"I can't draw" - The Lie That Many of Us Tell

"I can't draw" 

Have you said that before? I know I have. And it's a lie. 

Is it a lie I actively tell? No. In fact, I believe what I say. I believe that I can't draw, that my artwork isn't skilled enough, or that I lack in creativity. But I am wrong. At a logical level, I know that I am wrong. 


When I was a child I loved to draw. I always had pieces of paper strewn around my bedroom and a stash of crayons and pencils on hand. I arrived in Kindergarten a creative and talkative little human. One day, our teacher asked us to draw something (I think I've blocked it out a little, so don't remember the exact task) and when I proudly took my work to her desk shortly after, she said that it wasn't good enough, before screwing it up and dropping it in the bin. 

Is that why I say I can't draw? Probably yes. In high school I saw my friends doing art class and thought "I wish I could do that". I look back now and wonder what stopped me. 


Over the years I have seen artworks in galleries that have puzzled me, or that I haven't connected to. I have seen others that have taken my breath away and intrigued me. Were they all perfectly drawn or painted? No. They were different. They had something about them. They told a story. 

Think about the story you tell yourself in relation to art.

Would you say to a child... you can't draw

Would you say to a child... that painting is awful

Would you say to a child... you're not very creative


I'm going to guess (given that you are an early childhood professional) that you wouldn't say any of those things. And yet we say them to ourselves and about ourselves way too often. 

Drawing of a bunny

Drawing of a "Bunny" by Saige - Aged 6

Today I want to challenge you to see they joy in creating for the sake of creating, for drawing for fun, for using a different medium to tell a story. 

Draw something

Paint something

Sculpt something

And stop saying that you can't (I promise I will too) - just enjoy the process. 

I did it - I took 3 minutes and sketched a feather. It's not perfect, but I'm okay with that. I enjoyed the process :) 

Drawing of a "feather" by Nicole - Aged 38



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