Caution: This is a rant!
Countless times I’m told, “I can’t even draw a stick man” I believe it isn’t so much that people can’t as that they don’t want to. Truly, anyone can draw given enough desire. It’s a technical skill like learning to read and write.
No one learned to read by being handed a copy of “War and Peace”. I’m not sure why people hold themselves to such high expectations when it comes to drawing. Why would you expect to draw a portrait of your mother before you can draw a cube or a cylinder? And how is it that drawing portraits became the gold standard of artistic ability? But that is a topic for another blog, and I digress.
Everyone learns to form letters when they begin school. It’s elementary. Everyone knows you need to learn it to move on to reading and writing. You learn to count before you learn Math, New Math, or Arithmetic. (Is there such a thing as Arithmetic any more?) Drawing is the same. Learning to form all the letters of the alphabet were imperative to learn higher skills of reading and writing. But once learned countless doors were open for learning and experiencing life. What things would you be unable to do if you couldn’t read or write? How difficult it would be to even buy groceries if you couldn’t read.
Drawing is simply visual communication, and it opens just as many doors. They happen also to be doors into self awareness, imagination and emotion.
I think I can show anyone how to draw, what I’m not sure I can do is give anyone the desire to. What I do think I can do is show people a way into their creativity and another mode of communication.
Being able to draw does not automatically translate as being creative; but being creative can be impeded by not developing the skill of drawing and all the artistic releases beyond that; painting, sculpting conceptual planning; spatial thinking…
I don’t want to oversimplify and set anyone up for failure. Yes, anyone can learn to draw, but it’s not easier than learning how to form the letters of the alphabet. It’s advanced letters of the alphabet.
To paraphrase Harvey MacKay, “No one said it would be easy, they just said it would be worth it.” And communicating visually is well worth it in my humble opinion.
The ability to draw isn’t a gift , it’s a learnable skill. The ease of learning it depends how much you are willing to break it down into achievable tasks.
You don’t have to learn to draw. It’s not mandatory in school like reading and writing; but why would you deny yourself an entire world? Would you purposefully choose not to learn to write?
As a side note. I just googled Arithmetic, and found the following Wikepedia entry: “the oldest and most elementary branch of mathematics, used by almost everyone”. OMG, I was taught Arithmetic in elementary school not Math….that makes me…older than dirt…