Embracing Non-Dominance

Next week I am headed to the beautiful Pacific Northwest where I’ll be spending five days in Port Townsend at Artfest, so I thought I better start getting loosened up creatively. And what better way is there to loosen up than to embrace using your non-dominant hand to paint or write with?

While I’m a lousy housekeeper and my desk is a huge pile of chaos, like many people I am more comfortable in the role of control freak deliberate participant when it comes to putting down marks in my artwork. So the mention of using my non-dominant hand to create art with always freaks me out a little and yet every time I actually try it, I’m surprised at how much fun it turns out to be.

Many creative instructors use this as a warm-up technique in their classes. I remember Carla Sonheim having us do this in a class I took from her last fall, and I won’t be surprised if Jesse Reno has us do it in the class I’ll be taking from him on Saturday at Artfest. So, as I said, I just thought I’d prime myself a bit this morning and I wasn’t disappointed. I think my alphabet sampler turned to be a bit of a mess, but I like it and the little drawings I attempted because they show a side of me that would never have come out if my brain was working through my dominant hand.

If you think this kind of thing sounds scary, then that is a sign you, too, definitely need to give it a try.

I should do this more often.

I’m going to. In fact, I may just start making this a daily exercise!


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2 Responses to Embracing Non-Dominance

  1. DycheDesigns says:

    I recently read a book that suggeste this technique. I can’t draw to save my life but it was a lot of fun and took the pressure off.

  2. Tonia Davenport says:

    I don’t consider myself a “drawer” either and yes, this approach really does take all the pressure away!

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