Blue ink lines of breath on paper

Drawing Breath

May 1, 2021

Reflections on drawing breath in my drawing and sculpture practice, from past to present.

For some time now, I’ve been delving deeper into Drawing Breath. It’s always been part of the way in which I create work, from the palpitations of excitement over new ideas, to the slowing down of my breathing during long periods of repetitive mark-making that have a calming and meditative quality to them.

This can be seen in both my drawings and three-dimensional works, from String Wrapped to Imagined Lines and Groundlines as well as in recent drawing breath works.

Two of my drawings focusing directly on drawing breath, were exhibited in LIM(I)NAL at the Alastair MacLennan Archive, Nov-Dec 2020 and can be viewed on their website.

pen on paper
pen lines of breathing on paper

In February, I was accepted onto a weekend of Drawing Breath, led by Tania Kovats and Jane Sassienie. I’ve been wanting to do this course for some time so was delighted when the chance to take part came up. I was subsequently also accepted onto the Drawing Correspondence program so had the added bonus of being in the middle of an intense period of drawing. These are a few of my experiments from that weekend.

Ink Breath Bubble
Ink Breath Bubble
Ink Splash Bubble
Ink Splash Bubble Avocado

I found myself one evening drawing my in and out breath which I called An Hour Last Night. I’ve no idea why I made these marks, they just felt right at the time, and were my way of reflecting on drawing breath and unwinding during a busy period. I found myself reaching for this way of drawing again when I created a response to the Drawing Correspondence program, this time using a Sufi breathing technique, breathing through the elements, varying their order and intensity when connecting them to each of the six weeks. On reflection, I was possibly reaching out to line to generate some sense of order to my chaotic thoughts and messy drawing experiments. Line is often my instinctive way of working and a way to visually articulate my thoughts.

ink lines of breathing on paper
An Hour Last Night

I’ve recently connected with a group of artists to explore Drawing Breath further and am looking forward to seeing where it leads.

Blue ink lines of breath on paper
Six Weeks Drawing Breath