Art Challenge

Week 8 beginning Monday 22 June

One drawing a week:

Overlapping shapes – abstract still life

  1. Either arrange some objects on a table, so that they partly overlap each other as you look at them, or choose a section of a room or space outdoors, where you can see objects, cars, buildings in front of each other.
  2. Using a pencil, draw just the outlines of the objects, but draw the whole outline as though the objects were all transparent. If they’re on a table, include the line of the table-top. Once you’re happy with the outlines, go over them in a black felt pen.

         3. Then using any media you choose, add flat colour to each section; this means no shading, just a block of colour. You might leave some sections white to add contrast. For added emphasis and impact, once the sections are coloured in, you might make selected outlines thicker than the rest:

TIP: If you’re using thin paper like copier/printer paper and felt pens, rest your sheet on several others below: felt pens are likely to ‘bleed’ through the thin paper and this will protect whatever you’re leaning on, and also give you a second artwork from the ‘ghosted’ image:


One drawing a day:

Each day, repeat the same method but choose a different group of objects, different media or different colours.

Day 2: use tones of just one colour – eg different blues or reds. Day 3: use two harmonious colours: yellow & orange, or orange & red, red & purple, purple & blue, blue & green or green & yellow. Day 4 using three colours. Day 5: use as many different colours as you can.

Most of all, have fun and send in photos of the results!

Week 7 beginning Monday 15 June

One drawing a week:

This week is a really fun challenge: 

  1. Using something light coloured like a highlighter, a felt pen, coloured pencil, watercolour paint or even just a blob of coffee – draw some random shapes on a sheet of paper, with spaces between them. 
  2. Then colour the blobs in…

        3. Once the blobs are dry, use a black felt pen, fine liner or biro to make the blobs into different objects, characters and faces with funny features:

        4. As an extra challenge, once you’ve made the blobs into figures – write a short funny story that includes all the pictures… How on earth did this guy rescue his neighbour’s cat that fell down a well using a baby’s knitted boot and a piece of cheese? And where did the watermelon come in? Or did someone mistake the watermelon for the cat?

wk 7 week II - blob


One drawing a day:

Each day, repeat the same method, but choose a different colour for the blobs each day: Monday – orange, Tuesday – green, Wednesday – yellow, Thursday – blue, Friday, pink. 

Write a short funny story for each set of blob pictures.


Week 6 beginning Monday 8 June

One drawing a week:

Many of us find it difficult making a ‘realistic’ drawing of objects and scenes around us; we can feel disappointed and give up because we think we’re ‘not good at drawing’. A technique artists often use to help them, is looking at the ‘negative space’ between things… instead of focusing attention on the things we want to draw, focus on the shapes of the gaps between them; for example, the shape of the sky between tall buildings, or the shape of the area around a plant. 


Here are a couple of examples:

wk 6 negative space I

wk 6 negative space II

When you’re doing a drawing, changing your focus of attention really alters how you approach what you draw and brings a very different perspective. It can also take away some anxiety about doing ‘a good drawing’.

Two parts to this week’s challenge: 

  1. First make a drawing of a wall in your home: but just draw the negative space of the wall –  focus on the shape of the gaps between objects, framed by the ceiling and floor and corners of the wall.
  2. Next select some bits from the kitchen – fresh veg, tins, a bottle or two, and arrange them on the table, so you create a group: have some objects overlap each other a bit,


One drawing a day:

Each day, choose a different area of your home – a windowsill, a bedside cabinet, kitchen table, and draw the negative spaces created by the objects there. You could open a kitchen cabinet and draw the negative space inside or arrange different objects on the table each day – some overlapping and some separate, and just draw the negative space. Date and sign each sketch and give it a title.

You can also turn the negative space into a pattern or design.

W6 Negative space day

Week 5 beginning Monday 1 June

One drawing a week:

For some of us, the lockdown is beginning to relax, we can spend more time out of doors; if you have a garden or allotment, perhaps you’ve been outside a lot over the last weeks. 

For this week’s challenge: draw a tree or plant outside that you notice. If you prefer, you could stay indoors and draw an indoor plant or a tree you can see from the window. 

Do it mindfully – people sometimes say they can’t draw trees very well – it’s all about looking – pay attention to the overall shape, how it grows, the direction the leaves grow, the shapes of the branches – some hang down, some grow tight to the trunk, some divide freqently. It would be difficult to draw every leaf and branch, so look carefully before you begin to draw. What shape is the whole tree? Does it lean in one direction? Is it windblown or crowded by other trees or free to spread? Is the trunk smooth like a lime tree or grooved and gnarled like oak? 

If the whole tree feels overwhelming, try with just a leaf – a close up, or simply the overall outline. Try several different approaches.

Date and sign the page afterwards.

Here are a couple of examples drawn in biro pen:

Pen drawing

Pen drawing IIOne Drawing Challenge

One drawing a day:

Each day, draw a different plant either a houseplant in your home or a tree outside. See if you can name or find out the names of the different plants and their country of origin.


Week 4 beginning Monday 18 May

One drawing a week:

Remember when we used to travel?

Create a ‘collage’ compilation page of drawings/sketches from a particular holiday: it can be anything, you don’t have to draw the whole photograph, it might be a seagull that was just in the camera view, your fish & chips, a flipflop, yourself. Write a title around each section and draw lines around to pull them together.

Date and sign the page afterwards.

Here’s an example:

One drawing a day:

Each day, do a ‘collage’ page of sketches/drawings – choose a different holiday each day.

Alternatives: you could also compose an itinerary of places, landmarks you would like to visit once we’re able to travel.

If you do some drawing that you would like us to see ahead of time, send it to this email address:

Week 3 beginning Monday 11 May

One drawing a week:

Draw something that you’re watching on TV/video game/ computer… Do several pages of these drawings… don’t stop or pause the TV, just try to draw while it’s still running… it can seem really hard, but once you get going it’s really fun! Mostly, you only get brief sketches, but you can fill a whole page with half-drawn pictures which becomes a great piece of work in itself.

Date and sign the page afterwards.

One drawing a day:

Repeat Monday’s exercise each day this week – set aside half an hour in front of the TV/computer/video game and just draw what’s on.. without pausing the screen! It’s fun to share what you’ve drawn – take a snap on your phone and email to David for uploading onto the school blog. 

Here’s an example: I was watching a show with sheep in a vineyard…

Television drawing

If you do some drawing that you would like us to see ahead of time, send it to this email address:

Week 2 beginning Monday 4 May

One drawing a week:

Draw the contents of your bag

Empty your rucksack/handbag/school bag onto the table, now draw the contents. 

Try this: do a continuous line drawing – once your pen/pencil touches the paper, don’t lift it off the paper until you have finished the drawing! You can run the pen/pencil back over a line, or several passes back and forth creating a beautiful lose, multilayered drawing.

Once you’ve done that, you can add more details and comments or titles onto the page. 

Then date and sign your drawing.

Here’s an example:

Continuous line drawing

One drawing a day:

Tuesday: Do a continuous line drawing of a cup or mug

Wednesday: Do a continuous line drawing of something on the kitchen counter

Thursday: Do a continuous line drawing of a dog or cat – use a picture if you don’t have a pet

Friday: Do a continuous line drawing of your favourite meal

If you do some drawing that you would like us to see ahead of time, send it to this email address:

Week beginning 20th April

Part 1

One drawing a week:

Draw something you can see from a window in your home – looking out from a window, what do you see? Choose one part of the view to draw – not the whole thing: it might be a tree, a post-box, a garage. Just focus on one part of the view.

When you’ve finished, write the date, the time and your name, as a record of the drawing.

Part 2

One drawing a day:

Draw the same view every day on Monday to Friday, but vary it – draw the same thing but at a different time of day: 9am, 11am, 1pm, 3pm, 6pm. Claude Monet did this when he painted haystacks – he did the same thing at different times of day to see how the light and colour change

If you do some drawing that you would like us to see ahead of time, send it to this email address: