12. Experiments with line – Part 1

I unearthed a post-it note that I’d scribbled onto some time ago. It said this:

Time is ripped

away from us

& bleeds into

the past & future

I wish for a quieter


This idea of time being a physical thing and not linear fascinates me. I am uncertain why I wrote the last two lines but it seems to fit and it is likely that the word ‘house’ here could be a metaphor for my head/body.

I have a habit of quickly scribbling ideas/thoughts onto the nearest piece of paper. More often than not it is rapidly scrawled onto a yellow post-it note (I have acquired a few booklets in my time), sometimes the corner of a newspaper, sometimes an important document (oops). Occasionally when I come cross a note at a later date it is illegible. This is frustrating – perhaps my best ideas are illegible!

Some more examples…

Many years ago

we joined the

right path.

then we strayed –


coming together

Memories etched

Landscapes like

Memory. – Remem-

bers the past   .

Ordered construction

// Reality makes


Life/time as a

surface with events as lines & marks

                             unfolding- tundra

Significant verbs to consider when drawing: ripped, bleeds, joined, strayed, etched

Tim Ingold’s Lines: A Brief History is a book that I wish I’d read whilst training as an art teacher. It is an enlightening read which many a teacher could draw inspiration from, with so many potential ideas for projects – its scope is immense. My first lesson to year 7’s was always based around the question: What is line? The list I have accumulated so far from this book is as follows…


A few weeks ago I was given the task of formulating my own definition to the question: What is drawing? Ingold’s book had in fact come at the right time and was helping to clarify thoughts I had been exploring with regard to my own drawings. Sometimes it just takes a word to shed light on something, to expand an idea. In this case I was now considering drawing as an act of ‘inscription’. The word ‘inscription’ as with the word ‘imprint’ is indicative of so much more – of something physical, historical, relating to time and matter, movement, marks and surface. And surface had become prominent in my mind at this time – I began thinking of surface as body (something physical/tangible) and of time (metaphysical) or, as with the post-it note ideas: a combination of the two.

These drawings, created using acetate, scalpel, sand-paper, light and paper – were produced in response to ideas and verbs previously mentioned…


As I was cropping these images in Photoshop I came to realise how much they looked like landscapes. I could even see a running figure in one of them. Also, as was to be expected, the marks (through the process of light and shadow) had revealed their etched quality. As previously mentioned, I have an affinity to the etched mark and consequently this was very appealing and rather apt in what I was attempting to portray.

Memories etched

Landscapes like


Life/time as a

surface with events as lines & marks

                             unfolding- tundra


Definition of drawing to date:

Communicating an idea, using movement (energy), marks (surface) and connections (physical / psychological).


One thought on “12. Experiments with line – Part 1

  1. ‘I wish for a quieter house’… I meant to remark on this when you posted it, and am reminded by your latest post. In my travels through my old post its, the day before, I found *The Poetics of Space. Bachelard. The house allows one to dream in peace. Don’t remember writing it, but was pleased to be reminded of the book.


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