Does a drawing have to look like somewhere?

This week I have been thinking about drawing – specifically the need to recreate a visual scene accurately or at least semi accurately. For the past few weeks I have been going to the same spot most days and drawing. But nothing I have drawn would be recognisable as the physical place. However for me they evoke the feeling of the place every bit as much as a quick sketch might. My sound drawings in particular are evocative of every sound, high, low, deep, left, right, short or long. I know what marks represent each sound and I remember hearing it in my place.

A little less direct, but I have also been doing walking drawings. Taking a variety of tools and a long thin piece of cartridge paper and holding it against my leg and slowly moving the paper a long as I walked. What results is a record of every step, every knock and corner, every time I changed pace or moved differently. These also evoke a feeling of the land.

I find these drawings every bit as valid as ones where someone might recognise the place.

Walking drawings – together these represent about 1.5 miles walking


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