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Charcoal Wildlife Drawings by Alvin Mark Schroeder

26 May 2007

Following the unfortunate cancellation of the 27 April market - due to rain, Alvin Mark Schroeder was able to demonstrating his craft on 26 May in beautiful sunny weather. Compliments flowed in recognition of Alvin's talent with charcoal and his obviously excellent imagination that flowed onto the canvas with easy strokes of his hand.




with some of his many and

varied charcoal drawings










Gentle mother


powerful hunter










Life of the Koisan


Images of Africa remembered









A steady hand,

... no room for error








Alvin caught offguard

in his stylish artist's hat.









An image of the 

grandeur of Africa 






Alvin's Story

Charcoal drawing is a difficult medium to master, but a masterful medium when well learned. With only varying shades of black available to conjure up impressions of all the colours and situations one wishes to commit to canvas, the artist needs to be drawing deep from the soul - if believable results are to be obtained. Artist Alvin Mark Schroeder does this well, but one discovers this is no surprise once one gets to know more about him.

Charcoal must have been one of the earliest of drawing tools, probably predating the controlled use of fire. Natural fires provided bountiful supplies of charcoal in handy pencil-like forms. And certainly early man must have discovered its use as a drawing tool. Probably only its lack of durability had robbed us of the many images that were produced countless years ago.

For Alvin to choose charcoal as a medium may well seem unusual, however, through his most interesting ancestry, he qualifies very well to be a master of this tool. One needs to only to study his artwork that is saturated with the essence of Africa, to realise that his German name does not define correctly, who he really is.

Alvin is an artist with loads of ambition backed by heaps of energy. He has travelled an interesting but not easy path to where he is now. It has taken him to a number of learning institutions and experiences, to faraway countries, and to meetings with other nations.

But clearly this is only the beginning of a long and productive road ahead. His enterprise AMS Creations has just recently taken formal root and he is keen to put all his studies and experience to full use to turn his long-time dreams into reality.

So who is Alvin? With a German somewhere in his recent ancestry, he carries the name Schroeder, but inside he carries the soul of Africa in his blood and roots, handed down to him by his ancient African ancestors, the Koisan.

For those non-South Africans who do not know, the Koisan are the early inhabitants of Southern Africa who fell prey to a number of invasions from other African nations and foreign colonisers. Yet thankfully much of their rich culture remains known through rock paintings and handed-down traditions from thousands of years ago. And even more is being discovered all the time.

Alvin works to capture in his pictures, all the images that lie deep within him, but also he tries to add to the growing collection of documentation that depicts the lives and knowledge of this original African people.

To carry the message better, he adds a touch of antiquity to his pictures by dyeing the canvas in rooibos tea, and coating this to preserve its colouring. The colouring is a bonus as it contributes colour to the images drawn onto the canvas. This parchment appearance also forms a perfect background to the charcoal drawings that he skilfully sketches, showing scenes of African nature, as well as the lifestyle of the Koisan.

It s a joy to see Alvin put charcoal to canvas and watch his pictures come to life as he transforms his knowledge and imagination into beautiful African scenes.




Last Updated 02 November 2017 12:14