Colouring for Left-Brain People

If you need to know all the whys and wherefores, if you think in a logical linear way, if you make 'to do' lists all the time, if you're more attracted to words than to visuals, then you're probably a person who's governed by the left-side of their brain. Although it's the right-side of the brain that has the ability to be artistic and creative, left-brain people can contribute their fair share of artistically creative work. It's all in the art form chosen and the approach to it.

Coloring is a great art form for left-brain people to be involved in. They can use their decision-making skills to decide on color, texture and style, and their logical and planning abilities are useful in deciding the order in which to color - and even in scheduling 'coloring dates' with themselves. Their inherent neatness and sense of order will let them stay 'between the lines.'

Here are three ways for left-brain people to really enjoy the process of coloring:

1. Use color theory to select the colors to use

Color theory is a field in which the physical relationships between the colors are organized and rules have been developed for color mixing and using different colors together. The visual impacts of combining colors are a strong consideration here. The focus of color theory is a color wheel, which is a visual and logical representation of the relationships and rules, and selecting colors can become a logical and ordered process.

2. Move away from coloring realistic pictures

Faced with a realistic picture to color, left-brain people tend to focus on choosing colors that reflect that reality and to color within the lines to produce a highly recognisable picture. This is fine, but choosing instead a pattern or abstract design to work with will free these realistic constraints in a way that is not challenging or uncomfortable. In addition, choosing geometric rather than organic shapes and patterns will preserve the left-brainer's sense of order and neatness.

3. Research what you're coloring

Choosing a pattern or design that has meaning in the world enables the left-brain person to find out more about it and place it's meaning in a greater context. Mandalas are great for this. They are geometric designs that have been used for centuries to spiritually represent the cosmos and humankind's place in it. The symbols and the colors used in creating them all have meaning, and the process of coloring them, at its most profound, can be a meditative one.

So, left-brain art is possible and enjoyable, and you could stop there having let loose some artistic creativity. But why not use this opportunity to start to build a relationship with your right brain? Loosen up on one of these considerations. Bring an element of chance into your color selection (see my article Coloring - 5 ways to select colors). Choose organic patterns and designs to color. Select a design that appeals to you and don't worry about what it means or whether you're using the 'right' style or technique.

In fact, coloring is a great exercise to encourage left-brain people to start to use more of their right-brain in a very non-threatening way.

Move your coloring process from the head towards the heart.

Chris Lindsay is giving free rein to her creativity by designing mandalas for herself and others to color. She uses geometric patterns from temari, yantra and kaleidoscope designs as the starting points for her creations.

Whether you want to reduce stress, to quieten your mind, meditate or just to have fun, coloring is a great activity for all ages and all abilities.

Visit and set your artistic creativity free.

Author: Chris Lindsay
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