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Drawing with the weak hand

Artist Liza Donnelly broke her right arm, her default drawing arm, but decided to make cartoons with her left.

I broke my drawing arm. For the first time in my life I was not able to use my right hand to make art.

It slowly dawned on her in recovery how reusing her left arm made her feel like a child doodling all over again. And her work (see above) turned out refreshing. The novelty renewed her excitement about drawing.

I noticed the drawings created by my left hand were much looser, and were not always close to what I had intended. They looked more like the drawings that I had done as a child. So was this left-hand usage tapping into my original creativity?

As she recovered, she regained sympathy for her right hand while feeling compassion for her left. Yet, her ambidexterity made her realize how much superior and quicker her right was.

As I slowly started to use my right hand again, I worried about my left. Should I reassure the left hand, “Don’t worry, I’ll keep using you”?

And so while she returned to her strongest drawing arm, the new perspective nonetheless humbled the smugness of the right hand she’d been drawing with for five decades.

C’est la vie.

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By Wells Baum

Wells Baum is a daily blogger who writes about Life & Arts. He's also the author of Discvr.blog and four books.