Father Time suggesting that Baby New Year get serious about memory drawing.
As the old year draws to a close it’s only natural to review it and to begin thinking about the new one. Relative to memory drawing, did you do any last year? And if you did, were you consistent about it? Whether you answered yes or no, resolve now to make this year your year of memory drawing.
A number of articles on this site attempt to explain why visual artists benefit from a trained visual memory. The principle reason is that it’s impossible to look at both your subject and your drawing at the same time – unless you’re tracing, of course.
Another reason is that once out of school your subjects will not often be static plaster casts, or professional models. They will be fleeting impressions (like last evening’s sunset), or be in constant motion (like your daughter who never sits still).
For most endeavors the difference between success and failure is commitment. When it comes to memory drawing that commitment is a mere 15 minutes a day, four to five days per week. Odds are, you waste more time on social media every few hours!
So how can you actually commit to memory drawing? By doing two simple things:
- Prepare ahead of time.
- Tie your commitment to an established habit.
Let me explain.
I often use the act of brushing your teeth as an analogy. What if every time you intended to brush your teeth you had to first go to the store? Realistically, how often would you brush your teeth?
But that’s not how it works. Instead, you likely have your brush and paste on hand so that you can regularly engage in the morning and evening routine. Not only that, but you also know that once you finish breakfast, and/or before going to bed, you brush your teeth.
The same thing applies to memory drawing. Begin the week prepared. Set all your materials out in advance and then purpose to do the drawings right after some other daily event.
Doing your memory drawings immediately after another daily event is a form of habit chaining.
What if, immediately upon completing your morning or evening teeth brushing, you spent the next 15 minutes doing your memory drawing? Do that for a few weeks and you’ll be well into the memory drawing habit!
A New Year’s Resolution
If you’re like most people you’d rather begin something new on special days like the first day of the week or month than on any other day. Better yet, how about the beginning of a new year! It’s a defined point in time, understood by all.
That’s why most people engage in determining resolutions on New Year’s Eve. It’s the perfect time to decide to be an artist with a trained visual memory and to begin the simple process of making it so.
Your Year of Memory Drawing
Don’t let the fact that it’s not New Years Day prevent you from getting serious about memory drawing. Whether you follow the exercises given in The Memory Drawing Course Book or do it all on your own, resolve now to make this year, your year of memory drawing. You’ll not regret it.