When I lived in Madrid in 2007 (my goodness has it really been so long ago!!), I took up Aikido. It was surprisingly relaxing as the movements in Aikido are designed to use minimal energy by using the opponents momentum against them.
Sadly, when I left Madrid, I didn’t keep the art up, but I did pick up a really magnificent book Aikido and the Dynamic Sphere, which is illustrated by Oscar Ratti and I occasionally pick it up to marvel at the illustrations.
With limited time tonight and Elena too exhausted to join me in art making, I needed a quick draw for a survey post and decided I might try one of Oscar Ratti’s illustrations.
Turns out that, though it looked simple and effortless, it actually took a great deal of time and concentration to get right.
A bit like Aikido really.
With the diagrams being for instruction, they had to not only be anatomically correct, but also dynamic and clear. I had to do lots of construction lines to ensure I got the right proportions and angles and at every layer I realised that Mr Ratti had mastered his art quite thoroughly. The angles and lines were immaculate.
Turns out that Oscar Ratti is not only a commercial illustrator but also a Greco-Roman wrestling champion and Aikido instructor in New York, and this discipline comes across really well in his drawings.
After trying this out, I feel like Oscar Ratti and Adele Westbrook have, for a fleeting moment, been my personal sensei in the dojo of my envelope