Ste Illustrates Freelance Illustrator

Mister J Illustrates Freelance Illustrator

Drawing Helpful Thoughts

How drawing helps my mental health

A recent trip on the train back from Sheffield to Liverpool stirred the debate in my head about all the work I have to do at the moment, que major major stress! How am I going to get it all done on time (especially when I decide to write a blog post instead of doing said work). What am I going to do when this work is finished, how will I ever get any work again. How am I going to get paid for the work I’ve done!? This major breakdown lasts a period of 1 second, it then repeats for about 20 minutes or until I can distract myself with getting off the train or a strange new passenger getting on said train.

These are thoughts I have no doubt every freelancer has, with a varied degree of dealing with it power depending on the mindsets of said freelancers. However, and we now arrive at my point, it got me thinking that the only thing that really soothes the mind is the total out of body, in the moment experience of drawing.

The power of the page and the pencil on it

I love to draw, I even tried to make it a brand motto. It’s great. Even when it’s not, it’s great. The creation power you hold when you draw is unrivalled. Anything can happen on that page (paper or digital). Whether it be a mountainscape scene to a bustling city or a person humorously falling over. Anything is possible. The result can please or infuriate or inspire even more drawing. There’s also the chance it inspires less drawing but we’ll always be back to try at it again.

The time drawing is such good therapy as whilst I’m doing it, whilst the marks are being put down my brain is quiet. There are no thoughts, no opinions, no stresses just put that mark there like that, put that one there like that. And it’s bliss. The minute the mark is finished that quietness goes and is replaced with “well that looks shit” (joking of course – well it’s true but still said with a tongue in my cheek). I love that mark making time, its my quiet time, I have a job and I know what to do for that instant I’m going to make a mark.

That instant is the distinction, because that instant is the creative process engaged, focused and resolute. It just makes everything slip away. Before and after that instant there’s all kinds of thoughts, positive and negative but during there’s focus and for me therapy. (Colouring though – there’s nothing but stress ahoy with that shit :P).

How does it help you? I’d love to hear? Whats your instant? Do you have one that gives you a moment from brain stress? I do hope so.