Friday, January 21, 2011

The Swimmer

Continuing on with my series of ink drawings depicting my favourite sporting activities, here's a new drawing I completed recently - The Swimmer. I really enjoyed this piece, with the whimsical waves of the water. And also because swimming has come to mean so much to me. My challenge was first, figuring out how to approach a difficult-to-draw subject and today, coming up with a witty title. Alas, nothing of the witty sort came to mind so I've gone with the generic title this time around.

Swimming has been a good friend of mine for some time now. As a child, I feared the water, and begged my parents to remove me from swimming lessons, while I watched my siblings succeed in lessons and enjoy the water. It took until adulthood to overcome my fear - while I was doing my undergrad at UBC. The university's aquatic centre has an amazing indoor and outdoor pool and the facilities are free for student use. I found this out early on in my studies there because of close friends who swam there regularly, and decided I too needed to take advantage. I took a few lessons, spent a few mornings observing the swim team's practice, and after some dedicated practice, became a confident lap swimmer.

Endurance for swimming laps continuously only came over the last few years. When I finally admitted that I needed to actively do something to lose weight, I knew I was too heavy to take up running like I used to when I was younger, healthier, and more fit. So I began with the pool, swimming regularly at UBC, taking advantage of working there and living nearby. Since moving to the North Shore and living incredibly close to a great pool with flexible hours, swimming regularly is now an easy, accessible, and a desirable workout option. It's helped me considerably this past year with surgery recovery, a gentle no-impact workout on a day of tiredness, an evening activity, and now an excellent cross-training option to help me improve my running!

So thanks big bodies of water - you really ain't so scary!


Wendy said...

I love the feeling of the water in this one! You run and swim--have you ever done a triathlon? It's a really fun event that comes in all sorts of lengths to challenge you at every level--all you need is a bike that rolls at least a little bit.

karenquiltz said...

Zahida, I love this and I want to ask your permission to use your art to make a quilted piece. I tried both of your posted email addresses, but they bounced. if you allow me to use your beautiful "Swimmer" as inspiration, I will credit your art on the label and in any show entries. please contact me so I can share some of my work and ideas for this piece. Karen Lambdin