Big Draw Workshop Focuses on Plants


As part of the Big Draw Festival, on Saturday 26 October 2019, the Art School ran a charcoal drawing workshop centred around the study of plants.  The theme of the Big Draw Festival was ‘Wellbeing and Creativity’ and so our event, entitled ‘The Power of Plants’, focused on the positive effects of both creativity and plants on our wellbeing.

Participants were invited to bring along their favourite house plant and take time out to focus on the patterns and forms in nature, under the expert guidance of Fine Art Tutor and Artist Jane Hayes Greenwood.

The workshop attracted participants with varied experience and involvement in art practice, with one attendee saying, “It’s really nice to be able to attend events like this which are open to the public, as I’m not an art student or work with anything related to art.” Comments from other participants included praise for the Tutor’s attentive teaching style,  welcoming the opportunity to work with an accomplished artist, “The tutor was warm and engaging, she made us feel welcome and unintimidated. She shared new approaches and techniques and allowed us to experiment with these.”  

Artist and Fine Art Tutor, Jane Hayes-Greenwood supporting class participants

Even a brief amount of time spent on a creative pastime has powerful benefits for personal wellbeing. The psychological benefits of indoor plants have been shown to include improved mood, reduced stress, increased productivity and attention span. The physical health benefits include better air quality, reduced blood pressure and fatigue.

This is the second consecutive year that the Art School has participated in the Big Draw Festival.  Last year, the Art School ran a Big Circle Draw class, a traditional drawing class with a twist! Led by Fine Art Tutor and artist, Jack Southern, a group of Art School students and alumni sat in a large circle. With a continuing series of short exercises, each artist took it in turn to play model and every drawing produced by the circle was captured digitally to form an animation that grew as the afternoon continued.

Artist and Fine Art Tutor, Jack Southern, leads the Big Circle Draw workshop

Drawing is fundamental to all courses at the Art School. Under the direction of Diane Magee, our Drawing Studio is at the heart of the Art School’s activities, primarily focusing on the role that observational drawing plays in stimulating and facilitating the development of artists and crafts specialists across our Foundation Diploma and undergraduate and postgraduate degree courses in Fine Art, Historic Carving, Conservation of cultural objects and books and paper, and Art and Material Histories.

We hope to take part in The Big Draw in the future – you can find out more information about our upcoming events here.



If the page is not loading correctly, please update your browser to the latest version.