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Open My Eyes

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Open My Eyes
The world is waking up all around us--at last! Everwhere I look there is something to catch my eye--the grape hyacinth peaking through the dried leaves, the daffodils gaily waving, the dogwood buds swelling. All week I have been humming Open the Eyes of My Heart, Lord (click here to see a Youtube version of this song with inspiring nature pictures).
Years ago Dr. Betty Edwards stated "Learning to draw means learning to see." Her theory, which I personally have proven, is that anyone can learn to draw well if they learn to access the right side of the brain.  Her best selling book, Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, states that with our left brain we reason about how things should be. So when we draw with our left brain, we often get frustrated because we're not drawing what we see but what our left brain expects. However, if you just use the right brain, you can see the lines, the shapes, textures, light as it actually occurs. Then your brain is able to communicate that with your hand to draw what you see. As I said, it actually works.
This week's challenge is guaranteed to frustrate you at first. Find a branch that is flowering or leafing out. Seat yourself close to it so that it fills your full line of vision, no distractions.
  1.  Put your pencil near the bottom center of your paper.
  2.  Now focus your eyes and full concentration on the left side of the branch at the bottom of where you want to draw. Slowly move your eyes up the branch. Notice bumps, shapes, angles, lines.
  3. As your eyes move, move your pencil exactly as you move your eyes. DO NOT look at your drawing--keep your eyes on the branch.
  4. Continue up the branch, around the leaves/flowers, around the top and back down the right side.
  5.  DO NOT lift your pencil from the paper at any time. No peeking!
When you get done you can look. Don't worry, it will look like a scribble. The drawing is not the point. Looking, no, seeing is the point of this exercise. Each time you do this exercise, you will see new things. You will be able to focus longer and your drawing will get better (but it will never look like more than a scribble.).
Then share with us what happened as well as the words (or link) to an inspirational song which reminds you of spiritual lessons learned from this exercise.  Whew!  That's a tall order but I think you're up to the challenge.  If you're brave, scan your drawing to me and I will share it. I promise to show mine.

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Trish Tickle
2014-04-18 8:57 PM

As promised, I have shared a photo of my subject (a rhurbarb bloom stock) and my drawing. See it on the Facebook page for Chillicothe Adventist Church.


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