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The discipline of drawing

While archiving some of the ephemera relating to Sven Berlin recently I started reading his Notes on the Experience of Drawing for Young People, written for his grand-daughter Tanya in 1992. One comment stood out for me: ‘…each drawing, however small, is the first tiny shoot…of an inspiration…’ and it reminded me of the artist Rod Hague and his many, many sketch books! Drawing for Rod is a regular daily discipline and more often than not one which leads to a fully developed work of art.

Notebooks by the artist Rod Hague
Rod Hague's notebooks - just a small selection...

Just as a writer should have their notebook to jot down those inspired sentences that arrive in the middle of the night, so too an artist needs to put pen or pencil to paper, wherever they are. For example, Sven, while working on the land in Cornwall in 1938/1939, produced numerous pencil drawings, often just a few lines, on blank postcards.

There is another connection between these two artists, Sven exhibited with Fordingbridge Art Club at Salisbury Art School in 1961, when one of the young Rod Hague’s first drawings was shown. My book Contrasts charts Rod’s great versatility as an artist, a talent well worth exploring.


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