Drawing has always been a BIG part of my life. My love for drawing started when I was quite young. During those early days of my engagement with print media, I was mesmerized by the Hardy Boys illustrative Classics and Archie comics, and I started to draw “childlike” creations of what I was reading. My love for drawing remains true till this day, and it is the basis of my illustrative paintings – and let’s think about it, every great painting begins with the act of drawing to some degree.
While in school, I learned to utilize my ability to sketch and draw to my advantage. Essentially, I was able to encapsulate the large volumes of information presented during lectures in sketches, and sometimes in detailed drawings. One had to be “quick on the draw” to keep up. This led to a personal discovery of my most astute ability- my visual/spacial intelligence.
A recent post on Fast Company highlighted recent research done by the University of Waterloo, Ontario that discovered that drawing is particularlybeneficial for older adults regarding memory. This is so because certain regions of the brain dealing with memory remain intact in spite of aging. As human beings age, the brain deteriorates; oftentimes leading to diseases that affect memory like dementia and Alzheimer’s, so episodic memory is directly affected. What is interesting however, is that while structures like the hippocampus in the brain (thanks Fallout 4) that deal with memory retrieval and coding may deteriorate, regions associated with visuospacial skills remain mostly intact, and this is what aids in the memory retention despite the effects of aging.
Illustrations by Adrian Blake.
There are myriads of studies that prove the positive correlation between drawing and memory development and retention. Each individual has unique skills and talents, and I know that not everyone will become famous artists and illustrators. However, if only for the fact that drawing promotes memory retention in humans as they age, or simply just passing the time without the guilt of wasting it, it is a good enough reason for everyone to explore their creativity and simply draw more. For as Paul Klee said: “A drawing is simply a line going for a walk.”
This commission was done for a family who lost their son to an ailment. The family requested a piece be done that would always remind them of how they saw their son, as an angel, who loved the beach and being in nature. This painting is primarily set around being in a warm environment (similar to that of their family unit), with a beautiful backdrop landscape and the waves rushing on the beach. Their son’s representation is in a peaceful environment, which symbolizes the peace that his life brought to theirs. This painting captured specifically what the family had in mind, and it is now their personal piece that they all cherish in their home, in loving memory of their son.
In this painting the subject matter is very similar to the one above, as this was the second commission done for different members within the same family unit mentioned above. Despite the similarity in subject matter the environment is different. My clients requested this difference in order to add a contrasting dynamic from the first commission. What made this unique is the difference in atmosphere. The colors are cooler, and the moonlight hitting the waves adds its own visual impact in the piece.
This drawing was done for a client who was interested in having a professional portrait of her daughter done for her daughter’s birthday. This portrait was to capture her childlike innocence and personality. Both my client and subject loved the piece, and it made for a wonderful gift that they both cherish to this day.
One of my favorite things to do is draw portraits. To draw a portrait and represent the sitters likeness is no easy task. It takes a very different level of seeing and hand eye coordination. The difficulty increases even greater when the portrait is done live, in real time. This portrait was one such piece, and the likeness of my subject was captured wonderfully and presented to the family members who requested have it as a part of their personal collection.
Life is like a game of chess sometimes, and we are only pieces being controlled by an unseen hand; a hand that we all know is there, but still question it presence. Some say time governs all things, while some believe in something more personable…someone. God. Either way, this world and the happenings therein is all controlled chaos, and wonderful at that. There is some level of solace in the thought that there is something greater in this life, but a slight ere of trepidation not knowing for sure what really controls things.
Being mere movable pieces in this great game, we all play a game of hide and seek. One day we are the seekers, curious, full of wants and needs, hopes and dreams; looking for something to believe in, someone to comfort our wondering minds. Another day, we are the ones hiding. We hide things about ourselves that trouble us; things that we wish to conceal and have only our soul to be privy to.
All we have is time in this great game. Time can change all things- time can heal. In time we stop searching and even hiding. Then and only then we become the ones controlling the game we had been only movable pieces in.