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A Small Group of Mostly Affable Circles: Blind Drawings, Friendship, and Pith

An evening of close girlfriends enjoying an art night morphs into something much deeper and more insightful when these friends spontaneously write about their drawings a year later. Author Anne Jackson has combined these drawings and writings in a delightfully crafted book that shows what comes from the nuanced depths of ourselves when we draw without seeing and write without thinking. This book is not simply a book of mysterious and funny drawings sistered with writings of soul searches, poetry, and more than a bit of the absurd. It is a book that illustrates the magic of art, the sweetness of friendship, and the joy that is supposedly hidden from us comes to life with ease and laughter. 'It is a wonderful activity. My seven year old son, Nigel, had been refusing to draw for weeks, saying that he wasn't good enough. This was getting really frustrating for both of us. After reading Jackson's book, I decided to try blind drawing when my husband and daughter also started saying they were not good enough at drawing. I grabbed paper and markers and more than an hour later, everyone was still engaged and our kitchen walls were covered with art work that made everyone feel proud. We had so much fun. It took the pressure off 'being good' and turned it into pure joy. I wouldn't say there was cheating but certainly my family scaled it to their particular needs. Nigel enjoyed sneaking one eye open. Eyes open, eyes closed, I didn't care. My whole family was laughing and drawing and not caring if it was 'good.' It was liberating.' -Ashana Larsen, writer; teacher; photographic stylist; self-directed learning advocate; and home school mother and teacher who has now added Blind Drawing to her curriculum

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