I'm taking a drawing class. It's being taught by my brother, so my mother pretty much forced me to take it. The reason I resisted is simply that I don't draw much, therefore I am not good at it, so obviously I would have preferred to leave it at that. To keep the pencils and paper tucked away, to avoid the incorrect proportions and the awkwardly depicted features. I wanted to bypass the discomfort of presenting sub-par drawings and learning to be okay with it. So, I dug my heels in and complained and told my family that it was going to be terrible.
But it's not terrible. In fact, I am rather enjoying myself. I have presented amateur pieces of work and I've survived. My brother doesn't judge me; I don't actually feel like I am going to die of shame just because I'm learning something new and making mistakes while I'm at it. It's been incredibly refreshing to wholeheartedly enjoy myself while doing something I am not very good at. Being surrounded by my friends, fumbling through instructions and laughing at ourselves all the while, it's been an adventure and one that has brought me so much joy.
In class on Friday, we talked about looking closely at a face and dismantling it down to very basic shapes. We had five minutes to put shapes together to create a portrait. There wasn't enough time to over think, to erase and retrace. So I just drew. And I created drawings that I'm proud of. It's been a long time since I've made something and felt genuinely happy with it. I was so thrilled to finally have a piece of paper to take home and say, "Look at this. I made it. Isn't it good?"
More than anything, this drawing class has reminded me that I need to create. Making art, whether it is good or bad, is essential for my well-being. Showing my brother a piece of work and nodding in agreement to his criticism and his praise felt foreign at first, but ultimately I learned that it's okay to be okay with both. To accept the imperfect and celebrate the things that you got right. Every Friday morning, as I traced the graphite across the blank page and produced images, I fell more in love with all of it. How it grew me and challenged me and brought me joy. I've fallen in love with how it feels to create art.