GREEN DRAWING CHALLENGE
OCT 1ST - 31ST 2020
IN ASSOCIATION WITH
CELEBRATING 20 YEARS OF DRAWING FESTIVALS!
The Big Green Drawing Challenge - 31 days of climate change themed drawing from the 1st - 31st October 2020!
Making time for drawing is hard when facing the demands of daily life. And we all want to "do our bit" for the environment but changing habits isn't easy.
Daily life with all its pressures, distractions and screen time can leave us feeling disconnected from ourselves and our environment. We crave more time for creativity because it brings us joy and moments of stillness in a fast paced world. Slowing down, making time to draw and develop a more sustainable way of living are good intentions but where do we start when as a society, our addiction to being "busy" runs so deep? And what can we actually do in order to live more sustainably when we already feel too overwhelmed by daily life to even think about changing our habits?
One thing is clear - we can't make these changes to our lifestyles that are necessary not only to improve our sense of wellbeing and levels of creativity but also to curb the destruction of the planet, alone.
Deep and lasting societal change must start with the individual and come from within and it is my belief that the more connected we feel to ourselves and to nature, the more we appreciate it, love it and want to protect and nurture it. But first we must learn to stop and be still in ourselves and the world. And we can do this by developing a daily drawing practice. In making time to slow down and observe the beauty of nature through drawing daily in October, it is my hope that our increased awareness and appreciation of nature and all that it gives us will motivate us to do all we can as individuals to protect it for ourselves and future generations.
This challenge is for people who want to draw more, not only improve their drawing skills but to deepen their relationship with themselves and with nature through drawing daily but know that they need the accountability and motivation that comes with taking part in a challenge and being part of a group of people striving for the same goal in order to do so.
This challenge is part of The Big Green Draw - Climate of Change - celebrating the 20th anniversary of The Big Draw Festival.
"The 2020 Big Green Draw Festival #ClimateOfChange focuses on the relationship between people and our living environments and ecosystems; highlighting how we live today and the ways in which we do and do not harmonise with nature. So this is a great year (for you) to draw, explore, get out and about, kick start a new creative you and be part of The World's Biggest community of drawing enthusiasts!"
Challenge participants will receive a Welcome Pack which will guide them through a process of creating a drawing challenge bespoke to their individual needs and interests. The only "must" is that drawing subjects relate to the theme of "Climate of Change". Participants are invited to join and be part of the thriving online challenge communities on Facebook, Instagram and Zoom and have access to a month-long program packed full of live events.
What's the link between drawing and the theme of "Climate of Change"?
Drawing requires a quality of attention that increases our awareness of ourselves and the world around us. It creates a quiet, still space, free from distractions. The Big Green Drawing Challenge is intended to encourage participants to develop a deeper connection with themselves and the natural world through the process of drawing.
"I find drawing really helps me to deepen my relationship with my subject and through drawing something, giving it that undivided attention, I somehow develop a level of intimacy, interest, knowledge and care for it that probably wouldn’t have been there before I drew it (I really love my house plants - they are very well cared for - they have my drawing practice to thank for this!). Drawing is about being fully there, and seeing without judgement what is truly there. It’s quite an overwhelming feeling when you really connect with the absolute pure beauty and intelligence of nature. And we’re all part of it, that natural energy force, that is us, we are it (although often we mistakenly think we are far superior to it) so I think that the more people draw nature, the more they’ll be humbled by it’s intelligence and grow to really appreciate it, love it and therefore want to protect it and care for it." (Marigold the Maker - extract from an interview with The Big Draw - click here to read the full interview.
Why do this with me?
In January 2018, I set the intention to draw every day to improve my drawing skills. I soon noticed that drawing daily not only improved my ability to see and draw, but I began to feel more connected to the still point inside me, I was able to hear my intuition more easily - to know and respond to my needs. I also noticed that the process of observing natural objects gave me more time and space to fully appreciate their beauty, intelligence and sheer miracle existence. I noticed that I felt more connected to nature, more part of it and developed a much deeper love and appreciation for not only it's aesthetic beauty but for all that it gave me.
Through drawing daily I not only felt more confident to draw but also experienced a sense of stillness, peace, gratitude and deeper connection to the natural object I was drawing. I knew that others wanted and needed to draw more and make time for stillness and connection with nature in their lives so for the past two years I've created and run 5 month-long online drawing challenges and facilitated over 1000 people in their quest to draw more. Here's what some of them have to say:
"I would recommend this challenge for anybody! I have become confident and more relaxed with drawing and painting and have finally become the artist I've always wanted to be, making sketches everyday from beautiful intriguing things I see and then using them in my paintings and designs." Julia Bevan
“The drawing challenge and the guidance from Marigold gave me something to look forward to everyday. It allowed me to improve my drawing skills and to see it as a craft that you have to work on. The community aspect of the challenge is so inspiring and I tried so many things thanks to that. Highly recommend!” Floriane-Marielle Job
“The drawing challenge helped me get back into drawing and I got inspired by other people's work to use different media and styles. It's a friendly and supportive community that gives me the confidence to try new things and share work. Thank you Marigold for organising it and keeping us going!” Emmy Pham
Drawing daily for a month is no mean feat and involves a surprising amount of organisation, grit and resilience but don't worry, you'll be in safe hands and we will make sure we have some fun along the way!
I hope that The Big Green Drawing Challenge first and foremost allows you to create time on a daily basis in which you can connect with yourself and your environment and in doing so, deepen your relationship with nature and appreciate the gifts it gives to human kind.
A message from The Big Draw Director, Kate Mason on The Big Green Draw Festival Theme: "A Climate of Change":
"2020 marks the 20th anniversary of The Big Draw and the campaign which shines a light on the need for drawing – making a mark with meaning – and its role as a tool for expression, creativity, learning and sharing ideas. Drawing – in all its forms, helps us make sense of a rapidly changing world around us. It is a global language which cuts across all barriers of culture, race and identity. In this special anniversary year, it is apt that we, alongside many other voices, also lend our own voice to help increase awareness and understanding of the emergency situation unfolding across all ecosystems. This universal language of drawing is the perfect narrator helping to document, report and share thinking around the seismic shifts taking place in our society."
Challenge Features and Benefits:
Daily Emails from Marigold packed full of encouragement, guidance and support so you feel motivated to get on the page and stay on the page throughout October
Weekly Live Drawing Events with advice and drawing tuition to help your ability to see and draw
Printable Challenge Welcome Pack guiding you through a creative process to help design a challenge that suits your individual needs and interests.
Discount Codes for the two live online ticketed events - "Mono Printing Masterclass" and "Make Your Own Ink"
Thriving Online Community of like-minded people cheering each other on through the ups and downs of the challenge
Learn and be inspired - pick up and share drawing and sustainable living tips
Make Time To Draw Daily connect with yourself and the environment
Learn Lasting Techniques to help you embed healthy routines and habits that nourish yourself and the environment.
This challenge is now closed for new participants - click below to subscribe and be the first to know about the next one!
Do I need to be tech savvy to be able to access the challenge?
Not at all, on purchasing a place on the challenge you'll receive an email with a downloadable Welcome Pack and links to join the online community. All you need is access to email - Facebook, Instagram and Zoom are all optional but not essential. If you have any technical problems just email me and I'll do my best to help you within 24 hours.
Do I need to be good at drawing to enjoy the benefits of the challenge?
No previous drawing experience is necessary. The focus and benefits of the challenge come from being absorbed in the process of drawing and trying not to have any attachment or judgement about the outcome. We're a friendly, supportive drawing community and there's no pressure to produce good drawings - as the saying goes: "the only bad drawing is the one you didn't do".
Do I have to share my drawings with the group?
The answer is no but I would encourage you to because not only does it increase the likelihood of you completing the challenge but it also quietens the inner critic - the first is the worst but it does get less excruciating the more you do it and you may be surprised by how much positive feedback you get from the group.
Testimonials from August Still Point Sketching Challenge participants:
"I restarted drawing, after many years without, through the May challenge. The August challenge was just the right timing to give me a boost. The encouragement and friendly
advice from the group is invaluable." Pauline Laing
"I have had such fun joining in the August drawing challenge. Settling into mindfully creating has been a meditation in itself. I joined because I knew it would be a way of connecting with others ; making virtual friends, as it were, plus learning from others." Soo Allan
"It was so much fun to rediscover the joy of drawing. Being part of the online group was inspiring. Everybody was so supportive and it was wonderful to see the work of others. It gave me many more ideas to explore and I learned a lot from it." Marion Ooijevaar