“Me? Draw? No, not really. I have no talent!” You can hear this phrase so often from people. Yet it’s not true. Everyone can learn to draw. You only need to look at the popularity of art classes in recreation centers to confirm this.
When people pshaw and say they’re unable to draw, ask them simply whether they can thread a needle, or ride a bicycle. Everything can be learned. Drawing can too.
As a child, no one has really learned how to draw. Children do not stop and make poses naturally. There are a lot of very naturally-talented people, true but we must break the myth. One does not need exceptional talent to draw. You don’t learn how to write just to become a famous and celebrated. Drawing opens a door to our creativity. We are given the chance to explore a new path.
Draw to Express Yourself, to Discover Yourself and to Relax
Drawing is a healthy way to escape from everyday life. Like all other art forms, it deeply nourishes its followers by allowing them to forget the passing of time.
Drawing can be very energizing. Often, people start off drawing tired, but they always come out full of energy. What happens is that initial, only the left brain is exhausted. So we need to turn our right hemisphere to allow time for the other to take a break and recoup.
Drawing requires a downtime. It is close to contemplation and even active meditation. It is an act of interiority and also a tool that allows us to speak. It is quite valuable for our emotional and mental health.
Art can give tangible form to our emotions and our visions, our moods and feelings. When what was invisible becomes visible, we are less overwhelmed with the sentiment that filled us, and thus we have more time to observe and learn new information. This process is transformative, because the distance reduced between us and our inner world enables new insights. Create, draw, and paint: it gives substance to our moods and can then help us better see and understand them.
In drawing, one can reveal oneself to the one’s own self. It is a path that takes us back into ourselves. Before you start drawing, you don’t know your style. Make broad strokes or small ones? Everyone draws in their own way, but when in contact with others, in a course for example, we share our visions. Even if everyone draws the same thing, each will have a very different perception of it.
Through drawing, we discover who we are. It is often a very emotional meeting. One can also discover others in drawing. What one feels about other people can come out vividly. In fact, drawing also allows us to better accept our differences, and those of others too.
Drawing is Learning to Look
When we draw, we first take time to look about us. Even before a still life, like an apple or a bottle, it is surprising to suddenly discover a shape, a profile, or a color. No doubt one has already seen a bottle in one’s life before, but this time, one rediscovers it from a new perspective. Drawing expands our vision. The right hemisphere of our brain is the one that feels, perceives, tastes, and so forth. This part of our brain does not care if an object is a bottle or an apple, for it is the form that matters to it.
Indeed, once we’ve finished drawing, we don’t look at things around us in the same way anymore. We see and observe more. We notice the same overall refinement in everything that affects our visual perception. We discover more details. Where previously you could see a painting of just two people under a tree, now you can see the thickness of the skin, intense shadows, the wind in the leaves, the shape of the people’s eyes, and so on.
- To help better educate our vision and visual acuity, carry a sketch pad with you always and take time to stop and draw.
- You can also create a visual space for yourself in which you can paste photos, pictures, notes on visits, drawings, etc.
Stemming from Eastern traditions, and from the ancient Sanskrit, meaning “sacred circle” are mandalas. These are circular designs with repeating shapes and details that, when drawn, reveals clues about ourselves. What color did you decide in painting the edges of the mandala, representing the universe around us (or the center)? It has meaning.
Mandalas accompany the return to the Self and in being so creative, and intuitive, determine the balance between our Self and the universe, seeking the unity in all, as everything in being of one Unit. The focus of the mandala symbolizes the center of energy. Take the time to color or even draw a mandala; it is in the taking out time for yourself that helps to relax.
“I have been drawing for five years now. As a child I loved to draw. But because of my job, I put aside drawing. Then, one day, I had the urge to draw landscapes of art. I wanted to capture textures and contrasts. I also began to draw bodies. Then, little by little, I returned to drawing in my work. As I am a creative director, I had the opportunity to do so. I must say that now, I draw more and more. In addition, I have begun a series on couples in ink. When I draw, I take off. I put music on. I use a glass of wine and I fly. Drawing allows me to be empty and full at the same time. I find that I am resourceful. For me, drawing is a form of therapy, but also, quietly, it has become a passion.” – Dana