Guildford Borough has been taking part in The Big Draw Festival since 2012; it is unsurprising that after six years’ worth of experience coordinating an abundance of successful Big Draw events and workshops, this year is shaping up to be another unmissable Big Draw Bonanza...
Last year, Guildford's Big Draw Festival events engaged over 400 people of all ages in a series of experimental creative arts and craft activities. This year’s events will wholeheartedly embrace our theme of ‘Play’, offering free, accessible, high quality and creative activities run in partnership with local arts practitioners and venues. As always, these workshops are open to those who love to draw, as well as those who think they can’t!
The programme will consist of 10 workshops over the course of the The Big Draw Festival month, all of which will be taking place in a variety of exciting venues such as The Boileroom and Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, as well as a handful of outdoor settings like the inspiring Lakeside Nature Reserve and tranquil Newlands Corner – which marks the start of Guildford’s events. Whether you’re interested in learning a new technique, improving an existing skill or just having fun and meeting people in a creative and non-judgmental environment, the Guildford Big Draw Festival will have something for you.
The first of Guildford’s Big Draw events will be an alfresco drawing activity held on Sunday the 7th of October, run by artist Jane Ponsford. Those taking part will get the chance to embrace autumn and have fun making their own drawing utensils and experimenting with natural materials such as oak gull and colourful bark inks to create artworks that take inspiration from the beautiful surrounding Surrey Hills landscape. This playful approach to the practice of drawing will be a fantastic kick-start to Guildford’s Big Draw Festival, and an inspiring opportunity to enjoy getting creative, play and invent in the great outdoors.
Guildford’s workshops continue their playful themes through activities such as Spin Paintings with Flora Gare at The Watt’s Gallery on the 14 October.
Guildford Cathedral will make a particularly impressive and inspiring setting for creating your very own ‘stained-glass’ effect drawing with collage on the 24th, Guildford’s penultimate #Play2018 event will unfold with your help at G Live with an evolving collaborative experimental drawing studio led by artist Nicole Line on 27 October.
If you are feeling a little dizzy from all the spinning and rolling, or you’re simply craving a chance to go ‘back to basics’, then you can join local artists on a Draw and Explore activity on Sunday 21 October, in which you’ll learn some key lessons on mark making and observational drawing. The day will begin in The Boileroom, where you can warm up, meet your fellow explorers, and learn some basic drawing skills before picking up a map and embarking upon a self-guided drawing tour around town. The result will be a collaborative visual journey of Guildford, presented across the walls of the The Boileroom. In the likely event that you are left hungry for more, you can hang around for the evening’s Drink and Draw workshop (for over 18’s only). From artistic pros to first timers, everyone is welcome to get creative, and to socialise, in a non-pressure environment, with a drink in hand!
If your interests lie more within textiles and costume design, then make sure not to miss the final Guildford Big Draw event on Sunday the 28th, taking place in Surrey Arts Wardrobe. Here you can expect to get involved in life drawing sessions, and well and truly celebrating The Big Draw Festival #Play2018 theme by rummaging around their costume collection and reimagining outfits for characters from your favourite stories, with the expert help and guidance of industry professionals.
The workshops are open to anyone and everyone wishing to have fun and unleash their creative side. Remember, its all about ‘drawing to learn, not learning to draw’.
Written by: Matilda Barratt
Guildford Borough Council are Big Draw Festival 2018 Sponsor Partners.
Take part in their fantastic, free #Play2018 Big Draw Festival events across Guildford 7 – 28 October! A link to their full programme can be found here.
Interested in visiting a Big Draw Festival event near you this Autumn? Take a look at our Big Draw 2018 events map here, sign up to our localised event alerts here or perhaps you’d like to join our merry band of Big Draw Festival co-creators and organise your very our events?
Visit our Organise an Event page for guidance on getting started.