How Do You Draw?

"The principal goal of education is to create men who are capable of doing new things, not simply of repeating what other generations have done—men who are creative, inventive, and discovers. The second goal of education is to form minds which can be critical, can verify, and not accept everything they are offered."
Jean Piaget 

Pick your work surface: Do you work in a watercolor journal? On loose watercolor paper, copier paper, yellow legal pad, junk mail, netflix envelopes, textured handmade paper, cardboard cereal box, a moleskine drawing journal, photograph/shiny magazine, masking tape, fabric, wood, canvas, index cards? Describe your drawing environment: Do you balance your journal on your knee? Draw comfortably at a table, stand in front an angled easel? Journal balanced awkwardly on your lap on the metro, sitting on a drizzly park bench, lying on the beach on a towel on sand, in your art studio with perfect lighting? What do you do to your surface “before” drawing: Do you paint abstract watercolors or acrylics? Start with a rough pencil sketch or an uneven collage glued to the page, hand stitch the edges? How do you treat your work “after” drawing: Do you watercolor your drawings? Mail off your artwork as good mail day fodder? Paint with acrylics, shade in pencil, stitch on your sewing machine, add collage, perhaps embellish with gelly rolls? Cut up for art journal fodder? What about your color preferences: Do you work in only black or sepia? Adore a huge basket of fresh markers or overlapping transparent colors? Pick what type of lines you draw: Would we find an abundance of cross-hatching or curvy doodles? Clean edges, precise circles? Do you use a ruler or french curve? Do you like your lines to run or stay put? Light, bold... smudged?

Calculate the possible permutations

We all use our pens in different ways. I might draw and immediately watercolor my drawings. You might draw at the beach where the splash of water is inevitable. Permanence would be key for both of us. Or not.

What works for me, might not work for you. And vice versa.

As you get into drawing, you’ll get pickier about the writing implements you use. You will care about the consistency of the line, how long it lasts, whether you can carry it in your backpack. You will care whether it is waterproof, how quickly it dries, whether it feathers, whether it can take raindrops without dissolving.

You will want to know exactly what the pen can do.