Saw this article in the midnight ABC news. Sounds like a great idea. Getting other people in on the drawing is excellent and must certainly be an ice-breaker.
VLine train art project Transit puts train passengers' creative talents on display
An artist's regular train commutes in England and Victoria inspired a new exhibition set to roll into the Bendigo Station.
Transit, by Julie Andrews, is comprised of black-and-white sketches by passengers on V/Line trains.
"In England I did a lot of travel on trains, and I found there's a space with that that I find really useful for creativity," the Bendigo-based artist said.
"When I started studying in Melbourne I'd be taking the train and drawing, and people would be watching and we'd always end up having conversations - really meaningful conversations."
For the past two months, Mrs Andrews has been asking complete strangers to sketch for her.
People of all ages and abilities are encouraged to pick up a pen and clipboard and have a go.
Sarah Archard and her children took up the challenge and found it a great way to ride from Bendigo to Melbourne.
"It's quite relaxing actually. It made the trip go quickly," Ms Archard said.
"It's excellent. It's not something you'd normally do because spare time is lacking in everyone's lives at the moment."
Sketching connects train passengers, alone together
Commuter Marie Belfield said the sketches offered a deeply personal insight to the artist.
"It's like looking inside of people and seeing a different life," Ms Belfield told the ABC.
"You see a sort of secret life of people when you're looking at their drawings you get an insight into a person's secret life through their drawings.
"You can't really tell what people are like when you talk to them. You don't really know what's going on inside but the drawing will reveal another layer of them."
Mrs Andrews agrees.
"Someone said to me on a train: 'It's a funny space where we are alone together'."
Mrs Andrew has been running the program about two days a week on a variety of off-peak V/Line trains.
She said she can have up to 30 passengers drawing on any day.
Sketch contributors will be rewarded at the end of the exhibition by being able to keep a work of their choice.
"At the closing we look around and we choose a drawing that resonates with us as an anonymous gift from one traveller to another. It's a way of connecting," Mrs Andrews said.
Transit will open at Bendigo Station on Monday, following a recent exhibition of sketches in Melbourne.
The Transit project will continue until October.