Thursday, September 17, 2009

D.R.E.W. - Drawings that Reflect the Experience of Words

by Drew Martin

While working on my Masters at The New School in 2004, I wrote a rambling but occasionally insightful paper (bound as a small book) with the egocentric title: D.R.E.W. - Drawings that Reflect the Experience of Words. The essay suggests that drawing, in our earliest stages, is more about movement than imagination. Tracing movement with a crayon builds up a creative relationship of action and art. I call drawing a "byproduct" of motion.

I also explore the idea that drawing is essential to human development and the advancement of civilization. The mind and map developed together to understand space in abstract ways and to eventually discover, amongst other things, that the world is round. The drawn map is a record of both the movement of a hand as well as a body through space. We move our bodies across seas, deserts and mountains and record these movements, landmarks and features in our minds and then we translate this information to a scale that can be understood at a glance.

My essay eventually works its way towards the D.R.E.W concept by replacing a physical landscape with the abstract terrain of words and language. At the time, I was drawing for Logos, which required reading lengthy and academic writings and providing editorial drawings. The essay attempts to explain and describe the types of drawing I did. They were expressions of text instead of illustrations of text. The result (hopefully) is a symbiotic rather than a parasitic relationship between the image and words. Most importantly the drawing should have its own emotional existence.