I believe the most fundamental skill a visual artist must develop is the ability “to see.” Without this, there is no understanding of the relationships between all the visual elements, and drawing from life is an essential discipline to learn how to see. Drawing from life creates a link between hand and eye, and between the outer world and our perception of it. When you draw in ink, you cannot erase it, and this helps me to let my line flow and record the character of the moment.

Besides drawing from life, I have two other areas of attention that have become part of my life-long practices. One is that I start a drawing with no preconception or agenda in order to discover new ideas and images that spring from a blank page. Many times it begins with a wandering line. This form of discovery is difficult and needs continual practice too.


The third area of my practice, is to revisit themes and ideas already expressed, to discover new possibilities, variations and meanings. My best images are the product of these three different disciplines and when viewed together, they create a more complete vision of my work, and better understanding of my creative process.

All content by Richard Gins

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