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Thoughts on "Drawing on the right side of the brain"

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Thoughts on "Drawing on the right side of the brain"

Postby nickus9 » Wed Jan 06, 2016 8:17 pm

Hello all,

I am new to drawing and do not have any confidence in my ability (not any lessons either). A few people im close to know I REALLY want to do a better job drawing but I want it to be my own original style. A family member got me a book... "Drawing on the right side of the brain" to help out. It all made sense but when I made it to the "upside down drawing" my results were not very good. So much so that i was nearly brought to tears. It stings because this book is all about "simply drawing and letting your own style come out" (which is EXACTLY what i want!!).

I am left handed and I feel like I am having trouble making a shift into an artistic mode (R-Mode). I can FEEL myself resisting or not having things "click into place". I dont want to go to a generic art class or lessons because I want my natural artistic ability (whatever it may be) to be left in tact, and not get overhauled by a bunch of rigid instructions and rules for "how to draw".

I feel like when this starts to click and I start to get it... it will be something really special. I can feel that in my heart and I want to see these feelings become a reality for me.

Does anyone have any advice or guidance?

Thank you for your time!

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Re: Thoughts on "Drawing on the right side of the brain"

Postby Purplelisa » Fri Jan 08, 2016 12:06 pm

Hi perhaps you are over thinking things don't force yourself to draw if you are not in the mood.just relax and draw what comes to you it might not be great to begin with but just keep going with it.my granddaughter who's ten was getting so annoyed with herself she said I just can't draw good ,I said you can just enjoy it and keeping doing it the Better your drawing will come and guess what the other day she draw a fabulous dog.enjoy it that's what it's all about .lisa:-)

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Re: Thoughts on "Drawing on the right side of the brain"

Postby Mike Sibley » Fri Jan 08, 2016 1:17 pm

nickus9 wrote:I am left handed and I feel like I am having trouble making a shift into an artistic mode (R-Mode). I can FEEL myself resisting or not having things "click into place". I don't want to go to a generic art class or lessons because I want my natural artistic ability (whatever it may be) to be left intact, and not get overhauled by a bunch of rigid instructions and rules for "how to draw".

Let's get one thing clear from the start - there are no rules!. And being left-handed has nothing to do with the ability to draw.

Also classes, workshops, etc don't affect the way you work - they provide the tools that you shape to suit yourself. There are two aspects to drawing: TECHNIQUES and INTERPRETATION or artistic vision. Drawing classes teach techniques; the building blocks you use to draw the way you want to draw. I teach online at Drawspace and run international workshops and, yes, I teach mainly the methods I use. But, whenever I can, I also teach the methods I don't use. I never expect any artist to soak it all up and become me :). I know, and expect, that they will adopt some, adapt others, and discard whatever doesn't work for them. That exactly as it should be.

Now, armed with the tools they have more freedom to interpret what they see in the way that they want to - developing their own style along the way.

A family member got me a book... "Drawing on the right side of the brain" to help out. It all made sense but when I made it to the "upside down drawing" my results were not very good. So much so that i was nearly brought to tears. It stings because this book is all about "simply drawing and letting your own style come out" (which is EXACTLY what i want!!).

It's a good book. The "upside down drawing" didn't work for you? So what! It wouldn't work for me either. Betty was trying to get a point across with that exercise; trying to get you to see what is really there and not what you think is there. By turning it upside down you remove the recognition factor so your conscious mind can't interfere. There are other ways of learning that might work for you. In my own lessons, for example, I use gridding to achieve the same end. It breaks everything down into segmented unrecognisable shapes, reduces everything to line, and removes all lighting and three-dimensional form. Neither Betty's method, nor mine, is mandatory. They're not exams you have to pass. If it doesn't work for you, discard it and move on.

I feel like when this starts to click and I start to get it... it will be something really special. I can feel that in my heart and I want to see these feelings become a reality for me.

Been there, done it. In stages...

There's only one "exercise" you MUST do. Draw. Just draw. And drawing what interests you helps. The more you draw the more you'll learn. You'll be teaching yourself to see; your brain to control your hand the way you want it to; and you'll find techniques that work for you. Gradually you'll find yourself thinking less about HOW to do something and it will become more automatic. Eventually, you'll be able to "see" something in your mind - an object, texture, a way of tackling something - and you'll draw it without conscious thought - IN YOUR OWN STYLE.

Finally, NEVER throw anything away. You'll need those old drawings to appreciate how far you've come. And you WILL progress. Every so often you'll produce a milestone drawing - one that exceeds your expectations. It's human nature to not want to regress so you've now set yourself a new target - a new level of proficiency that you know you are capable of producing.

Just draw and it will happen. And if along the way you decide to speed up your progress by taking workshops or lessons, or by reading "how to" books, you can only benefit. You'll be picking the brains of those who have gone before you, but how you use what you learn is up to you. You're the artist; the dreamer; the craftsman. You'll use your knowledge to recreate the world using YOUR vision and your own style will naturally evolve from that.
Mike Sibley
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Re: Thoughts on "Drawing on the right side of the brain"

Postby KrissyNZ » Mon Jan 11, 2016 3:05 am

Completely agree with Mike (though I'd be silly not to considering he's quite frankly a drawing master!).

I started my personal drawing journey by drawing the things that I loved: my favourite celebrities. I was a young teenager and I drew anyone that took my fancy or had a nice face! (Johnny Depp, Hugh Laurie, Drew Barrymore, The Rolling Stones to name a few). These drawings were just for fun and I drew on cheap printer paper with cheap pencils and some blending stumps. I didn't put any pressure on myself to create masterpieces, rather I drew because I enjoyed it and I let these drawings be an opportunity to see what I could do. In the space of one year I drew roughly 8-10 images, each one progressively better than the last. That was nearly 10 years ago now and while I look back at some of those drawings and cringe (I thought they were awesome at the time!), they were essential in my journey as a developing artist, because they formed the basis of my technical knowledge of working with pencils. Not only that, I can still see in those drawings the very things that attracted me to drawing the images in the first place. The sparkle in an eye, a big smile or the way the light fell on someone's face.

If you can free yourself of the pressure to create something amazing outright, you will find it a lot easier to simply draw and learn as you go! When I start a new drawing, the only thing I ever expect to get out of it, is to have learned something new that I can carry with me into future pieces!

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Re: Thoughts on "Drawing on the right side of the brain"

Postby oldhippy » Tue Mar 01, 2016 8:50 pm

KrissyNZ wrote:Completely agree with Mike (though I'd be silly not to considering he's quite frankly a drawing master!).

I started my personal drawing journey by drawing the things that I loved: my favourite celebrities. I was a young teenager and I drew anyone that took my fancy or had a nice face! (Johnny Depp, Hugh Laurie, Drew Barrymore, The Rolling Stones to name a few). These drawings were just for fun and I drew on cheap printer paper with cheap pencils and some blending stumps. I didn't put any pressure on myself to create masterpieces, rather I drew because I enjoyed it and I let these drawings be an opportunity to see what I could do. In the space of one year I drew roughly 8-10 images, each one progressively better than the last. That was nearly 10 years ago now and while I look back at some of those drawings and cringe (I thought they were awesome at the time!), they were essential in my journey as a developing artist, because they formed the basis of my technical knowledge of working with pencils. Not only that, I can still see in those drawings the very things that attracted me to drawing the images in the first place. The sparkle in an eye, a big smile or the way the light fell on someone's face.

If you can free yourself of the pressure to create something amazing outright, you will find it a lot easier to simply draw and learn as you go! When I start a new drawing, the only thing I ever expect to get out of it, is to have learned something new that I can carry with me into future pieces!

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