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Leana Delle’s recent podcast—her interview with Betty Edwards—has been heard by people around the world, Girlfriend, We Need To Talk! … and the response has been wonderful! Read a few of the listeners’ comments below. And tune in, if you haven’t heard it yet!

"I admire Betty Edwards…just thanks to a person who has told the world that you do not need talent to draw!  The fact of taking something simple to the sublime, many have been initiated into the world of art by it, for sure.”  Diego Faris–Suarez

"I came to Betty’s book via my acting teacher, Lesly Kahn, who recommends it highly to help open up your creative mind – and she couldn’t have been more right!  I got this book on her recommendation, but didn’t have much hope; my sister is the drawing artist of the family.  But, lo and behold, as I followed her instructions, I saw I could do it too!  And my teacher was right, not only did it free my creative mind, but it enhanced my confidence, and . . . I don’t know, just made me feel good.  So thanks to Betty for creating this book.  I can’t wait to continue on with it as well as hopefully pass it to my daughter one day.  All the best to you and her.”  ~ Beth Fraser, Actress – California

Betty Edwards, author of Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain

"All my respect and consideration to Dr. Betty Edwards!  It has been an honour to listen to this interview.  I cherish so much her book, it is a precious gem!  I thank her from the bottom of my heart for her work and dedication, and I am wishing along with her that more kids today experience a moment like she did in fourth grade!  We all should fight for this and spread the knowledge.  I wish so much that I was encouraged more when I was a kid to pursue this love for drawing.  I used to draw as a kid and easily reached the drawing state, I wasn’t even aware but it was so peaceful, quiet and blissful but our drawing classes, sport, music were replaced many times with math or other disciplines and even when they weren’t, I was having this thought, this idea implemented in the back of my head, that drawing is a waste of time.  I still pursued it but didn’t have the knowledge and strength to thrive, and at some point, I said to myself that I’m not even good at it so why bother anyway.  We need to change this for future generations!  We need to let everyone know that drawing is for everyone!  Anyone can draw and it’s healthy, it’s the best therapy for mind and soul!  Thanks to Betty a million times.  I feel blessed for finding her work.”  ~ Andra – Romania

 "Betty Edwards has helped unlock the fear of sketching in design for both myself and our design students – and personally sparked curiosity about how we observe and record . . . hugely indebted; thank you.”  ~ Sally Daniels – United Kingdom

"This book was recommended to me by a bookseller, and it revolutionized my technique, my way of drawing and erased my fears.  I was blown away by her method.  Many thanks to Betty Edwards.”  ~ Sab Simon – France

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Betty was interviewed recently by Leana Delle for her podcast.  The discussion is fascinating and engaging.  Tune in!  Click here for the podcast online: Girlfriend, We Need To Talk!

Betty Edwards, author of Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain

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This is an excellent article on a subject close to my heart! 

  ~ Betty

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In the 19th century, drawing was a common part of every school’s curriculum.

As shown in this article, The Guardian: Why Drawing Needs to be a Curriculum Essential, it appears that the British are far ahead of the United States in recognizing the value of teaching children how to draw—not to produce artists but to improve thinking and problem-solving. 

In the article, the author Anita Taylor, says:

 “As a primary visual language, essential for communication and expression, drawing is as important as the development of written and verbal skills.  The need to understand the world through visual means would seem more acute than ever; images transcend the barriers of language, and enhance communications in an increasingly globalized world.”

 My own lifelong ambition is to see drawing reinstated in our schools, from early education on—to teach our children the twin skills of reading and drawing to improve both reading comprehension and creative problem solving.  I’d love to hear your thoughts on this subject! Just leave a comment or question below.

 ~ Betty Edwards

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day!  It’s your lucky day! To celebrate, take 17% off anything in the DRSB Store, today and for the next week, through Sunday, March 24, 2019.  Have you been thinking about learning to draw?  Do you need drawing materials and tools, designed by Betty Edwards? Here’s a chance to purchase the DRSB Artist's Portfolio, usually $129.99 but only $107.89 (+ tax & shipping) during this special St. Paddy’s Day sale!  Or how about the two-hour DRSB Video with Betty Edwards herself teaching the seven core lessons of Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain?  Usually $35, it is only $29.05 (+ tax & shipping) during this special sale from March 17 to 24, 2019.  Click here and start shopping! Just use the code LUCKY when checking out from the DRSB Store.

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In the 19th and early 20th century, book cover design reached its zenith.  For pure pleasure, look at these gorgeous book covers!  The Art of Book Covers: 1820-1914  

Anyone who loves visual literacy will appreciate the creativity and originality of these works of art.  “A totally new artistic space was opened up.  … illustrators and designers flourished, producing a range of covers as eclectic in aesthetic approach as the myriad contents they fronted.”  I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

~ Betty Edwards

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When my granddaughters, Sophie and Francesca, were seven and five years old, my daughter Anne and I spent many afternoons with the girls conducting “Play School.”  We spent hours on cursive writing—the alphabet, the girls’ names, and the old-fashioned exercises of lines of large linked circles and slanted vertical lines.  They loved it and the lessons stayed with them right through their school years. 

Today, the girls—now 17 and 19—have beautiful, readable handwriting. But according to the letter here, In Defense of Cursive!, written by Maine House of Representatives Heidi Sampson, perhaps those afternoon lessons had other positive effects.  Representative Sampson is not just writing letters to editors.  She is introducing legislation to restore cursive writing to Maine’s elementary schools.

We salute the efforts in Maine to bring cursive writing back to schools, and we hope that every state will follow suit!

~ Betty Edwards



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Many of our readers have asked me for a full-palette list of recommended pigments.  A visit to an art supply store can confront a beginning painter with a daunting array of hundreds of tubes of paint, whether acrylic, oil, or watercolor, some with alluring names like “Horizon Blue” or “Rose Pink.”  Resist the temptation! Below is a list of basic pigments that will provide you a full range of pigments to use in mixtures or as pure hues.

If you’re just beginning to paint, you might decide to start with a very limited palette, say, with Cadmium Yellow Medium, Cadmium Red Medium, Ultramarine Blue, Mars Black, and Titanium White.  Then, as you see the need for an expanded palette, you can start adding in other pigments from the list.

In terms of purchasing pigments, here are some general suggestions:

  1. Never buy sets.  At least half will be junk pigments.

  2. Be prepared to pay.  High-priced pigments are among the few things remaining where if you pay more, you really do get better quality.

  3. Stick with known manufacturers.  Windsor Newton, Liquitex, and Golden are quite reliable.  As you can imagine, there is a lot of junk paint out there.  How would one know good from awful?  The paint tubes all look the same.

  4. Buy 6 oz. tubes, except for white and black, then buy 10 or 12 oz.  Smaller tubes are very wasteful and frustrating.

  5. Do not buy pigments with the word "Hue" on the tube.  These pigments are watered-down with fillers.

  6. Always buy “Artist Quality” and avoid anything labeled “Student Quality.”

  7. Acrylics have some mixture problems, and you will no doubt later move to oils, which have fewer mixture problems.  However, for beginners, acrylics are best because they are easier to handle, being water-based. 

    Best Paint Starter List:
  • Cadmium Yellow Medium

  • Cadmium Orange

  • Cadmium Red Medium

  • Quinacridone Magenta

  • Prism Violet

  • Dioxazine Purple

  • Ultramarine Blue

  • Thalo Blue

  • Permanent Green Medium

  • Viridian Green Hue (Only "Hue" worth buying)

  • Thalo Green

  • Cerulean Blue

 Earth Colors:
  • Burnt Sienna

  • Burnt Umber

  • Yellow Ochre


Best Basic Colors:
  • Titanium White

  • Flake White

  • Mars Black


Later, you may want to add specialty pigments, but this list will allow you a full range of color.  The same list will work for oil pigments. 

Keep in mind that no pigments are ideal.  They all have their quirks and drawbacks.  For example, Permanent Green Medium and Viridian Green are very dark, straight from the tube.  However, if you add white to lighten, the color goes dull.  Then you try adding a little cadmium yellow to brighten the color, and the result is not the green you want.  So you add a little Thalo Blue, and the color starts to go dead.  You try something else, and suddenly, MUD.

Click the link below to read an interesting article about how artists’ pigments are manufactured.  The company, in this case, is a small, highly specialized, and highly regarded producer of artists’ pigments.  The process is complicated, time consuming, and remarkably precise!  Inside the Painstaking Process of Making Oil Paint

Happy painting! And Happy Holidays!

~ Betty Edwards

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Celebrate the holiday season 2018 with a Gift of Art!

Take 20% off ANY items in the DRSB Store—from now through midnight on December 31st! Just order DRSB Portfolios, DVD, or individual drawing tools through the website, and when checking out, use the code HOLIDAY2018. A 20% discount will automatically be taken.

Betty Edwards, Brian Bomeisler, and all of us at DRSB wish you and yours the happiest of holiday seasons!


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One of the benefits of our website and this blog is that readers from around the world have an easy way to get in touch with me. I love hearing how they were affected by Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain. When I wrote the book way back in 1978-79, I had no idea the ideas would take hold and have such reach. It is very heartwarming. Below the photo (with my son Brian and daughter Anne) is a letter from Nicole, who recently wrote to me. Thank you, Nicole! And many thanks to everyone who has read my book over these nearly 40 years and felt it enhanced their life in some small way.

~ Betty

Brian Bomeisler, Betty Edwards, and Anne Bomeisler Farrell

 Dear Betty,

I am a 48-year-old artist with four children, and a substitute Art teacher. I see how difficult it is for children to relate at all to what they perceive, how to process their perception, how to connect, and how to relate to it from their own genuine point of view. They also do not know that their perspective is a genuine and a to-be-developed one.

I am happy to write these lines to you after I found you alive at your blessed age - according to the information my smartphone made available for me. I would like to take the opportunity to thank you. A copy of your book on how to learn to draw, based on the right hemisphere was given to me by my godmother when I was 15 or 16. The German title read: Garantiert zeichnen lernen. This book and the exercises in it helped me to survive many isolated, boring days of my childhood, and what I learned in it stayed with me and alive. I still relate to it in courses and classes, although I learned a lot of other stuff later.

In that way you influenced my life in a significant way;I still have some of the drawings I made back in 1986 and later. So, I hope you are well and receive my lines of gratitude. All the best for you and all the others who pay their tribute to the call of our time.

Resist, conserve, hope.
Nicole D.

___________________________________

Dear Nicole,

 Thank you so much for your lovely and very touching email message.  It’s hard to describe how much it means to me to know that my book has had a good effect on someone’s life.  You were fortunate to have a godmother who was so thoughtful and insightful to give you the book, and also fortunate that, as a teenager, you took the time and made the effort to learn the basics of drawing.  What fun that you still have some of the early drawings!

 Your mention of your brief teaching experience and children’s lack of perceptual skills reinforces my strong conviction that we must overhaul our educational system to include again teaching children how to draw.  As you infer in your message, this may be a part of “the call of our time.”  I do believe that there is hope that change will come.

With all best wishes,

Betty Edwards

____________________________

Dear Betty,

Thank you for your timely response. One thing I forgot to include in my sentence about the children is their difficulty to articulate themselves - in writing, drawing, and eventually in addressing another person with grace and dignity. They are not aware of their lack of form and respect. 

I agree to what you say, Betty, about integrating drawing into children’s education to be a very good idea.  If I may share my thoughts and learning a bit here - on the paper, using pencil, and color you get a direct response of how you 'treat' it. You can see the difference between a line where the one who draws it is present, and a line that is like a symbol of a line. If you are there on the sheet with your attention, or if you are somewhere else: it is visible! Like you wrote, when one uses the symbol of an eye rather than looking at the actual eye, then the code can be decoded easily; but what was there to be seen stays invisible on the work as a  result. 

From familiarizing myself with these kind of stereotypes in drawing or playing during my courses in Intuitive Education, I got a model to observe my own social behaviour and the distinction between my idea about myself and what I actually did. One becomes able to create alternative solutions that are more agreeable. Intuitive Education (which I know and work from for more than a decade now) comes from a Waldorf School in Sweden and was taught mainly by Pär Ahlbom (singing, playing, exercising) and Merete Lövlie (painting). I am sharing my experience with you here - I hope not in too much detail.

Anyway, my best wishes to you. I'll visit with my parents tomorrow, they are 90 and 84, and they will be pleased to hear that we communicated. It is good to know that you are still on track to be interested in the future. What gives you such hope? I have hope, too.  We are not such a little number.

Yours sincerely,

Nicole D.

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