If You Can Drive a Car You Can Learn to Draw

Anyone who can drive a car can learn to draw. Both activate the left and right hemispheres of the brain and stimulate them to work together. When we drive, we use our spatial, perceptual aspect to navigate the road and our analytical, discerning aspect to make safe choices. Both hemispheres working in perfect harmony!


When we draw we use exactly the same visual and mental capacities. Any activity that requires seeing, focusing and using the body, activates the right hemisphere – walking, hosing the garden, chopping vegetables, stirring risotto, knitting, sawing wood, hammering nails, driving…drawing. When you were a baby, your parents taught you how to feed yourself, how to walk, how to talk and later if they were brave, how to drive.

They did this by role modelling the activity while you watched (right hemispheric), then by explaining the process so you could understand (left hemispheric) and then you repeated it over and over with their support till you could do it yourself. You archived the process into the vast well of your unconscious mind (right hemisphere) and it magically appears at the exact moment you need it.

Driving and drawing activate similar spatial, visual and physical responses. You sit in a seat and use your hands, arms and eyes to navigate a course. With driving you and the car are on the course (road) and you can see it’s contours ahead, with drawing you are seeing the contours of an object and recording them on the course  (your piece of paper). You are using exactly the same skills.

This is a pre instruction, left hemispheric drawing done by a student who believed she wouldn’t be able to draw. After an hour and a half of instruction she drew the donkey with her right hemisphere.


The only difference between learning to drive and learning to draw (apart from the obvious ones) is to do with our beliefs. Most of us believe we can learn to drive a car because we have fantastic statistics around it – everyone learns to drive, you don’t have to have a talent for it. Most people believe they can’t learn to draw because the statistics are dismal! This has nothing to do with talent, it has to do with the simple fact that in general drawing isn’t taught. Try speaking Russian when you’ve never been taught.

I’ve shown hundreds of people how to draw. Of course there are degrees of facility and I do believe there are a few people who have an inherent facility (talent) but in general anyone who learns the skills, applies them and repeats the process, learns. The only thing that blocks the momentum is the belief that you can’t. I teach people how to manage that tendency with simple mindfulness techniques.

If you can drive a car you can learn to draw.




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