Draw Yourself Calm
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Table of Contents

Meet Amy 8

Introduction 10: What is Slow Drawing? 12; Tools and Materials 14; Weaving Slow Drawing into Your Day 16

Slow Drawing Warm-Ups 18: Intention-setting Visualisation 20; Drawing with Curiosity 22; Questions for Reflection 24; Looking for Inspiration in Natures 25

Slow Drawing Patterns 28: Slowing Down and Tuning In Through the Senses: Fan Pattern 30; Asking ‘What If...?’ Cobble Pattern 34; Be an Art Explorer: Twist Pattern 38; Where is Your Edge? Edge Pattern 42; Finding Your Own Way: Innovate 46; Don't Make Art: Chicken Scratch Pattern 50; Using Negative Space: Bend Pattern 54; Locating Your Breath: Exhale Pattern 58; How Gently Can You Draw? Milkweed Pattern 62; Playing with Repetition and Variation: Coil Pattern 66; Focus on Going Slow: Bloom Pattern 70; Procuring Patience: Dot Clouds Pattern 74; Listening In: Fish Pattern 80; You Deserve Creative Time: Cracked Pattern 84; Drawing Inspiration from Nature: Lichen Pattern 88; Connection and Disconnection: Cells Pattern 92; Looking Deeply at Nature: Kelp Pattern 96; What Feels Good to Draw? Squiggle Pattern 100; Making Space for the Imagination: Flock Pattern 104; Let Your Hand Surf the Ocean: Wave Pattern 110; The Comfort of Round, Repetitive Forms: Mussel Pattern 114; Getting in the Zone: Rice Pattern 118; Find What Piques Your Interest: Beneath Pattern 122; Weaving in Ink: Cloth Pattern 126; Room to Explore: Wander Pattern 132

Creative Cues: What to Do with Your Slow Drawings 136: The Beauty of Imperfection 140; Index 142; Acknowledgements 144; Resources 144

About the Author

Amy Maricle is based in Massachusetts, US, and is an artist and trained art therapist with a certification in Traumatic Stress Studies and Sensory Motor Arousal Regulation Treatment. She teaches people the art of slowing down to create playful, meaningful art. Amy blogs and teaches classes online and her writing and art have been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Psych Central, Art Journaling magazine, Brush magazine and Spirituality & Health Online. Visit her website, www.mindfulartstudio.com

Reviews

The antidote or at least the reprieve from the daily stresses of life. I’m loving this book. It’s beautifully designed and printed. Really nice quality. The instruction is clear and I find it very accessible for me. It’s a tool of both great simplicity and complexity together and as I create, I decide where I want to go with each pattern. Do I just need some calming time with guidance and no decisions? Then I can follow the pattern prompt. Do I want to dig further to see what arises in and for me? Amy guides you along, opening up our ideas, and gently questioning.

I don’t always know what I need until I begin with some slow drawing time but Amy has you covered in this book. Benefits I have found beyond my gratefully received calm are also improved focus, openness, dropping the idea of perfection, observation, time for free thinking and flow, and respite from the many challenges of each day. Taking the time in this practice really calms my (chronically ill) central nervous system making it an important asset in my health needs. What a bonus. The pricing is great. Affordable and yet of higher value than the cost! If there was something I didn’t like about the book I would include it but I’ve not found it yet! Definitely recommend.
*Amazon Customer Review*

I was lucky enough to be given a copy of this book and I'm so grateful as it's been a revelation. The basic idea is to slow down the act of drawing so it becomes a mindful exercise. This allows you to experience the pen moving across the page, to watch each shape being formed. It takes some getting used to but once you concentrate on the act of drawing, rather than producing a drawing, you forget about perfection and instead enjoy what you are producing. The patterns provided in the book are just a stepping stone, or gentle hand holding, there is just so much scope for where you can go with this material. I have never found doodling particularly meditative as I have to keep on reminding myself how to draw the patterns but with this book it doesn't matter. That's both the joy and the drive behind this wonderful book. If you don't think you are artistic I would almost guarantee you'll love the images you produce following the guidance in this book, I certainly did and I've only just scratched the surface of what's on offer.
*Amazon Customer Review*

Just back from holiday, unpacking and usual yucky catch-up stuff, this was waiting on the mat. I couldn’t resist a quick flick through - oh my word! It’s beautifully printed, a delight to hold, intuitive and accessible, jam packed with advice, tips and design ideas. Amy truly is the master of her craft and shares her wealth of knowledge in this affordable book. Do yourself a favour - buy it and ‘draw yourself calm’ - my money says you won’t regret it.
*Amazon Customer Review*

For someone that gets quite stressed at work this is an absolute dream of a book, I wasn’t to sure to begin with but found myself immersed into a world of slow drawing… I actually couldn’t wait to get home to switch off and enjoy a bit of me time with my pencil and pad.. easy to follow exercises and for someone that is not an experienced drawer. I would highly recommend
*Amazon Customer Review*

An interesting book - a book designed to teach you how to relax while being creative - taking the stress away from drawing. It starts with mindfulness exercises - creative meditation, allowing your body and mind to flow on the page. If like me you get a bit stressed and tight when drawing this book will help set you free. Have a go.
*Amazon Customer Review*

With all the stress of life, we each need to find ways of slowing down. Drawing simple, repetitive shapes relaxes the brain; attention flows from sources of stress to centre on putting pen to paper. This practical book aims to increase creativity while reducing stress.
*Machine Knitting Monthly*

I was really excited to receive this particular book 'Draw yourself calm by Amy Maricle' because it encourages everyone to get creative, you don't need any prior experience. I often speak with people in store who want to try something creative but don't feel confident enough and worry that what they create won't be 'good enough'. This particular style of art is a great place to start. Though this book is called 'Draw yourself calm' it is not about drawing detailed pictures, it is instead encouraging you to take part in what the author calls 'Slow drawing' which I would say is like mark making, similar to doodling or Zen tangling in a way. Mark Making is one of the most basic forms of art, which we are encouraged to do from a very young age, as soon as our little hands can hold a pencil, we begin the journey. Unfortunately, a lot of us as we get older forget that mark making can be fun, and as this book points out, therapeutic, and so we don't do it enough. It is something that all ages can do and enjoy. I love that this book is encouraging us to get back into it in a new mindful way.  Another great thing about the activities included in this book is that they require a limited number of materials, so even those on a tight budget can have a go at them. If you have a pen and some scraps of paper you can give them a go. If you want to take your artwork up a notch then you could choose to invest in some of the recommended art materials detailed in the book. The author, Amy Maricle, is a qualified art therapist who is keen to promote mindfulness throughout the book so it has some great information on how taking part in the activities will help you de-stress and keep calm. There is a combination of full step-by-step activities and some guided suggested patterns to have a go at. There are plenty of photos and example pieces to inspire you too. At the end of the book, the author even gives you some tips and ideas on what you could do with your finished 'Slow Drawings' artwork which I think is fantastic. If you are totally new to art but want to give it a go, especially drawing of any kind, then I would recommend this book as a great starting point. You can take the skills you learn from it and progress on to more detailed drawings from these great basic skills. If you are looking for a book that will reignite your creative spark then again I think this book would be good. It takes you right back to basics and gets you to open up your mind and be free with your mark making which is essentially the start of all art.
*Betty's Books*

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