The title of this post is the response I received recently to a comment I made about some great art I saw in a blog and expressed my envy at being a hopeles artist and having no skill with a pen, pencil or brush.
You see, in my family all the artistic DNA went to my brother who was clearly a skilled artist from an early age winning countless drawing and art competitions as well as having his work published in the local press. I literally couldn’t draw for toffee and my earliest recollections of any attempts by myself at art were weekly drawing lessons at Infants School where we were asked to draw a picture to show the class. I recall that the teacher was less than impressed with my weekly offering of a circle crayoned in yellow with strands emanating from it which I presented as a picture of the sun. I eventually improved my output and extended my portfolio by drawing a square with a triangle on top with 4 smaller squares in the corners and an oblong in the middle on the ground. Have you guessed what it is yet? Yes…a house.
Art became something of a dread lesson for me and I used to quake with fear whenever it was announced we had to produce a collage. A bloody collage; that pointless objective when the teacher would produce a large sack of surplus material obviously left over from the sewing class and us 7 year old pupils would be asked to create a picture using pieces of material cut from the swatches using blunt scissors and stuck on (sugar)paper with a white liquid glue called Marvin. Suffice to say I was hopeless at it and after one particular attempt at around Christmas time was hauled off to the headmaster’s office to show him the dereliction of my artistic talent. Thankfully the headmaster was away so for want of someone else to humiliate me in front of the teacher decided the school secretary was the best she could come up with so together they discussed how crap my collage was. Naturally the tears were flowing by now to such an extent that I remember quite clearly a big green bogey flew from my nostril and landed quite prominently on the corner of the secretary’s desk. At that point the secretary was quite anxious for us to leave and as it was home time I grabbed my satchel as quick as I could and dashed home with no desire ever to draw, paint, stick or glue ever again.
In spite of my complete inability to produce anything worthy of being described as art, that is not to say I do not appreciate and enjoy art, it’s just that I can’t do it myself, or thought I couldn’t. Since being an active blogger I’ve looked with admiration at reams of drawings, paintings and pictures of varying degrees of detail on this site and been persistently impressed. When I was told that I also could draw…because I can indeed hold a pencil, I decided yesterday during a quiet moment at work to give it a go. So in between seeing customers I scanned my surroundings to find something suitable to draw. Well; here’s the drawing (biro on paper) of a plant and pot as it looked in front of me and to be honest I don’t think – for a first attempt – it’s all that bad. In fact, I’ve shown it to a few people in work who have been quite wowed in a fun sort of way. I was so chuffed that I’ve even cut the paper out and stuck it in my Moleskine notebook for posterity.
Now, what can I choose for my next subject?