Why We Don’t Teach

We don’t teach people how to Draw. I truly enjoy giving people advise and tips, and pointing out there are a few things that are reasonably constant, such as basic proportions and taking measurements. Though many who have drawn for sometime find the basics too regimented.

I avoid ever saying this is how it should be done.
There are very good reasons for this, the main one being the difficulty all UK based arts schools face. If you teach a person to draw, you are teaching them a method, a particular way of drawing. My reasoning is, ‘Why would anybody want to draw like me, when they can draw like themselves’. But if anything it takes more work to develop your own style, it means you have to look at a variety of styles, and select aspects of each.
It is really quite difficult, to remain neutral, I am well aware that I already have more influence than I would like. For example  I choose coloured paper for the class to encourage people to use something other than a pencil to draw with., so in a sense I am already dictating the size of the drawing (A3) and the type of material used (if you have ever been a beginner you will know I always suggest starting with charcoal and chalk).

I always I suggest looking at other peoples drawings during the break.

However that does not mean I am against leaning how to draw a particular way, I could even suggest some very good teachers, such as Chris Clements (www.northernrealist.com)  who runs excellent classes based on the Atelier style (traditional/renaissance), he studied in Florence.

However it is not a road I choose to go down , and I think the following images make my point. These are all from my class, where the longest pose is 20mins, and although some are trained artists, the majority are very casual drawers. Look how diverse the styles are!

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