The wonder and amazement we feel as children stems from discovering the world for the first time. Children are remarkably inquisitive, asking what, why, and how everything works, in an attempt to gain knowledge and understanding of their world. This openness and wonder is often referred to as the “beginner’s mind.” The next time you approach your drawing table with existing expectations and knowledge, try to show up with a beginner’s mind, open to all possibilities and questions. Our sense of curiosity and wonder can be rekindled and refreshed when we challenge ourselves to be beginners again.
Often we feel pressure for our work to be excellent in order for us to share it with loved ones or social media. Allow yourself the luxury of not being an expert (find more of Wendy’s motivational tips here). Disconnecting from that pressure and tapping into the joy of an activity can help us remember that creating something just for yourself is worthwhile. Your joy is valid, regardless of whether or not you share it. We don’t have to be experts in all things. We can be “just ok” (or even bad!) at something and still feel satisfaction and pride from our time spent. Find fulfillment in the journey, enjoy the process, and don’t worry about the results.
We loved this blog post on cultivating your beginner’s mind and suggest giving it a read if you’re looking for more. Here’s an excerpt:
“Remove the word ‘should’ from your vocabulary.
What ‘should’ happen is based on your preconceived notions and expectations. Saying something ‘should’ happen a certain way ties you to the outcome.
Instead, let go of the outcome and of your beliefs about what should happen or how something should be done.
Let the world surprise you with new potential outcomes, and keep an open mind.” –Maggie Wooll
Enjoy the glory of being a beginner – open to possibilities and driven by inquisitiveness and wonder. Being a beginner comes with a certain lightness of being, an excitement, even if what you are producing feels lackluster. Open up to the everyday wonders around you, and approach your drawing practice with a beginner’s mind to add more joy into your life.
Joy is joy! Let’s draw together.
If you want to practice the fundamentals on your own time, try a free 1-week trial of one of our courses, Botanical Basics or Practice of Botanical Drawing, where you can not only watch helpful video lessons but also post your progress to our community Art Feed and receive positive and helpful personalized feedback on your drawings. You can also join our monthly Webinar where we look at all of the lovely work from the past month, ooh and aah at your talents, and discuss possible improvements and suggestions for future pieces.