The Power of Concentration – The New York Times


artist at work

Even in small doses, mindfulness can effect impressive changes in how we feel and think — and it does so at a basic neural level.In 2011, researchers from the University of Wisconsin demonstrated that daily meditation-like thought could shift frontal brain activity toward a pattern that is associated with what cognitive scientists call positive, approach-oriented emotional states — states that make us more likely to engage the world rather than to withdraw from it.

Source: The Power of Concentration – The New York Times

So what does this have to do with Art?  I am not a scientist, I am an artist and teacher.  But for me, I see how it connects beautifully.  When I sit down with a pencil in hand, paper ready to receive, and brain told to let go of any rouge thoughts, I am giving my brain an opportunity to go to that state of mindfulness.

And for those of you who claim to be terrible artists, it doesn’t matter how good or how bad you claim to be.  Just look at the wildly crazy grown-up coloring book industry.  Grown-ups are catching on.  It’s all about giving your brain the opportunity to be present…what a gift!