Drawing by N Wait, Nov 2015, Prospect Park

Drawing by N Wait, Nov 2015, Prospect Park

It seems that most people I’ve met who say they are no good at drawing, usually admit to having been told this by a teacher at school when they were very young. It’s a shame we tend to grow up fulfilling other’s expectations of our abilities, or comparing ourselves to others, usually to our own detriment. Because there was a girl in my class who could draw brilliantly, I naturally assumed I’d never make it as an artist since she was obviously so much better than I was. And so art did not become my first career.

I was smarter by my late twenties, and knew that if I applied myself and practiced all the time, I would be able to make pictures look the way I wanted them to look. But now there was another hurdle—trusting myself to paint from my imagination.

 

Tree bed on 3rd St., Park Slope, by N Wait 2015

Tree bed on 3rd St., Park Slope, by N Wait 2015

When I think of the ease I drew on my imagination as a child, trusting whatever came through, and what barriers I found in my way by the time I was thirty!

The drawings we make as children are true pictures of how we see ourselves in the world and should never be judged, for it would be like judging a fingerprint. Or better still, an imprint of the soul. All the information is there, for those that have eyes to see. Years later I can still recall the childhood drawings of my sister and brother as a perfect representation of how their personalities would unfold.

 

8th St., Park Slope, by N Wait 2015

8th St., Park Slope, by N Wait 2015

Mine too, of course. I’ve based my life-story on the drawings I did as a child. Or perhaps I should say my inner-life story, for that is what they were. It took courage to be so free in adulthood, but I got there in the end. I had to live alone in order to do it, and it often felt I was sacrificing a fulfilling outer life in the process, but I kept at it because it felt like a soul mission.

I am currently finishing up my second memoir of The Nancy Who Drew series, the book in which I tell the story of how and why I became an artist and how it changed my life. In those days, especially once I got over my fear of painting from my imagination, I painted huge canvases as if to proclaim to the world this is how I feel inside. My paintbrush was like one of those metal detectors combing the surface, hoping to find a treasure beneath.

 

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8th St., Park Slope, by N Wait 2015

The story is about the treasure I found, and how it freed me. And now I can now paint and draw small, sketchbook-size pictures of the world around me once again. Which is why this blog is sprinkled with drawings of the last few months. Because now I see how focusing on the small particulars of the outer visible world, can also reflect a deeper insight to the world within. For as I draw the outer appearance, the lines I make pick up the feelings, the energy of the subject. I don’t do this consciously; it simply comes through. As simply and naturally as my childhood drawings “came through.” And it’s how I stay in touch with that magical world we never have to leave behind…

 

 

 

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…once we see there is a bridge…

For more of my paintings and drawings of Park Slope, please visit my facebook page, Painting Park Slope ~

 

 

 

© Nancy Wait 2015

 

Originally posted on nancywait.com on Nov 11, 2015

 

 

Nancy Wait is an artist a writer, a writing coach/editor, and author of the memoir “The Nancy Who Drew, The Memoir That Solved A Mystery.” She is a former actress (stage, film and TV) in the UK under the name of Nancie Wait. She hosted the blog talk radio show “Art and Ascension,” and more recently, “Inspirational Storytellers.” Nancy is currently at work on the sequel to her memoir, “The Nancy Who Drew the Way Home,” to be published in 2016.

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