Come together and Draw with Rob.
You may have heard of the #DrawWithRob online art lessons led by children’s author & illustrator Rob Biddulph which have been captivating kids and parents around the world during lockdown. The classes have racked up 3m+ participants and counting so far, and today the project is aiming to go one step further by breaking the Guinness World Record for largest ever online art lesson. Woah.
ArtWorldRecords – conceived by talent investor Entrepreneur First in partnership with Rob and supported by publisher HarperCollins – is hoping to attract 10,000 participants to make history from home. It’s free to join for parents and kids with businesses being encouraged to donate towards high-impact Covid-19 charities.
"I was approached by the team at Art World Records who needed someone to be the face (or the hands!) of their attempt at the largest ever online art lesson," Rob tells Digital Arts. "Due to the popularity of my #DrawWithRob videos (around 14 million impressions on YouTube so far) I guess I was a good fit.
"They wanted to organise an event that brings people together, and art – drawing in particular – is a great way to do that. It’s also something that is great for mental health, so (it's perfect) for it to be happening in Mental Health Awareness Week. Personally, I find that I enter an almost meditative state when I draw. I can just switch of the part of my brain that is thinking about all the difficulties and problems, and focus on the sketch. In these strange and stressful times I firmly believe that it can be a real balm for people."
Being a Guinness geek, it didn't take much convincing for Rob to take part.
"I loved reading The Guinness Book of Records as a kid," he reveals. "We used to get a copy every year for Christmas. I was also an avid viewer of Record Breakers, hosted by Roy Castle. I never dreamed I’d ever have a chance of breaking a record myself, so I’m super-excited about today!"
But how will Rob's session get masses of people to come together and smash the record, regardless of artistic prowess?
“The way that I teach people to draw my characters means that everyone, regardless of their artistic ability, always ends up with something that they're really proud of," Rob explains. "I believe that everyone can draw, it’s just that sometimes people need a little help with the order to do the drawing in. That’s where I come in.
"What’s really important for this record attempt is that we need everyone to stay with me for the full half an hour, otherwise they won’t count towards the final total. I honestly don’t think that will be difficult. It’ll be a very enjoyable lesson, I promise. Plus you’ll get to see your very own masterpiece slowly reveal itself in front of your eyes. And then, at the end of it all, you will (hopefully) be a record breaker. As Roy Castle himself famously said, a little bit of dedication is all you need…"
The record-breaking attempt will take place online via Rob Biddulph’s YouTube live stream channel on 21st May at 4pm BST (8am PST).
For parents and children who want to take part in making history from home, register for free now at www.artworldrecords.com