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Some of my earliest memories are of drawing. I drew with a stick in the dirt. I drew in the wet sand on the beaches of Okanagan Lake. Most days after school I drew on my grandfather’s thin yellow typing paper with a stubby pencil and an eraser that did not erase. I used leftover blackboard chalk on the schoolyard pavement. At night I drew all over my bedroom walls. Every inch of those walls were covered with lines, squiggles and circles. I needed to draw. And draw I did.

Thinking back to my university days I often picked up the rhythm of the professor’s voice during lectures. My hand would sub consciously grasp a pen. The lines would flow. My lecture notes and the pages of the text book soon filled with definite, contour lines from somewhere deep inside the recesses of my mind. I am not sure where they came from but there was a need to make marks on a white surface. Maybe, just maybe these lines made me see what the professor was saying. It was the process that was important.

David Hockney, the British artist, once said “Drawing makes you see things clearer, and clearer and clearer still, until your eyes ache.” Hockey’s words resonate with me. My drawings do make me see things more clearly. I often sat in the garden my husband took exceptional care of and slowly and deliberately drew the lines of flowers. My contour lines became an exercise of intense concentration and observation. When I followed along the outer edges of the petals and stems my mind became quickly meditative. My breathing changed. And following Hockey’s thinking my eyes could ache after I had finished a large drawing with definite lines and spaces. The following drawings represent an example of this type of meditative contour drawing that will become a tool that I could then take to my large scale oil paintings of gardens.