On my first day in Melbourne, I went on a free tour of the city. These are offered twice a day in both Sydney and Melbourne and are run by donation. A tour guide meets up with anybody who would like to join at a meeting point in the CBD, and takes them on a walking tour of the city, speaking about the cities history, culture, nightlife, and so on. Although I lived in Sydney for two months and didn’t get around to doing the walking tour there, I figured that because I only had a week in Melbourne, a walking tour would be a great introduction to set the tone for my time there.

On the tour, I met a guy named Matt, who is a local “Melburnian” and was training up to become one of the guides. It was great to walk around the city, have him share his own interests, perspectives and experiences of living in the city. One of Matt’s interests is illustrating, and he has a pretty sweet Instagram account accordingly (username mattaburrasaurus).

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Being on my new skill-seeking mission, when Matt suggested we go to this comedy gig one evening, I accepted and invited myself over to his flat two hours earlier so that he could teach me the art of drawing – pun intended😉 I know that it takes ages to develop this skill, something which can’t possibly be taught in an hour or two, but I was intrigued by his talent nonetheless and thought it would be a nice addition to this list.

Like I am discovering with many other skills, drawing has a lot to do with the mind; overcoming the limits we put on our own. I learned two very interesting things from Matt during the evening:

  1. When drawing, there can be a significant difference between a warm-up sketch and a cool-down sketch. If you draw something in 30 secs at the beginning of a session, and that same thing 30 secs at the end, the latter can be very different to the former. It makes sense logically, across a range of activities, but was really interesting for me to see this in practice.
  2. Matt said that one thing that can get in the way of the natural flow of drawing is when one thinks (overthinks) about the shade/pressure that they want to achieve when using a pencil. If you overthink your pressure/shading, then this can disrupt the creative flow so to speak. He eradicates this by using one of those multi-coloured pencils so that he has no way of controlling “what comes out,” and therefore naturally stops wasting any distracting energy on this  (And the multi-coloured drawings look pretty damn cool too!)