For Sunday, December 27, 2015:
“There are painters who transform the sun to a yellow spot, but there are others who with the help of their art and their intelligence, transform a yellow spot into [the] sun.”
One of the gifts Santa brought me for Christmas this year was an adult coloring book of Celtic designs. I have long wanted one of these coloring books – part of my inner child has never grown up, it seems – to help me relax and give my hands something to do, and I was excited to unwrap that present, and the colored pens that came with it.
Yesterday I went through the book to look for a design to start with, then I opened the pens and laid them all out in front of me. Because it’s been so long since I’ve done any coloring, I wanted to find a simple design (some are surprisingly complicated) so I could ease into the process again. And because I have significant tremor in my dominant hand, I needed one with a lot of white space. I had already decided to not worry about staying in the lines because of that — Picasso also said, “Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.” — but I do want to try.
At the same time, I decided to try coloring with my non-dominant hand. It turns out, after all, that I have much more control with my left hand than with my trembling right hand.
I’ve long been semi-ambidextrous because I had to learn cursive handwriting with my left hand when I broke my right arm just days before third grade started, and then re-learn regular and cursive writing when the cast was removed. (That’s how old I am – schools still made students go back to their dominant hands in such cases, especially if it involved going from left-handed back to right-handed.)
I would have been just as happy to stay left-handed in all things, but, among other things, I did continue to eat with my non-dominant hand, and over the years I would practice writing that way, too. That experience is what generated my exercise of writing and/or drawing with one’s non-dominant hand to encourage new creativity.
Another decision I made yesterday could prove interesting: I’m not going to worry about colors. I want the final results to resemble jewels, so the deer I’m working on now won’t be tawny and grey. It may be blue instead. Or violet. I haven’t decided yet, but it already has red and pink wings.
There is no sun in this particular design, but there will be yellow spots. Or knots, rather, since it is a Celtic template. I hope Picasso will approve. I know I do. Maybe that’s even more important.