Semi-Blind Contour Drawing Exercise

In this blog post, we’re going to explore a unique and enjoyable drawing exercise that can help you improve your skills and expand your artistic horizons. Get ready to challenge yourself by drawing with the opposite hand you normally use, and even experimenting with different tools like watercolors and paintbrushes.

Are you looking to boost your artistic skills and unleash your creativity? Sometimes, all it takes is a simple change in perspective to unlock new avenues of growth.

Video demo

The Opposite Hand Drawing Exercise

We’re creatures of habit, and we often rely on our dominant hand for most tasks, including drawing. But what happens when we switch things up and start using our non-dominant hand? The results can be surprisingly rewarding. This exercise isn’t about creating masterpieces; it’s about stretching your creative muscles and fostering a deeper connection with your art.

Benefits of Opposite Hand Drawing

  1. Enhanced Focus: When you draw with your non-dominant hand, you naturally slow down and pay closer attention to the details. This heightened focus can lead to improved precision and a deeper understanding of your subject.
  2. Increased Creativity: Drawing with your non-dominant hand forces you to approach your work from a different perspective. This can spark new creative ideas and solutions that you might not have considered otherwise.
  3. Improved Motor Skills: The exercise challenges your motor skills and coordination. Over time, you’ll notice increased dexterity in both hands, contributing to more nuanced and controlled drawings.
  4. Embracing Imperfection: Since you’re not accustomed to using your non-dominant hand, your drawings might not be as polished as usual. This exercise helps you let go of perfectionism and embrace imperfections as part of the artistic process.
Try This Semi-Blind Contour Drawing Exercise
Try This Semi-Blind Contour Drawing Exercise

Getting Started: The Opposite Hand Technique

  1. Choose Your Tools: While you can use a pencil, don’t limit yourself to just that. Experiment with different tools like charcoal, ink, or even watercolors for an added layer of challenge and excitement.
  2. Select Your Subject: Start with a simple subject for your first attempt. Objects with basic shapes or contours work well. As you gain confidence, you can tackle more complex subjects.
  3. Set Up Your Workspace: Arrange your materials in a way that feels comfortable. Don’t forget to have some spare paper nearby for warm-up sketches.
  4. Warm-Up: Begin with a few warm-up sketches to get accustomed to using your non-dominant hand. Feel the texture of the paper and the movement of the tool.
  5. Dive In: Now, it’s time to create! Use deliberate and controlled strokes to outline your subject. Don’t worry about perfection—focus on capturing the essence.

Adding Watercolors to the Mix

For an added layer of challenge and visual appeal, consider incorporating watercolors into your opposite hand drawing exercise. Watercolors require a delicate touch and a keen understanding of how water interacts with pigment.

  1. Prepare Your Palette: Choose a few colors that complement your subject. Keep a jar of water handy for rinsing your brush.
  2. Wet-on-Wet Technique: Start by wetting the paper with clean water. Then, dip your brush into a color of your choice and let it flow onto the damp surface. Watch as the colors blend in unexpected and beautiful ways.
  3. Layering and Detailing: Use thin layers of color to build up depth and dimension. With your non-dominant hand, you’ll need to be patient and intentional in your strokes.

Watch the Video Demonstration

To help you better understand the process and the potential results, I’ve created a video demonstration (above) where I take on this opposite hand drawing exercise using watercolors and a paintbrush. You’ll witness the initial uncertainty, the gradual adaptation, and the ultimate satisfaction of creating something unique.

Final Thoughts

In the world of art, growth often comes from stepping outside of your comfort zone and exploring new techniques. The opposite hand drawing exercise offers a playful yet effective way to do just that.

As you challenge yourself to create with your non-dominant hand and experiment with tools like watercolors, you’ll discover hidden talents, develop a deeper connection with your art, and open doors to fresh creative possibilities. So, gather your materials, embrace imperfection, and embark on this exciting artistic journey!