I Can't Draw


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“I cannot draw”, many people tell me. And I don’t believe them. What they probably mean is, “I cannot draw well.”

Published in: Business, Technology, Art & Photos

I Can't Draw

  1. 1. Jurgen Appelo writer, speaker, entrepreneur... www.jurgenappelo.com
  2. 2. Get my new book for FREE! m30.me/ss
  3. 3. “I cannot draw”, many people tell me. And I don’t believe them.
  4. 4. What they probably mean is, “I cannot draw well.”
  5. 5. OK, sure. That I can believe. I cannot draw well either.
  6. 6. My illustrations of people look like water balloons dressed in rags…
  7. 7. handed down by the Red Cross.
  8. 8. And the cars I sketch are usually mistaken for cardboard boxes…
  9. 9. carried by flying saucers.
  10. 10. My trees are good.
  11. 11. I like sketching trees.
  12. 12. Trees are cool.
  13. 13. I like all topics where I can squeeze in a tree or two.
  14. 14. But you won’t hear me saying, “I cannot draw.”
  15. 15. Because obviously I can.
  16. 16. Look, it’s easy. Here’s a hand and a pen,
  17. 17. and here’s paper. The hand moves the pen across the paper, and…
  18. 18. tadaaaa! We have a drawing.
  19. 19. Enter any room of 5-year olds, and ask those kids,
  20. 20. “How many of you can draw?”
  21. 21. I’m sure you will see all the hands go up.
  22. 22. Now enter a room of 18-year olds, and ask them,
  23. 23. “How many of you can draw?”
  24. 24. It is likely you will see only one or two brave hands.
  25. 25. How is that possible? Where did those kids lose the power…
  26. 26. to move a pen across a piece of paper?
  27. 27. On bathroom walls I have seen…
  28. 28. slogans,
  29. 29. phone numbers,
  30. 30. and fertility symbols.
  31. 31. Surely, they can add at least a tree?
  32. 32. The problem is, most people assume that you’re asking,
  33. 33. “How many of you can draw well?” But that is not the question.
  34. 34. To organize your thoughts on paper, nobody requires you to draw well.
  35. 35. To communicate an idea to others, they are not expecting you to draw well.
  36. 36. For inspiring an audience with a story, they are not expecting you to draw well.
  37. 37. They all just appreciate it when you draw something.
  38. 38. Even more so when you have a silly illustration of a stupid dog…
  39. 39. or a lucky cat somewhere in your story.
  40. 40. Next time, don’t say, “I cannot draw”.
  41. 41. It’s probably more accurate to say, “I don’t draw.”
  42. 42. And that problem is easily fixed, with a hand,
  43. 43. a pen,
  44. 44. and some paper.
  45. 45. And when you’re sketching something, to capture some notes,
  46. 46. to express a story,
  47. 47. or to inspire people,
  48. 48. it’s OK to say, “Sorry, I cannot draw well.”
  49. 49. We don’t mind. Because neither can we.
  50. 50. Don’t worry about it. Just add a tree.