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#PMCreativeChallenge Week 6: Peace Heroes

July 1, 20209:37 amSeptember 28, 2023 9:54 am

This week we will be drawing someone from our lives or history who makes the world a better or more peaceful place.

The Peace Museum has a wonderful collection of paintings and this week we are going to look at this beautiful and thoughtful painting of Pat Arrowsmith by Maggie Glover.

Glover, Margaret; Pat Arrowsmith (b.1930) with Motorbike Helmet; The Peace Museum.

Margaret ‘Maggie’ Glover was a contemporary artist and peace activist who combined her passions of peace to create a socio-historical record of peace activism through her art. Maggie recorded meetings, peace vigils, conferences and anti-war protests throughout her life, depicted in her paintings, drawings and portraits of peace activists.

Pat Arrowsmith was a peace activist, LGBTQ rights and anti-nucelar campaigner, poet, artist and novelist, and led an extraordinary life. Pat co-founded the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) and campaigned throughout her life for a range of issues and served eleven prison sentences, all related to her campaigning activities. Ineligible to claim her father’s inheritance, she married an anarchist poet for a day in order to qualify. She then donated some of the money Gay Pride Week and to Sappho, a lesbian magazine. 

What do portraits tell us?

Portraits usually do more than just tell us what someone looks like, and in Glover’s portrait she includes some special objects to tell us about Arrowsmith’s involvement with peace activism. An artist can also tell the viewer about their subject’s personality through their expression, their clothes and the way they are sitting or standing.

Who would you like to draw a portrait of?

Think of who you might like to draw a portrait of. It could be someone very famous and well known, or it could be a friend, a teacher or someone in your family. Who is the first person that comes into your head?

If it is someone that you know take a photo of them or find one that you already have. If it is someone famous then find a photo online. Or you can work from your memory/imagination!

This week you can choose your own materials!

Today I am working with my favourite material- a pencil. Choose your size of paper and start by drawing a line drawing. When I draw faces I like to start with the features, then the shape of the face, their the hair and then the clothes. Don’t worry about the details to begin with.

I have decided to draw one of my heroes, Margaret McMillan, because of the positive impact she had on the world and her belief that all children deserved to live happy and fulfilled lives. The work she did to make Bradford a more just place for all is featured in The Peace Museum’s Bradford exhibition. 

Margaret McMillan worked in Bradford for several years, including my old primary school, Wapping Road School. She campaigned for improved conditions for some of the poorest children in the city. In Bradford she became a member of the schools board and was highly influential, leading to the cities education system being much improved as a result and the introduction of free school meals.

In the photo that I found of her online I think she has a fierce and determined expression whilst looking kind and caring. Her smart hair and clothes make her look elegant, intelligent and noble. 

Once you are happy with your line drawing add the details. Think about the tones of the skin, the areas of light and dark, the texture of the hair and the fold of the clothes.

Share your portrait with us so we can start our own virtual collection of Peace Heroes at the Peace Museum!

Tag #PMCreativeChallenge on social media or email us [email protected]

Written by Ezra Kingston