. No matter how scary, horrifying or awful the story was (mostly written by Roald Dahl): his illustrations always made me laugh. Learning how to draw by using a book from the master himself must be great fun!

I know now, that the book is great fun indeed. Reading it, I discovered that there are more similarities with my book than I thought. In essence it’s all the same, but the manner in which you draw is different. In this book you use your own imagination and capability to become what you want to draw. There are no rules, just as long as you have fun and catch ‘the essence’ of what you are drawing. The book is based on Gung-Ho, meaning something like enthusiasm and dedication.

The importance of seeing (the main subject of my book) is not mentioned a lot in this book, but finding a way to ‘catch’ the subjects essence is. Drawing spontaneously, letting go of criticism and using coincidence are all other similarities between this approach and zen drawing. Not such a surprise, since the basic assumptions all come from the eastern world. Quentins approach also matches with Sumi-e, but the results are very different: the humorous and absurd¬† exercises result in funny, sometimes hilarious Quentin-Blake-cartoon-style drawings.

Today I opened the book at a random page and followed the instruction (I have a Dutch book, so here’s my translation back in English): Draw brooms, mops, swabs etc 1) in an enourmous bucket 2) as condemned specimen:





The next exercise was: “draw pencils and pens in a glass, without looking at the subject (exactly the opposite of zen/seeing drawing) and ‘draw a robust plant’:


Finally I drew my own idea: A quick tempered, hairy monster:

harig monster quentin blake

Quite difficult, but fun to do! It resulted in some kind of caveman…

My conclusion: this books sits perfectly within the Zen tradition, just like mine. But I must say that seeing (visual awareness) remains the most important element in the ability to draw and it is not really explained how to do that.

For children and adults, this is a very nice book to learn how to draw. Google the title for images and you will find a lot of funny creations made by others!

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