A novel way of observing and drawing
Many people think that they can’t draw and that only the ‘gifted’ or talented can draw. This is not the case. I run a facilitated drawing workshop in which this belief is entirely upended and every individual’s potential and ability to draw is realized. Anyone can be guided towards their ability to draw and it continues to be my experience that every person that I have taught can draw and draw well. It is worth remembering that ‘drawing’ is fundamentally the making of marks on paper.
I have developed a novel method of observation and drawing which I teach to people who have never drawn before, including medical students, anatomists and artists. I teach in a workshop environment which is focused, dynamic and fun. The outcome is real learning and growth and a sense of excitement and accomplishment.
Workshop participants will be introduced to the value of observation using a multi-sensory method which crucially involves the sense of touch, sight and the simultaneous act of drawing. We gather a huge amount of information from an object when we explore it through touch, and this information becomes included in our drawing via that marks that we make.
By observing in this way, one is introduced to a more comprehensive perceptual understanding of the physical object being observed. One literally begins to see 'more' of the object, as well as seeing it in a more objective way (i.e. as it really is and not as one imagines it to be).
In this workshop, you will learn to observe an object and draw it on paper, such that your drawing marks correspond with what you are observing. At the same time, your drawing marks will be unique to you in the same way that your handwriting is. Your drawing then, becomes an expression of what you are observing. Each participant will be guided through a series of exercises that will enable them to understand and practice this method. The result is that each participant will be able to observe and draw capably using this approach. But more than this, there are valuable educational and growth benefits.
NOTE: You need absolutely NO drawing experience to participate in any of these short courses or workshops.
The Haptico-Visual Observation and Drawing (HVO&D) Method
Leonard Shapiro is an experienced drawing teacher and skilled workshop facilitator who enjoys facilitating learning, growth and development in others, in the field of observation.
He has developed a multi-sensory observation method, which employs the sense of touch (haptics) as well as sight, with the simultaneous act of drawing (i.e. mark-making). It is called the Haptico-Visual Observation & Drawing (HVO&D) method.
The application of the HVO&D method results in a greatly increased level of observation of the form of a 3-dimensional object, as well as the cognitive memorization of it.
Leonard teaches the HVO&D method at a university level to MBChB students as part of their study of anatomy, to medical professionals as a CPD short-course, to anatomists and to fine art students as part of their drawing program.
Leonard holds a Bachelor of Fine Art (BAFA Honours) degree from the University of Cape Town (UCT) Michaelis School of Fine Art. He also holds a Bachelor of Social Science (BsocSc) degree from UCT.
Observation (HVO&D) workshops for medical students, staff and anatomists. CPD short-courses for medical professionals.
Observation studies of the base of the skull by UCT MBChB students during a 12 day HVO&D workshop.
UCT MBChB students observing the 3D form of a hammer and humerus using the HVO&D method.
Following on from hammer and humerus studies, UCT MBChB students using the HVO&D method to study upper limb prosections, during a 12 day HVO&D workshop.
Collaborative Academic Research
Poster on observational drawing as an educational approach and combining the best of the ORDER (Observe, Reflect, Draw, Edit, Repeat) and HVO&D methods. Presented by Dr Iain Keenan at the Anatomy Society Winter Meeting 2016, King's College, London.
Poster presentation on evaluation of data generated by HVO&D workshops at the School of Medical Education, Newcastle University and the Division of Clinical Anatomy and Biological Anthropology, University of Cape Town. Presented by Dr Iain Keenan, at the Association for Medical Education in Europe (AMEE) Conference, 2017, Helsinki. (Click to open as a pdf).
One day corporate drawing experience of discovery and learning
In order to make this observation and drawing experience available to everyone beyond the university environs, I have designed a One Day Corporate Drawing Workshop. This workshop encapsulates the fundamentals of what I teach, and delivers the same dynamic, educational and fun experience to groups of people who are interested in discovering their innate ability to observe and draw. The proof of this is in the drawings, which the participants take away with them. An additional function of this one day drawing workshop is for each participant to experience what it is like to do something that they never imagined they could do. This experience of surprise is unforgettable. It is very enabling…it enables one to go forward and continue to surprise oneself at one’s ability to discover new ways of accomplishing tasks in the workplace and in everyday life.
This workshop is fully catered with lunch and afternoon tea.
One Day Corporate Drawing Workshop. Maximum number of participants, 14.
Venue 1: The Dakar Room, 6 Spin Street Restaurant, Cape Town
Venue 2: Workshop Room, UCT Hiddingh Campus, Orange Street, Cape Town
Time: 9.00am - 4.30pm
Catering: Lunch and refreshment breaks are fully catered for by 6 Spin Street Restaurant, at either workshop venue.
Enquiries: Please enquire for details by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes for Educators...
Many people hold a firm but entirely misguided belief that they simply cannot 'draw'.
I run facilitated drawing workshops in which this belief is entirely upended and every individual’s potential and ability to draw is realised. The results are surprising and most of the participants are astounded by an ability that they never, ever thought that they had. This workshop sees people achieving results that they never thought that they were capable of.
'Drawing' is fundamentally the making of marks on paper. Drawing is not something that is innate to an elite few. Every single person can draw! The workshops and short courses are aimed equally at the so-called ‘beginner’ as well as people who have drawn previously – including artists and designers. I have successfully run numerous workshops and short courses where the majority of the participants in the workshop had never drawn before.
The workshops and short courses are aimed at anyone wishing to improve their ability to observe an object and draw it – with confidence. Participants will discover that they can observe much more detail in an object, and consequently draw the object with confidence.
It has been my experience that everyone without exception who has attended this workshop has discovered that they can draw. Each participant has surprised him or herself. Above all, this workshop is fun and invigorating.
I also design customised drawing programmes which can be provided on an individual or on a group workshop basis. The drawing programme caters to a learner’s specific needs. After a consultation with the learner(s), their challenge is identified and a drawing workshop programme is designed in order to address these challenges. Throughout the drawing programme, the learners are assisted on a group as well as an individual basis.
Observational drawing. Object drawing.
This involves guiding the student through a process designed to enable them to observe an object and draw it such that it reflects what they are observing. This does not mean that they will render a ‘copy’ of the object, but rather that they will draw the object as they have understood its 3D structure.
It is for this reason that botanical drawings of a flower are made rather than photographs taken of it. More reliable visual information of the structure and details of the flower can be captured through drawing than through a photograph of it. The same can be said for anatomical drawings; more detail of the structure and details of an upper-limb can be gained through a drawing, rather than from a photograph.
Medical application of drawing: Understanding the form and structure of an anatomical part
"Let someone say of a doctor that he really knows his physiology or anatomy, that he is dynamic - these are real compliments; but if you say he is an observer, a man who really knows how to see, this is perhaps the greatest compliment one can make" - Jean-Martin Charcot.
The goal of teaching drawing to medical students of anatomy is two-fold: 1) to enable the student to understand what she or he is actually looking at, viz. the 3-dimentional structure of a body part and 2) to be able to render a convincing drawing of the body part. These two goals are linked. In teaching anatomical students to understand the shape and detail (the structure) of any anatomical part, I invite them to first feel the object with their eyes closed and only then to look at it and draw it. The reason for feeling the object (such as a vertebra) is to get the information into the memory of the brain. The tips of our fingers contain millions of neural endings and by feeling the object with our fingers, we gain a good sense of its physical shape.
The student becomes aware of undulations, contours and textural details that they were previously unaware of, even though they were looking directly at the object. By ‘looking’ at an object with both the eyes AND the fingers, by exploring the object and gathering information about the object with both the eyes and fingertips, the student gains a vastly more informed picture of the object. As such she or he is able to render a more accurately informed drawing of the object.
After accumulating structural, physical information about the object through drawing it, the student then draws the object while looking at it.
The results are that the student both understands the structure of the object and is able to draw it. In fact, the structure of the object is learned and understood by means of the drawing process.
One Day Corporate Drawing Workshop
The primary function of this one day Corporate Drawing Workshop is for each participant to experience what it is like to do something that they never imagined they could do. This experience of surprise is unforgettable. It is very enabling...it enables one to go forward and continue to surprise oneself at one’s ability to discover new ways of accomplishing everyday as well as new tasks in the workplace and in everyday life.
In essence then, this workshop is more about the participant's experience of surprise at discovering their ability to draw, than about drawing itself.
The means by which I facilitate this process of surprise in the workshop participants is through enabling them to draw an object. So many people imagine that only artists have the ability to draw and that the ability to draw is something that only the 'gifted' are born with. This is completely untrue! I have conducted this workshop many, many times and each participant has discovered that they can draw in a way that they never imagined. This comes as a great surprise to them.
Participants discover their innate and fundamental creative abilities. In these workshops, each participant will surprise themselves by achieving results that they initially thought were completely beyond their ability to achieve. This workshop will expand on each participant's ability to think and act creatively in all aspects of their daily life; at work, at home and at play. The result is that participants experience a renewed confidence and this confidence has obvious benefits on thinking and directed productivity in the workplace. In this drawing workshop, each participant is invited to bring a household tool or cooking implement to the workshop. A number of guided exercises enable the participant to discover abilities and achieve results that will excite and surprise them.
This Drawing Workshop takes place over one full day (9am – 4.30pm). All of the materials that will be used by the participants are provided and morning tea and lunch are catered for. Catering in Cape Town is by 6 Spin Street Restaurant.