Instinctive Forms

Two intuitive, semi-automatic drawings inspired by natural structures such as roots, bones, and rocks.
I drew both of these forms with identical media and support, in the same place, with the same aim. That is to say no aim at all.These drawings call on my most fundamental influences: the influences which determine the minutia of my visual language, regardless of subject. These kinds of influences, I think, have to be down to a fascination with the form itself, which rings true for me when it comes to natural structures. I don’t know why my hand favours these forms, but I do know that when I subtract everything else (subject, communication, colour etc) my instinct is to compose the drawings in the way you see above.

Even after stripping back the drawing and making it something like an automatic drawing, the forms themselves still take on a different character depending on…what?

I draw them both about two days apart, on days where I can only assume my mood and general outlook was different. I can still see the same instinctive motions pop up in both drawings (that much I think is inevitable. my brain has latched onto something or many somethings to culminate into this tendency towards dynamic, maybe growing(?) structures.), but they differ in how they seem to move. The first drawing is jittery and chaotic, with a gaseous form. The second is solid and more muscular. Both drawings were completely devoid of ultimate aim, and when I was drawing #2 I honestly thought it was turning out the same as #1. It was at the point of realising that it wasn’t that it got me thinking why. Unintentionally, these two drawings act as a study into how mood and outside influence can affect even the most fundamental tendencies involved in my approach to drawing.

When I make a piece of work based entirely off instinct and intuition, I open up my visual language to alterations outside of my control. Or maybe I’m just massively impressionable.


Memoryscape, Valley of The Butterflies

Graphite, A4 sketch, possible preliminary sketch for a larger piece

A drawing based off a variety of documentation I recorded walking through the Valley of The Butterflies in Rhodes. 

Being there without a camera meant that I abandoned the usual route of documenting what is there with the lens and instead used sketches and text: small snippets saying what I noticed, how it smelt or sounded, and what stood out. 

Once I committed to just using text and drawing, I began to piece together a much more wholesome view of things than I would usually get with a camera, despite only having a very limited visual bank. When I relied so much on the camera, I forgot to use my senses or memory, and recall my own perspective. With that in mind this sketch recalls bits and pieces from my walk that caught my eye – this is not an observation, more of a recollection instead.

“Arena” A1, Mixed Media on Card

We are forced to be both the performer and spectator simultaneously 

An analogy of the double edged sword of technologised first world culture, where artificial attachment inhabits every part of our life, and where this “hyper-connection” is both constructive and damaging.

  • A number of different scenarios are unfolding, separate only by circumstance; they are all connected either willingly or otherwise.
  • The figures in the middle depict the harmonious connections, where each benefits the other in a sort of symbiotic relationship with mutual consent. In this circumstance each figure has energy, as if the system is invigorating them.
  • The figures at the bottom right are victims of such a setup. They are bound by and fighting the connections which others have accepted. The “Devil’s Snare” scene from Harry Potter springs to mind with a “don’t fight it or it will strangle you” kind of attitude.
  • The small, doll like beings on the middle and top left are symbolic of the post millennial generations, those of us who have been born amidst the culture of information overload, and know nothing else.
  • There’s an ambiguous figure sitting with its back to us, which could either be a benevolent or malicious entity. It’s almost impossible to know someone through these artificial connections, and that’s part of life now.
  • The beings facing each other are seeking a rare face to face connection, but this connection is weaker and more uncomfortable.
  • The figures on the right are a (possibly generalising?) jab towards the older generation, who cultivate strong human connections, but are unfamiliar with contemporary dynamics.
  • One form faces directly towards the observer, maybe questioning their involvement in this system, maybe turning their back on it.