Drawing happy at the New York Poetry Festival

3 Aug

This past weekend, I was at the first annual New York Poetry Festival in Governors Island, which showcased the different formats, aesthetics, and personalities of New York City’s reading series and collectives. As a volunteer, I helped paint acrylic ravens on parasols designed by Kate Russell.

During slow sales, I asked some people to draw what makes them happy. The first one, Ned, called me out and asked why I haven’t drawn my own happiness when I’ve asked so many others. Ha. Good point. I said I’ll draw my happiness if he would draw his. And so, on the spot, this is what I drew:

Happiness according to me
“Being in airy high places, love and being loved back, friends, being lost in a good book, letters, parasols, coffee, clouds and more clouds, kickpads, breaking boards with my feet, tomatoes, making things with clay, sailboats, genuinely nice people, nice hats, mermaids, unicorns, dinosaurs, cake, fresh flowers, butterflies.”


Catherine Young

28 years old
writer, visual artist, interaction designer
SVA grad student
Manila, Philippines
New York, NY, USA
Barcelona, Spain

About my drawing
I was painting parasols and helping to sell T-shirts at a poetry festival. I was with the rest of the merchandising team and volunteers. And man, was it hot.

And here’s Ned with a big satisfied smile, holding up my drawing:

You’ll see his drawing next.

Other people were also nice enough to draw. Here’s my friend Kate:

That was a fun weekend; I asked people to write poetry on origami cranes, too.

Thanks to Isaiah, who wrote this incredible poem:

The wild birds
Brighten the
setting sky,
Their wings
eat the
shadowed wind
and soar
to the
next sun.

More posts to come! And for New Yorkers who missed the festival, make sure to check it out next year. It’s such a wonderful thing to happen for the New York poetry scene. Visit the website of the New York Poetry Society. The New York Poetry Festival was co-founded by the indefatigable Stephanie Berger and Nicholas Adamski.

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2 Responses to “Drawing happy at the New York Poetry Festival”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. DrawHappy, One Year Later « DrawHappy - January 2, 2012

    […] One should participate and not just observe one’s projects. I drew my own happiness, too!  It also inspired a lot of sketching projects, such as this and now this. It has […]

  2. DrawHappy, One Year Later « The Perceptionalist - January 2, 2012

    […] One should participate and not just observe one’s projects. I drew my own happiness, too!  It also inspired a lot of sketching projects, such as this and now this. It has […]

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