This Drawing Exercise was developed to help get more clarity in my life and visualize my reality and future experiences I wish to manifest. It’s great for kids and adults, and I recommend revisiting it every couple months or so– for funsies!
There is power in creation. Take the all-knowing, all-seeing “you”, God, or Universe you may have heard about. We’ve created in the past and it felt great, right? Remember when you were young and you drew a pig, and your kindergarten teacher was so impressed they grabbed another teacher to see? That moment of recognition, no matter how small, may have given you a boost of confidence and made you realize “I have the ability to be seen.” And the conduit? Creation.
This all knowing, all seeing You, God, Universe, or whoever/whatever you decide to use to describe that supportive energy, is best recognized when you create. When you create, there’s a sense of freedom, expansion, and openness that can’t NOT exist when you do so. I remember hearing a Lewis Howes quote when he interviewed Gabby Bernstein, that when you’re in a state of creating, you cannot possibly judge anything. Creation is the ultimate child-like trait. When you’re a child you’re encouraged to create and explore your imagination. Nowadays, as an adult, sure, they have “adult coloring books”. And yet, these books- though useful as a beginner course in getting back into your imagination, still require drawing in preset lines. I wholeheartedly encourage slapping paint on a canvas, regardless of the aesthetics, and sans lines or designs that are already made for you. For example– my favorite painting to discuss in fine-art discussions is Malevich’s Black Square (Found below)
I mean… it’s a black square!? How is that art?? What was the purpose of it? Why a black square?
And so, maybe we’re afraid other people will wonder what our creations are, or why they even exist? What is we create something that is misunderstood or actively rejected? And this isn’t limited to drawings an paintings– this is ANYTHING we put out into the world. What about that blog post? Or that tweet I’m about to send? Who will I offend? Why? MUST OVERANALYZE AND PROTECT MYSELF FROM WHAT COULD BE!!
But hey, if that Black Square artwork can’t stand as a good reminder and motivate you to create without abandon… I don’t know what else could.
Oh wait, here’s another one:
This is by my boy, Wassily Kandinsky. He is my favorite artist. I can talk at great lengths about why his art is so important to me. Basically, he is an Abstract Expressionist. The process of creating art is the real art and the emotion that went into it. Think Jackson Pollock as well. His deal was action painting, and the artwork that was created after throwing paint on the canvas stood mainly as a recording of the “event” of creating the art.
So these great artists were famous. And though I began this post talking about feeling great when recognized as a great artist (especially by kindergarten teachers) what really matters is YOU recognizing yourself.
The universe (as I call her) has been hinting to me lately to get more clear about my life. The word “vision” and “hearing” keeps popping up for me in articles, signs outside, and my own inner compass. I also came across an article about children and imagination, and how creating is the ultimate fun- no matter where and how you’re doing it.
So, I wrote on a post it note this morning: “Verbally Visualize and Embody the Feeling” of my future. I started simple, because these days I’m more about critiquing about my life than I am viewing my life as a helpful, encouraging friend. So, I sat down with a blank piece of paper…
And I got to work… er, play!
When I was younger, before I started a personal blog at age 15, I wrote and drew in a journal daily. It was fun, because although I was a “good artist” in “real life”, in my journal I was sketchy, fast, and figured stick figures got the general idea across well enough. I didn’t hold myself to a certain standard and I knew no one else would be viewing this other than myself, so who the fudge-net would care? Wonderful! A place to exist free of critique. A platform I could practice self-love in privacy. I was very inspired by my favorite book series of the time, Amelia’s Notebook, which had a great knack for fast sketches and storytelling.
To begin, I realized I had no idea how to envision my future. Sure, I had general ideas… but I was hesitant to write them down, because I didn’t feel “capable”. Gotta be realistic, right? So, as a warm-up, I decided all I needed to do to get started was to draw what made me happy. One by one I drew a (very) rough sketch of the different hobbies and activities in my life that help me relax or laugh. I drew a notebook for writing, a camera representing my love of photography, a painter’s palette for painting, a youTube video for motivational videos, a quiet neighborhood for walks in nature, my ukulele, singing, and more. I drew them wherever the hell felt good and I made sure not to care and/or overthink the process. I just did. I acted. And the process reminded me of how free I felt when I was 14, laying on my bed, drawing in my journal while listening to music on my CD player. Only now, I was 29, sitting on the couch in the house I rent, listening to a Marie Forleo video playing in the background, dreaming my life away.
And then I added colors and the whole thing came alive. I wasn’t going to “waste time” blending, or shading for the perfect shapes, as I was taught in art school. Nah, I just chose 5 colored pencils and filled in areas. And it’s gorgeous guys. I’m a fan:
After finishing this piece, I wanted to do so much more. I began another blank piece of paper, writing Experiences I wanted to experience in my life. Though it isn’t done yet, I’m liking where it’s headed. So far, simple items such as buying a house, getting a dog, and becoming a mother are on there. Bigger dreams like traveling with my hubby, being interviewed by Oprah (hey, why not?) and becoming a CEO of my own company also made the sketch. And although my whole life isn’t laid out in front of me, taking a moment to reconnect to the dreams and activities of the future gave me a dose of hope. So before I started this drawing exercise, I felt self-conscious and nervous about opening up to possibilities… now I wonder why I was so hesitant?
This exercise helped give me direction, and made me realize even if these things don’t come true, or my hobbies change- the idea of them makes me happy now, and I don’t need much else.