Freehand Skool: Sketchbook as Document & Impetus - Lesson 2

Relational Observation

What do we see in objects and constructions? Where are there recurring shapes and patterns? How does finding these patterns enable us to find more analogous relationships between disparate objects?

Prompt # 1

Walk into the hallway of your apartment building or home and find the first “N” shape within the architecture. Sketch the architecture and highlight the “N.” In your mind, then imagine the scene turned 90 degrees. Sketch this scene while highlighting the “Z” shape. How does your perception of the space change?

Prompt # 2

Now that you have visualized both the “N” shape and the “Z” shape, consider where else these shapes are seen. Create a list of 5 things if you can. How are these objects similar or different? Is there a connection beyond their shape?


Prompt # 3

Pause. Quietly sit and think.

Take five minutes to write simple sentences describing what you are currently aware of without indicating judgement.

  • I am sitting in a chair
  • I am wearing red shoes
  • I just ate lunch
  • I would like a cup of tea

Make note of when your mind travels to other time periods than the now.

What causes these jumps?

Understanding Beyond Labels

Prompt # 4

Find a friend, neighbor, or family member to draw with. Make a few quick portrait sketches of each other. Either take turns drawing or draw each other drawing the other. Take your time. Once you have finished your portraits, consult and brainstorm, making new labels for the features on your drawings based on function and shape rather than on the pre-existing labels (ie: nose, ear, etc.) that we are aware of.

Once you have finished labeling your drawings, begin again and draw another small series of portraits while focusing on the new labels that you have made for each feature.

How did the second drawing differ from the first? Are labels making rendering more difficult than it needs to be?