Thursday, June 9, 2011

Summer School

After ending the “school year” of studying the Old Testament, I’m veering of in a new direction this summer. I’m taking an art class designed to teach me to “Draw on the Right Side of the Brain”. Sounded good to me. I love to paint, really dabble more than paint, but couldn’t get structure to my paintings without some ability to draw. Since I didn’t seem to be born with that ability, I decided to give a class a try.

The teacher says she can teach anyone to draw, but after my first class, I’ve got my doubts. The first assignment was to do some drawings without any instruction to see where we were skill-wise. Well, my self portrait looks like I have a beard…something I’m very careful to avoid. The sketch of a folding chair resembles anything you’d dare to sit on only vaguely. The sketch of my hand was a bit better, but my ring looks like it’s about a four karat not one. Then we got to drawing an outline picture of a face, then the reverse of it opposite. Well my brain just wouldn’t compute. After about forty tries at home, I can approximate it sometimes, but not consistently.

I’m not giving up yet. It was only the first class, but I’m prone to assess my abilities and move onto something else if one doesn’t work out. I’m afraid this may be one of those. We’ll see.

The last thing I tackled that was difficult was learning to play Mahjongg. I kind of got roped into learning when houseguests insisted, and was quickly hooked. I’m not all that great at that either, but the companionship of gathering weekly with friends for a bite of lunch and a long afternoon of a challenging game seems to be more productive than playing Video Solitaire, which I am pretty good at, during the same time period. Studies have shown that keeping your mind active with new and different activities seems to offer some protection against mental deterioration, and being with friends adds to your life expectancy. I want to keep my faculties if I’m going to be around a while.

During the years my life was so full of children and grandchildren, I never imagined the amount of leisure time I seem to have now. I’m so thankful I have the opportunity for piddling around with things that interest me. That alone should be reward enough for my leisure activities. I think it may just have to be, at least where the drawing is concerned.


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