Art as a Relaxation Technique…or Not

I always hear about how relaxing it is to create art. You just let the creativity flow through you without a thought, letting your hands and eyes move to the will of something outside of your everyday self. Funny how that never happens to me. Everything I do is a problem to be solved—or not solved and thrown away instead. Really, even things I know how to draw are challenges. Getting the light just right on a flower petal, or making the branches of a tree stick out in a tree-like way takes sketching, erasing, more erasing, throwing the drawing aside and pounding around the house wondering why it’s not working, more sketching…it goes on. I’ll wake up at three o’clock in the morning thinking, “What if I turned the paper sideways? Maybe that would do it!” The closest analogy I can think of is a math word problem like this one (which took up the better part of a day, churning in my brain). Drawing, for me, takes the same kind of concentration and frustration.

I kind of wish I could just let the creativity flow through me…but maybe then it wouldn’t be as much fun!

3 PM

This one made my life hell...and it never did turn out right!


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