Exercise 1.4 Invention and Mystery

I LOVED completing this exercise. I was really able to lose myself in the process of making and to be imaginative. I was able to reinvent my ideas as my drawing progressed. I took my time over this exercise with lots of reflection time (as I was away for a week) but I think it paid off as it gave me more time to gather my thoughts and ideas of progressing through it. I don’t have a lot of time to do that now but it shows what stepping back can really do for you and your art.

I chose option 3: Allow drawing two objects to suggest a new object from your imagination and extend that in a surreal way.

Initial charcoal studies. My two objects I chose was a pint glass and incense sticks in a holder. This was simply to explore form and get some compositional ideas together.

Notes whilst drawing:

Final drawing:



I wanted to produce something that required a little more invention and this exercise gave me the opportunity to push my imagination and creativity. When completing this final drawing I found myself pulling a lot of what I had discovered when completing the first exercise. From my research I also wanted to incorporate the technique of automatism and developing a more subconscious drawing. I was able to use the ink in this way. After drawing my branches of my trees (which I also wanted to highlight surrealism and create a juxtaposition between branches and fingers), I applied only water onto the page and then dropped ink onto the water. The ink would then only stay within the parameters of the water and although there was a certain degree of control once the ink was dropped I had no control over what happened to it – how it was going to manipulate the form of my tree, add tone and create texture of the bark. I felt completely encapsulated by the direction in which this drawing was taking me.

I started to make conscious links to how my ideas linked with what I was drawing. I discovered things like:

  • a current book i’m reading called ‘The Black Prism’ which is a fictional book. The characters can all ‘draft’ a colour (like magic) and the headquarters is called the Chromeia – my drawing is how I imagine it to look like.
  • my trip to Croatia (which I went on in between doing my preparatory sketches and the final drawing. Dubrovnik Old Town’s architecture inspired me with this spiral tower idea
  • my artist research from Blake which led me to look into surrealism and led me to think in a more mystical way
  • I also found myself listening to music from ‘The Game of Thrones’ which I felt was very apt for the type of drawing I was making.

I feel that all these above points are linked to my drawing without realising it.

I think the fluid media works really well to create the effect of bark. I wish I had more time to complete more detail onto the tower with my fine liner pen adding more intricacy which I think would create a more mysterious feel to the drawing. I think the vines wrapped around the tower emphasise the (attempted) 3D form of the tower. I wonder if the detail in fine liner makes the drawing seem flatter.

Going forward for my assignment piece I would like to experiment with automatism and action drawing in a surrealist way. I may start with the Chapmans brother’s game of Consequences and see if that can spark any ideas.


In preparation for the assessment, I remember my tutor mentioning about having some ‘grounding’ for this drawing. So I decided to add in some pen and water work to create a base for the tower in my drawing. This is the final outcome which I will be submitting.



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