Drawn poetry and other stuff about drawing

I was recently asked to contribute to Drawn Poetry 2020, an international project launched by Isabel Carmona and Jeffrey de Bruin. Contributing artists are creating a postcard with an original image on one side and the accompanying poem on the other. I chose one that brings tears to my eyes every time I read it — In Flanders Fields by Canadian poet, soldier and physician John McCrae. The postcards (hopefully over 100 in all) will be printed as boxed sets and also exhibited when the pandemic is over. As well, the original postcards will be sold to raise funds for Medicins Sans Frontiers. The poppies are still a few weeks away from blooming here, but I had some photos that I took last year, so I used those as reference.

A few other nice bits that you might be interested in reading: an article about a the benefits of drawing by a man who has drawn the dish rack in his kitchen over 1000 times, and an article about a woman who learned to draw as a way to engage in a more meaningful way with the world around her. Both of these are in the NY Times, but even if you don’t have a subscription, you can still read a few free articles every month.

36 Comments on “Drawn poetry and other stuff about drawing”

  1. sharon chapman says:

    Beautiful and yes I cry when I hear that poem.


  2. Barbara Beynon says:

    I love pairings of painting and poems, especially when one is inspired by the other. In Mendocino, CA every October, the Artist’s Co-op Gallery has a show, “Ekphrasis” in which local writers and artists are paired and create pieces based on the other’s poem/story or painting. The pairing are “blind” which makes it even more interesting; the participants discover who inspired their work at the opening exhibit. This year’s will be the 9th Annual Ekphrasis exhibit. A request: could you let us know when the postcards become available? Doctors without Borders is a terrific organization and I really like postcards, too.
    Thanks for all of your wonderful postings during this time of staying in place. The evolution of the countertop series has been an inspiration.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Doug Elliot says:

    It is beautiful Shari, a wonderful composition.


  4. Denise says:

    This painting is such a compliment to the touching poem.


  5. Geraldine Dunne says:

    What a wonderful idea!
    Love your poppies and the poem. Both favorites!


  6. Pastor Cathy says:

    Drawn poetry and other stuff about drawing
    you can still read a few free articles every month.


  7. Mary B. says:



  8. joantav says:

    Lovely and going to a worthy cause too!


  9. -N- says:

    Well done, and well said for today as well as 100+ years ago.


  10. Laurie says:

    Thank you for sharing your art (always), this project and the other links.


  11. All very interesting. Thanks for sharing, and for the NYT articles. I know I end the day in a better mood if I have drawn/painted that day.


  12. John says:

    By Carl Sandburg

    Pile the bodies high at Austerlitz and Waterloo.
    Shovel them under and let me work—
    I am the grass; I cover all.

    And pile them high at Gettysburg
    And pile them high at Ypres and Verdun.
    Shovel them under and let me work.
    Two years, ten years, and passengers ask the conductor:
    What place is this?
    Where are we now?

    I am the grass.
    Let me work.


    • Wow, John, thank you for this. I studied Carl Sandburg poems in college, but had never read this one. So powerful.


      • John says:

        I served for a year and a half in Vietnam in the United States Army. I started off in the infantry. After about 80 days I was transferred to a rear unit but in the meantime I’d seen quite a few interesting things. This poem has always moved me deeply. When I go to Gettysburg, Antietam, or some of the other Civil War battlefields I am usually moved to tears by the sacredness of the place in the solemnity of the area.


  13. Ginny says:

    Your poppies just glow and do tribute to this moving poem. Thank you for sharing this and for supporting such a worthy organization, MSF. I had not thought of painting a poem and now am going to try.


    • Ginny, I thought it was a great project too, and I loved matching the visual to a poem. It was a particularly perfect match since the poet was also a doctor and the project is for MSF.


  14. Stephanie Descoteaux says:

    So classic and complimentary. A lovely project. You are always working on something.


  15. Donna says:

    Beautiful and so touching. My father was WWII so this made me think of him


  16. Trevor Travis says:

    Beautiful painting, beautiful poem.


  17. Laurel says:

    These poppies are stunning! And such a lovely companion to that powerful poem.


  18. Shari, thank you for the McCrae’s delightful poem with your beautiful sketch. Best wishes with this project.


  19. parikhit dutta says:

    Oh the poem and the painting! This is exquisite 🙂


  20. Monique says:

    Love this..and read the first article..so true that art is medicine..I follow this feed on IG Emilie_Joly_Johnson..go see today..poppies galore..Her charmed life w/ famiy in beautiful Provence.


  21. Jane S says:

    Your poppies are gorgeous! So beautifully done! And how touching to pair with this poem. (Am married to a Canadian who memorized this poem in school. He loved your painting too!)


  22. pamlopez15 says:

    I taught this poem to my fourth grade class; I was able to reach some of them, for others, not then. Had I had your sketch to go with it, maybe I’d have had better results!
    Thanks for this beautiful combination, Shari. Yes, it’s most apt on many levels.


  23. I just love these! My favorite poem as well



  24. Gerry says:

    Shari, Your poppies are charming. I love this idea as well as your choice of poetry, one I have always enjoyed. I also wanted to mention what an inspiration that you are drawing your counter everyday. This just shows us that we can use anything for a subject, not wait for the fantastic! Lately I have also been using various medium on one subject – in this case my neighbor’s magnolias. What fun!


  25. Did you have any other ideas that were on the list? Or did you know that you wanted to do Flander’s Field? Just curious, the end result is lovely

    Gertie – My Site


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