Art for therapy

One thing I’ve learnt about art over the years is that it can be great therapy. With so much depression and anxiety creeping into almost everyone’s daily life, art has it’s way of centering your mind and bringing peace.
I’m no psychologist or therapist but art has this way of distracting our mind and making us think and concentrate about other things. It has worked for me.
The forms of art I find most therapeutic are ones that contain repetition and constant strokes with not a lot of concentration or decision making. I tend to like graphite pencil drawing and felt tip pen techniques.
Sometimes when you are stressed, drawing can be aggravating, especially if you aren’t succeeding. I suggest gridding or tracing to be great options. Don’t think of tracing as cheating, because we are doing this for therapy and enjoyment and professionally or to compete. We are doing this for ourselves as a way of being creative and cultivating self-love and appreciation. Our main goal at this stage is to get the outline of our image down on paper.
Once you have the outline, start shading with a graphite pencil. An HB is a good one to use, working from light to dark. Just build up to the tones you need. Work very slowly and methodically. When you need to go darker, press a little harder (but not overly hard) and then change to a 2B. Then for darker still, try a 6B.
Let your mind be taken by matching tones, pushing harder and softer until you are happy with what you’ve achieved.
Stay tuned, maybe my next blog will be one on basic graphite pencil techniques. ☺

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