O'Keeffe was taught drawing from an early part of her development and she was also encouraged to sketch all manner of different objects as a means of training her eye. Even some teachers who she did not like could have a positive impact on her career by giving her new ideas for how to work and slowly but surely she started to get noticed once she had graduated. Flowers were of particular interest to her, and O'Keeffe would concentrate on specific elements of them which would then sometimes create abstract forms which loss all connection to reality once the context had been lost. She would also create abstract forms entirely from her imagination at other points, and Drawing XIII is one good example of that. This artwork can now be found in the prestigious Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, USA, where a wide variety of art and antiquities can be found all year round.
There are many abstract drawings by O'Keeffe which resemble elements of landscapes, and within this example we find several bush like forms which reach up alongside a jagged line to the left. This could easily have been inspired by a rockface with accompanying foliage, and the artist's interest in nature makes this all the more plausible. There is something magical about how the artist could reduce such complexity down to just a few abstract shapes, particularly when doing so with just a few charcoal sticks. It was only later that colour and oils would breathe new life into her work, but she was able to achieve success early on by combining charcoal with her own vivid imagination. These artworks are now particularly valuable, and indeed anything connected to the artist's hand can expect to command large valuations such is the interest in her career today.
This artist would become one of the most influential American artists in history and although we often took about her as an important female artist, in truth she was just a great artist. She always wanted to be treated that way, and felt her gender should be treated as irrelevant. That said, it did make success harder to achieve for her during this early part of the 20th century, but she was ultimately able to overcome any barriers that may have been placed in her way. Her drawings in recent years have received more of a focus and several have appeared for sale, normally from private collections. Some were actually gifted to friends at the time by O'Keeffe before now being sold on to take advantage of the great interest that continues to surround her career.