Poppy Chancellor

The Drawing Year 2010
BA Illustration, Kingston University

When I found out about The Drawing Year I thought it sounded too good to be true. The course was brilliant, but not what I expected. It really focused on what it meant to be an artist on a personal level. 

The courses combined with the tutoring allowed for a deeper understanding about my work that transformed my outlook on my practice and the world around me. It was a brand new way of seeing that I found exhilarating, exhausting and engaging. 

The fact that I learned so much at the same time as being respected as an artist and valued as a person was a new experience for me. The tutors are excellent and created a safe environment to try new things without being self-conscious about the work you produced. 


The whole year amounted to a breakthrough in being playful and doing things that scare you. I never took chances with my work before The Drawing Year. 

I have a clearer understanding of what I want to do now and how to do it. Even drawings from my imagination have a foundation of understanding that wasn't there before. My work is convincing and has a natural ease that comes with the rigorous practice you get on The Drawing Year.

The other students from my year are now my colleagues and best friends. The tutors are my absolute heroes!

I still draw regularly and go to the Drawing at The British Museum class every Friday.

I am now working as a free-lance illustrator and papercut artist, and my designs have a dynamism that is based in a familiarity and love of drawing. I have the freedom to communicate visually through my understanding of drawing which can be rare in commercial art. I am also a tutor with The Drawing Clubs, which has been one of the best experiences of my life, not only professionally but personally. Understanding that you can be of service to young people and make a contribution to them as artists is really exciting. 

Poppy Chancellor