At The Drawing Table

Sometimes, after a hectic day, you look forward to going there just to hide out and sketch. Other times it is waiting for you, before the sun comes up—a cozy place to set a warm cup of coffee, open your favorite sketchbook, and draw to your heart’s content. Having a table set aside in your home for drawing is essential for gathering your thoughts and doing deep creative work.

Scout and Devin found their place at the drawing table and dove into studies of the human figure during Thursday’s youth Drawing Lab.

That is why we have a big table at the center of our studio. It serves as a place of solitude where a student can concentrate during private sessions, or as a gathering place for like-minded creatives bent on improving their skills. The drawing table, in your home or at a studio, is where life-changing lessons occur.

During Wednesday’s Drawing Lab session, Casey and Faith discussed the finer points of how realism can inform fantasy—or how to design a cool looking character.

Our studio culture is built around the drawing table. A big part of that culture is laughter. Lively banter can help students find a creative mindset and relax into a productive learning flow. Sitting at the table makes it easy to extend a drawing hand to help a struggling comrade correct a line or shape, which can set the stage for collaboration and development of new ideas.

Sort of like sitting with friends around the dinner table, except the main course is drawing.

Inherently, drawing is a private activity. But sharing ideas with others at the drawing table can augment your skills and influence your drawing style in entirely new ways. And when the evening is in full swing you can eventually find yourself wonderfully alone in the crowd.

Scout with trusty 2B pencil in hand.

At the drawing table, it is imperative to have all the tools you need within easy reach as to not interrupt your creative flow.

Max goes abstract with her watercolor still life composition.

And you need room to spread out. Because sometimes…

big ideas…

like dinosaurs…

need a place to grow.

Naomi started her dinosaur studies on 8.5 x 11″ paper; then went big as the floor became her drawing table.

By the way, with all the fun we have studying and collaborating, we do manage to finish a drawing, or two.

During Thursday’s session, Fiona completed a face from a Charles Bargue print, shown above. Throughout the evening she was cajoled by those at the drawing table to test her imagination and Steal Like an Artist. We challenged her to combine two unrelated subjects into one composition.

Next day, Fiona texted me this nice little piece…

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Rob Court

Founder and drawing coach at the Scribbles Institute, Rob helps adults and kids learn basic drawing skills for work, school, and enjoyment. He is the author of a number of how-to-draw books.