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Meet the NSCAD student who co-organizes a local pub drawing night

On a quiet night in February, a handful of students met at the Split Crow pub, put their art supplies on the table and spent the evening drawing together.

It was the first session of the creative student-led social, started by Deirdre Sokolowska, an Interdisciplinary Arts student, along with fellow student Saba Blyden-Taylor. Sokolowska is an illustrator and filmmaker who runs their own small business and sells their work online and at a handful of local shops.

They started the pub drawing night to bring students together after the solitude of the pandemic.

“The pandemic hit in the middle of my second semester during NSCAD, so I had a pretty lonely start. It felt like there weren’t a lot of community events happening. Everyone was burnt out and focused on getting through the week most days. Coming back to in-person classes, I didn’t want to go back to the way things were,” Sokolowska says.

They plan to make this a monthly event. Having spaces outside of classes for students to meet and hang out is important, they say, especially for new students.

“I think clubs and low-key events like this help folks feel involved and like they are getting the most out of their time at art school.”

They also plan to host off campus art shows and a club fundraiser to support this club, and others they are involved with. Sokolowska also runs weekly screenings for The Midnight Film Society and organizes the Zine Rack at the NSCAD Art Store.

“I think students want to do a lot more community events but, there isn’t necessarily the space or the funds. Hopefully, a fundraiser might facilitate that. I am grateful that The Split Crow is allowing us to host this event for free.”

Drink and Draw is not exclusive to NSCAD students. Anyone that is 19+ can come hang out and draw. All you need to bring is your own art supplies. The next event is on Monday, March 7 at the Split Crow.

You can find Deirdre on Instagram @unwashedace