The blot drawing finished – evolution


This drawing has been on my board for a long time now, occasionally giving way to something else, but my attention has always come back to this. I was even resisting finishing it because it was so pleasing to work on. To read about its beginning and see photos of the early development go to my previous post here.

One change I have made is the orientation. I worked the entire drawing when the paper was horizontal, and it now has made a quarter turn in an anti-clockwise direction. To me, this makes more visual sense, with the weight at the top, and the imagery trickling down. For the found creatures and objects within the drawing, the turn has made little difference, as they were all created depending only on where the original faint marks led, so you may find creatures spinning gently through space, hanging from a thread, drifting towards the next form. Strangely, the turning has caused some of the shapes to become identifiable as something completely different. Maybe there is no right way up.

I had no plan to find identifiable creatures or objects of any kind, but it seems to be human nature to look for something recognisable within abstract form, and I am fine with that. I am planning to call it ‘Evolution’ as it has been that for me, and that also refers to the evolving creatures within.

Below are details. The drawing was made with several weights of graphite pencils, from HB to 8B, and highlights of colour in Caran d’Ache Pablo pencils, on a basis of blots made using Liquid Pencil. The drawing is approximately 83 x 55 cm, measured at the widest parts.


Author: anna warren portfolio

I draw, I paint, I am a printmaker. Always searching for the interesting detail in the world around me.

37 thoughts

    1. Thank you Richard, that’s great to hear – I value your opinion. This kind of work is something I feel comfortable with, more than the more predictable realistic, even though I still dabble in that direction a bit too! I like to push myself in unexpected directions, and these are the pieces I feel reflect my artistic philosophy.

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  1. It is a stunning work and I like the way the weight or distribution of shapes change – as if some are falling away. The little forms are so lightweight that it is as if they are blowing on a breeze, not unlike dandelion seeds. I’m sure that your time in the Australian outback has influenced this drawing – with dried up plants and wind abounding.


    1. That’s a beautiful analogy of dandelion seeds. I’m sure you’re right that my travel experiences affect the way I have worked on this. Turning the piece around made a big difference to the sense of lightness as well, it gave the lighter elements much more freedom and opportunity to catch the breeze!

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    1. I have to have a starting point, whether it is drawing from life or from marks on the page. Even though I made the blots in the first place I have no idea what they will look like when I lift off the cling wrap and I love the freedom and constraints that gives. Go for it Rosie, I would love to see what you do!

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  2. I adore this idea and love the way it’s evolved. It’s interesting that turning it around gave you a new perspective. It must have been difficult to know when to stop, especially when you’re enjoying the process. It must be so tempting to add just another bit and end up overdoing it. Perfectly judged 🙂


    1. Knowing when to stop is a perennial challenge! With this one, once I had worked into all the blots I regarded it as finished. But it might not be … there could be some areas that need just a little more maybe. And it might take on a whole new life if I decide to cut it up and make a 3D object out of it, but I think it is safe for now!


    1. Thank you Johanna – so nice to know you find it soothing. I can see the drawing in relation to those photos from satellites, of space that just goes and goes, and we have no idea really what is out there …


  3. What an incredible piece Anna! I’ve loved your journey, step by step. Love seeing the details and how it flows. You are right, my mind tries to identify the shapes but I also feel like it takes me to another world, if its somewhere out in the galaxy or under the microscope its so interesting.


  4. Such a fabulous piece Anna, I think your name is perfect. It just seems some of your dried plant forms have morphed into this page and developed a life of their own as they twine across the page. It is nice to see your delicate drawings on such a large scale. Karen.


    1. Thank you Karen – it has been interesting to see influences from my previous work coming unbidden into this piece, each one a surprise for me! I guess it is impossible to escape from the things which gradually build inside one’s head. Not that I want to! Every mark I made was an instinctive one, dictated by what was before me, and must have come from experiences.

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  5. This has an ethereal energy that is playful and fascinating to me Anna … You never fail to amaze me – I love it !


    1. Oh thank you Poppy, so glad you do! Some of the things I do I like, some I don’t (they never get to see the light of day!) and some I am very fond of, and this is one of those! I’m not sure how well it stands as a complete piece, but I like the ‘bits’ of it!

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