Have you ever watched a seabird appear to change colors from white to aqua as it dives toward the ocean or turn to gold at sunset? Of course the bird doesn’t change but the reflected light does. One way to appreciate life more fully is by learning “how” to look, since beauty and interesting effects of light are all around.
Most of us think “drawing is hard” and are never taught or motivated enough to move beyond stick figures. Many people don’t know that drawing is not an inborn ability but a skill that anyone can learn in a short time with a little practice. The simple exercises in Drawing on The Right Side of The Brain can give anyone enough skill with a pencil to increase his or her appreciation of the world.
“I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand,” taught the philosopher Xun Zi. 不闻不若闻之，闻之不若见之，见之不若知之，知之不若行之；学至于行之而止矣。
“Do to understand” is where drawing comes in – Drawing is just applied seeing. Try sketching a person’s face to reveal and observe features and expressions in ways you’ve never seen before. Try sketching a landscape to see details of the ground that are hidden from most people and really get to see the subtleties of clouds for the first time. Try to draw the view from your window at different times of day, or in various weather conditions.
Even if your drawing isn’t very good, you will begin to notice things differently. These activities open the shades to a window that lets you see the world as an artist. With new appreciation for nuances your seeing will be transformed into something more fascinating.