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  • Monacelli Press

The Path of Drawing: Lessons for Everyday Creativity and Mindfulness

Patricia Watwood

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Drawing & drawings

The Path of Drawing shows readers how to introduce drawing into their everyday life in simple-to-follow, step-by-step lessons, exercises, and daily sketchbook practice, in order to nurture their creativity. Introducing a practice to enhance mental and spiritual well-being for the enrichment of one's life, Watwood offers readers a systematic approach to drawing that combines basic instruction and mindfulness exercises.

The Path of Drawing is a book on cultivating creativity and using drawing as a practice of mindfulness. Today, many people are looking to practices of mindfulness to improve quality of life, to unplug, to alleviate negative conditions like stress, anxiety, and depression, and to build resilience and enjoy the present moment. Adjacent to such practices as meditation and journaling, creative visual thinkers need a pathway to mindfulness that works through their hands and materials, in a visual and non-verbal way.

This book will guide readers to cultivate a creative drawing habit in three ways:
(1) Step-by-step demonstrations will guide makers through beginning- and intermediate-level drawing and mixed-media projects that will build technical skills and teach realist concepts. These will provide a road map for their development of a personal creative sketchbook practice.
(2) Introduce strategies for cultivating creativity, inspiration, and imagination, so that readers can strengthen their capacity for individuality in their creative work. The author will share her process steps, and those of other working artists, on how to find, refine, and develop a creative idea from inkling to completion.
(3) Focus on the aspects of mindfulness as particularly relevant to creative individuals in overcoming blocks and common emotional challenges to accomplishing creative work. It deals with overcoming fear and how to develop confidence in your individual voice.

The sample projects in this book are designed to be approachable and manageable in a short period of time. It is not intended to be a rigorous course of study toward mastering complex skills. These projects are designed to offer the reader samples that will help them enjoy time spent working creatively, and develop some technical skills and master concepts along the way. They should fit into daily life to bring more creative thinking to every aspect of life or work, grounding readers in a practice that helps them feel calmer, more patient, and more open to observing the joys of the world around them. A creative practice can help build qualities of patience, confidence, calm, connectedness, and bravery.

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