Friday, April 18, 2014

My New Drawing Book

Ladies and gentlemen, presenting the first drawing in my new drawing book…

A Tibetan woman holds the Dali Lama.

As a youngster, I considered myself to be fairly equal-brained. I was decent at both analytical (left-brain) and creative (right-brain) tasks. But then as I progressed through the education system, my right brain became quickly overshadowed by my left brain.

Over the years, my work life relied heavily upon logic, analytics, and objectivity. My creative-side experienced severe neglect. I can't begin to count the number of times when I had a dreadful feeling that my right brain was suffocating.

I occasionally resorted to music to keep my right brain alive -- hence my learning to play the cello and guitar a few years back. But never in my adult life did I consider drawing.

Last week, my friend, Claudia, mentioned that she had joined a plein air drawing and painting group. I mentioned to Claudia that someday I'd love to learn how to draw, and Claudia offered to give me a drawing lesson. It's so nice when "someday" is only a few days later!

So, a few days later, Claudia and I walked to a park up on Queen Anne for my drawing lesson. Claudia had me draw various objects at the park -- a lampost, a part of the playground, a tree -- all while instructing me on perspective and light. The hours passed quickly. I was quite obviously experiencing "flow" -- the mental state of being completely absorbed in an activity. For me, my single-minded immersion in drawing was a clear indication of rapture.

Yesterday, Claudia gifted me a small drawing book and a pen for my upcoming bike trip.

My new drawing book!

I could hardly wait for the bike trip to christen the book with my first drawing. So I sat down with my new drawing book, I opened it to the first page, I held a pencil in one hand (and an eraser in the other), and I began to draw a photograph from a coffee table book called "A Simple Monk."

Photograph from "A Simple Monk" (New World Library, 2001). 

I'm happy with how my first drawing turned out, especially since I've never considered myself to have any artistic talent with it comes to drawing or painting. There's definitely room for improvement -- LOTS of improvement. But for a first attempt at reviving the artistic side of my right brain, I don't think it's too shabby.

Thank you, Claudia, for the art lesson and for helping to breathe life back into my right brain. I look forward to filling up the pages of my new drawing book.

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