Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain is a book that can teach you how to draw. Author Betty Edwards was an art teacher who observed that most of her older students drew at the level of the average 10 or 11 year old. They drew cartoonish stick figures for a tree, house, or person, rather than the objects they were actually observing.
Then she started reading about studies of the left and right sides of the brain. Although we now know that people use both sides of their brain in a more fluid way, these basic ideas still hold true.
The left side of the brain is: verbal, symbolic, logical, linear, time-oriented, and prefers simple tasks. It’s the side that is valued in education, but also happens to be the side you must turn off in order to draw.
The right side of your brain is: visual, nonverbal, intuitive, nonjudgmental, non time-oriented, holistic, and prefers complicated tasks. If you learn how to turn on this side of your brain, you will automatically be able to draw more accurately, because you will be able to “see” what you’re observing, rather than drawing the oversimplified symbols that you’ve been taught to see. In addition, you’ll be learning about each of the objects that you draw, by taking the time to really observe them.
Read an excerpt from Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain.
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