Augusta Golden May 6, 2021 Dot to Dot
It has been a long while since I last wrote. I really miss it when I cant put my thoughts to paper (or keys... as it is). Last week I was teaching a bunch of kids aged 4-8 about the importance of mindfulness. This is a class which I teach every week. If you have never taught little kids before, it is much like trying to herd cats. The mindfulness class is one hour and for one hour I need about ten to twenty different activities as their attention span is so fleeting. Last week I had prepared a very exciting lesson using vinegar and baking soda to demonstrate how, when your mind is racing, it is like bubbles in the jar. I LOVED my new experiment and the kids were mildly amused for thirty seconds. I taught them to put their hand on their belly and breathe down the "bubbles of anxiety in their minds". Naturally as the acetic acid reacted completely with the sodium bicarbonate, the bubbles settled. Seemed like a compelling lesson? But, as with the others, it was... on to the next lesson!
I quickly put away the jar, vinegar, and baking soda and moved on to another exercise and another and another. At the end of each mindfulness class, I conclude with the same exercise: lying on your stomach and drawing your happy place. As soon as I announce that we are going to be doing the mindful drawing, they excitedly drop to their tummies and wiggle with the anticipation of a kid on Christmas morning. I pass out the fresh white paper and a can containing shards of crayons. The second their crayons hit the paper, you can hear a pin drop. There is no goofing around, there is no talking, but there is complete mindfulness. For fifteen minutes, they will draw, colour, and become immersed in their creation. Of course the real magic is not what is happening on the paper but rather what is happening in their mind. They are thinking about their happy place and then making it happen on paper - perfect mindfulness. It is the same as when we use guided visualization to enter into meditation.
After that you can highlights it and make it as the main concentration. Before the filling step of the values, you are better to have good lines first in order to help you follow the structure. Take a finest pen and make some dots around the highlight. Avoid putting any dots inside the highlight area but keep the points gradually more and farther part closer the highlight. Try to make the dots closer together because it will keep the marks to stop when you move away from the highlight. After make sure the highlight fades to the mid-tones, continue with marking the points closer together. In this step, you should use middle sized pen. Next, fill for almost entire sphere and make the pints closer together until approaching the shadow. This method is also useful if you want to create images but do not know how to draw cartoons. For the shadow, the step is also closer the marks with the widest pen. Particularly in the darkest area, you should make the dots so loose that the white shows through. Then you may want to cheat and use the pen to color the entire shadow, but do not do this because you will lose the pattern of texture visibly that can only be created with pointillism.
The great part about mindful drawing is that it is not just for kids! In fact, my wife is a Certified Zentangle Teacher and regularly sees the amazing benefits in adults who practice this form of mindful drawing. Just like meditation, mindfulness with a pen can also reduce blood pressure, reduce heart rate, and have long-term benefits with depression and anxiety. Have you ever found yourself just doodling on a scrap piece of paper. There is a good chance that when you are making lines or dots or shading with your pen or pencil, you are focused on present moment. Perhaps if the idea of meditation seems to be not your cup of tea but you could use to manage your stress; why not consider mindful drawing, doodling, or zentangle. The goal is not to make art to hang on your fridge but rather to give your restless mind a much need break from the endless chatter.
So you want to learn how to draw cartoons? Heres some of the equipment youll need. Everything can be found at an art supply store or sometimes an office supply store, and it will cost you less than $20 or so. The first thing you will need is a basic sketch book. You can choose whatever size you want. Some people like to have a small one to keep in their pocket or backpack at all times. That way, if they get an idea for something, they can jot it down. Or if you are riding the bus or subway, or waiting in line somewhere, or see someone that looks funny and would make a great character, you can pull it out and start drawing them right there. (Dont get caught! Not everyone likes to be made into a cartoon.)
Teapots, mugs, plates covered in spots and dots are extremely stylish and popular at the moment. Emma Bridgewater has her Polka Dot design and visit any household section of department stores you will see lots of spotty and dotty pottery designs. But did you know there are several very simple ways suitable for all ages and abilities to of paint your own pottery with a dotty or spotty design. Finger print spots Your fingers make some of the best dots on pottery and ceramics, plus it is something even the youngest child with a bit of help can do. The only thing you need to do before starting your finger print dots is to make sure is that your fingers are clean and free of any grease. When you change colours make sure you clean your fingers well. A damp sponge to wipe your fingers on works quite well. The spots created with your fingers may not be perfectly round but they are unique, stylish and completely personal.