I recently unearthed what may be my earliest surviving drawing…at least that I’m willing to show. Ironically, it’s a dinosaur. Apparently I drew this at age 3 and a half, while watching my older brother draw dinosaurs for a school project.
With my next book being about a girl who sees herself as a dinosaur, I thought it was fitting that I share it.
When speaking to groups, I often point out that young children- when drawing, singing, dancing, or doing whatever floats their boat-don't care whether what they’re doing is worthy of publication or slot on America’s Got Talent.
At that age we all draw, sing, dance, etc. simply because it’s fun…it feels good. Somewhere along the way, we begin to pay attention to criticism from others and start to become critical of ourselves.
There is nothing wrong with this, as it tests our love of a particular activity, and helps to spur growth in a talent.
At the same time, it signals the end of doing something (bad or good) purely out of the joy of doing it.
As an exercise, try tapping into to that mindset, when you were 3 and a half-completely free from any critical thinking-and create something simply because it’s fun…because it feels good.