Ryan Brom finds solace in drawing


Ryan Brom

Ever since discovering his passion at Goodwillie Environmental School, freshman Ryan Brom has found drawing to be a relaxing hobby.

At Goodwillie Environmental School, freshman Ryan Brom found more to the curriculum than simply nature.

During 5th and 6th grade, Ryan and his classmates would craft paintings each time they learned about a new artist. Eventually, he found that drawing was even better for him through phenology: the study of biological events and cycles. 

“We’d go outside and study our surroundings,” Ryan said. “Sometimes I’d draw something, and then, later, I’d get home and draw in more detail. I’d capture the picture in my mind.”

At Goodwillie, they did many drawings and paintings, and Ryan first discovered his affinity for art in 5th grade. Ever since, he has been drawing nearly once or twice a week. However, he used to have much more time to devote to drawing. These days, he occasionally ends up starting a drawing—which usually takes an hour or two—one day but not finishing it for a week.

Nevertheless, Ryan still makes time for it.

“[Drawing is] pretty fun,” Ryan said. “I enjoy it. It’s kind of relaxing, and it helps me focus.”

In the time since he attended Goodwillie, Ryan hasn’t taken any art classes, except Photography, which he took in middle school. Surprisingly, he also doesn’t plan to take any throughout high school, nor does he wish to pursue it in college or as a career. Instead, he “just [likes] to do it as a hobby.”

Without classes to guide him, Ryan has learned on his own as the years pass.

“[By drawing for fun], I’ve learned more techniques, how to do more detail, and focus on one part,” Ryan said.

Over time, he has found that making use of different shades of graphite pencils based on their darkness and thickness has really amplified his drawing skills. Other than that, he has discovered planning out with a light sketch works best for him.

“I think that, at first, it’s definitely [important to focus on] the shape of whatever you’re drawing,” Ryan said. “Once you have that first shape, [you’re good to go]. It’s kind of important to have; otherwise, it turns into a flying sock or something.”

From there, Ryan typically transitions to adding the depth and details—which would usually mean adding feathers since he mostly draws birds, specifically birds of prey. 

“[Birds of prey are] big, and I like all the detail they have,” Ryan said, “and it’s easy to get focused on one part of it.”

Ryan doesn’t particularly favor drawing one bird over the other, though he does enjoy drawing hawks and golden eagles. In addition to birds, Ryan likes drawing cars. However, illustrating people is not his cup of tea. 

“[Drawing people is] definitely not my best,” Ryan said. “That does not turn out right. For me, eyes are pretty difficult, but they’re kind of easier for me in birds than in people because the centering of them is really difficult for me.”

Because of this, besides cars, Ryan sticks to drawing birds “because of how they fly and how they move is kind of intriguing.”

Other than drawing, Ryan does paint on occasions. Though, he paints much less compared to drawing, which he prefers. With drawing often, the amount of sketches has been piling up, so he keeps them in a big folder. The others go on his wall.

“I usually [put] my better ones [up on the wall],” Ryan said, “the ones I spend more time on and put more detail and more effort into [are the drawings] I put up.”

With many sketches showcasing his passion, Ryan clearly enjoys drawing. When he draws, he “[feels] relaxed and relieved of stress,” but the end result brings just as much—if not more—gratification.

“I like how it looks and how it feels to draw,” Ryan said, “and I like the final product. That always makes me feel satisfied.”