Here I share lesson plans and reflections on my DRAWING MOVEMENT WORKSHOPS, acknowledge the sources of my methods and invite comments.
LESSONS and REFLECTIONS are published under a Creative Commons Share Alike license. This means that you are free to use and adapt the methods to your practice. However, in any publications, acknowledgement of this URL must be made in reference to these methods: http://lisaroberts.com.au/blog/?p=664 By acknowledging this URL you automatically acknowledge my sources.
The theory behind my practice is that physical and biological forces shape us and our environment and that drawing movement can visualise body knowledge of these forces. This is ancient knowledge that is important to recover in this time of need to reconnect.
Absolute Dance, a primal form created by Rudolf von Laban, inspires my preference for body rhythm as the catalyst for drawing.
[Laban] set out from the idea that we should be able to perceive rhythm not only through our ears; that our eyes should be just as capable of perceiving it. When we see the waves of the sea from afar, so that we cannot hear their sounds, we yet fully take in their rhythm. Why should we not have the same delight, he argued, from seeing a dancer? Why should not the dance, like a moving sculpture, be sufficient in itself? It was on these theories that he based the Absolute Dance (Gertrud Bodenwiesser, The New Dance, pp.69-70).
A5 recycled paper sheets (clipped to A5 wooden drawing boards) and clutch pencils (with large soft leads) are made available to workshop participants.
Enter the space
Walk through the space, aware of your breath as you consciously focus on leaving behind the physical experience of getting here (by foot, bike, car or public transport) (Ref. Christine McMillan, 2008).
What changes do you note in your breathing?
Now imaginatively enter and explore a wide white page that is bound within the 3 dimensions of this place – its length, breadth and height.
Focus on your feet connecting to the ground through the weight of your whole body.
Imagine marking the ground with inky feet, drawing a scale that ranges between extremely light and heavy.
Use other body parts to draw lines of different weight through all the dimensions of your imagined 3D page.
Think of your lines as drawing the 4th dimension of time.
Gradually find stillness. Close your eyes. Breathe. Imagine yourself now within a new clear space. You have moved through the imagined white page and into the reality of the present. Open your eyes.
Take your drawing board and pencil and, without looking at the paper, slowing walk and draw a line that spirals clockwise from the centre. Allow the weight of your pencil on the paper to trace the weight of your body on the ground. Your lines will reflect this experience of movement.