“When we are practising the mindfulness of drawing, it id the movement of the pen across the page, the coordination of eye and hand, and the object we are drawing that become our mindful focus.” -Page 10 of Wendy Ann Greenhalgh’s Mindfulness & the Art of Drawing
I have yet to fully embrace the mindfulness movement, and honestly I’m not sure that I want to. I know I have a lot going on, and a lot of “chatter” in my head of tasks that need to be completed and lists that need to be checked off. But I am okay with that. This is how I work and it works well for me. Meditation gives me anxiety, which seems like the opposite of what it is supposed to do, so I avoid it.
I reading the first chapter of Mindfulness & the Art of Drawing, I think I can make a compromise with the mindfulness movement and approach it though drawing. This definitely makes more sense to me. I first think about when I use to doodle my notes in high school and college. That act of doodling helped my to focus on what was being said/taught in class, though I guess technically that made me less mindful of the lesson. Next thought that comes to mind is when I use to be more into visual verbal journaling. I use to get so into my journals, and I would draw, paint, and build layers, just being absorbed into the act of the medium to the paper and to the layers. I have not done that much since I have been teaching K-8…and since I have become so busy.
I’m not gonna lie. I was nervous about this book and the mindfulness stuff. But after this first chapter, I understand that Wendy Ann Greenhalgh’s ideas are more about getting lost or absorbed in the act of drawing and letting that be your “breaths” or whatever to get you to focus on one thing only. I feel relieved and less anxious and hopefully I can revive my passion for journaling.
I’d like to imagine myself beginning classes with a mindfulness drawing activity with kiddos, though I am not sure how that would play out yet, or if even realistically I will have enough time with my students to do that. But maybe there will be a way I will figure out to incorporate mindful drawing. I still need to work on it for myself though.