Cath Riley and the foundation of every artistic creation…

“I have learned that what I have not drawn, I have never really seen, and that when I start drawing an ordinary thing, I realize how extraordinary it is, sheer miracle.” -Frederick Franck

A pencil and a piece of paper. That is all it needs to transform a two-dimensional surface into a three-dimensional surface. It is a “simple”, yet so fascinating process and is considered to be an artist’s most direct and spontaneous expression.

Catherine Riley, born in 1952 in Keighly (England), manages to create realistic drawings that catches your eye and make it almost impossible to look away. First she became well-known for her 3D art, which was the central part of her artistic creations for a long time. Later on, she started to focus more on pencil drawings and developed new skills, gained new abilities and understandings. Her large-skale drawings focus on the human figure and got more and more attention. Catherines’ art is not only presented in many exhibitions (e.g. North West Art Association, Manchester), even companies like Nike, The New York Times and Aston Martin purchased her unique art pieces.

Drawing on paper only using graphite/pencils is becoming an “extinct” form of art. Back in the day designers, architects and every other creative industry captured their ideas hand-drawn on paper, whereas today it is more common to develop concepts on a tablet. I am very old school when it comes to these things, especially because I love the feeling of graphite on paper and in my opinion drawing on a tablet does not even come close to this experience. Sketching can be a relief for your mind and soul and many people even describe it as a form of therapy. While you are drawing you only focus on one thing and it makes your thoughts go silent, which is important in a restless and multi-tasking world like ours. Graphite art is not as popular/well-known as painting, but it is on the rise again, due to e.g. platforms like Instagram, where hyper realistic drawing has become a big trend.

I want to encourage you to grab a piece of paper and a pencil and to just give it a go. It is not about creating a masterpiece, as I said on my “About me…” page, it is about the flow of creativity and to give your mind a rest during times like this, where technology takes away the beauty and the power of occasional boredom.


This blog is part of the NMIT Blog Network. The articles and comments in this blog are the opinion of the authors and not necessarily those of NMIT.