Mental Health

Self-care through art: 4 easy tutorials to soothe your mind

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During my year of self-healing, one of the best things I did was taking the time to explore more artistic and creative projects. Who would have thought that emotional self-care could be achieved through something as simple as doodling a mountain or painting a flower?

Turns out, it can. And you don’t need t be “good” at “art stuff”.

Art, creativity (in all of its forms) and self-expression are such powerful healers for your heart and your soul! But as adults we sometimes believe we are “just not creative people” or “have no artistic talent“. We lose curiosity and stop exploring fun, artistic projects.

Well, I’m here to tell you that this is bull**!

Put your phone away for 20 minutes and soothe your soul with these easy, artistic exercises. These tutorials are simple, fun, and will, I hope, inspire you to at least try and soothe your exhausted mind with art and self-expression.

Even if you believe yo have no creative talent and think that you are bad at “art stuff”, you will be amazed by what you can do with an open-mind, the right tutorial and teacher, and little bit of focus.

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1. Draw a perfect circle (with shading) with Brandon Schaefer

Creative exercise
From Left to right: attempt # 1 (eww); attempt # 2 (ew); attempt # 3 (yawza!)

I spent most of my life convinced I was completely hopeless when it came to drawing. That is until I came across Brandon Schaefer’s tutorials and decided to give drawing another try.

He is so calm, helpful and encouraging, and he really makes an effort to simplify the techniques he teaches. He made me believe I could do the things he was talking about. So I tried, and I did!

I drew a super simple circle. As you can see from the picture above, my first two attempts were rubbish but by the third one, I felt like a superhero!

Learn to Draw with Brandon Schaefer

Who knew I could draw!

If you are a complete beginner when it comes to drawing, check out this tutorial on shading techniques. I guarantee you will not regret those 17 minutes.

2. Doodle simple mountains with Shayda Campbell

I LOVE Shayda’s YouTube channel. Not only is she Canadian (which means she’s awesome, obviously), but her channel is pure inspiration.

She is one of the YouTubers who contributed to reawaking my (previously non-existent) creative side. Her voice, her watercolor, craft, drawing, bujo tutorials, her décor, way of life… No wonder her YouTube channel keeps growing!

But one of my favorite tutorials of hers is the one where she shows us how to doodle mountains. Seriously, it’s so simple, but the results are incredible!

Mountain Doodles For Beginners with Shayda Campbell

I also love her tutorial on How to paint watercolor leaves, and the one about watercolor flowers.

Had I known you could make something so beautiful, and yet so simple, so fast I would have started sooner. Now I doodle mountains e-v-e-r-y-w-h-e-r-e. Too bad her channel wasn’t around when I was a kid.

Oh well, she’s here now and it’s never too late to learn or to explore your creative side. What matters is that you try.

Will you try?

3. Discover watercolors with Makoccino

Ah, Makoccino. She taught me that creativity has little to do with talent and more to do with practice.


My first watercolor masterpiece
My very first watercolor masterpiece

I think I spent the last 20 years saying (whining) “I have noo artistic talent”. Well, believe you me, I don’t say that anymore.

It’s hard (impossible!) to pick just one of her videos to show you here. I’ll try two ????

So this first one is awesome because she breaks down all your mental barriers while showing you super simple techniques you can start applying even as a beginner who knows nothing. But this video is more inspiring than it is a tutorial per se.

Tips For Watercolor Paintings For Beginners with Makoccino

This next tutorial is one of my favorites. I’ve watched it many times while trying to apply the techniques she shows. It’s simple and yet challenging enough, and the results can (potentially) be gorgeous.

Easy Watercolor Painting Ideas for Beginners with Makoccino

Seriously though, I never thought I would one day be painting with watercolors. Twelve months ago I barely knew what watercolors were!

And now I can doodle, draw simple shapes with shadows, and paint watercolor leaves!

4. Learn the basics of calligraphy and hand lettering with Amanda Lee

This is not a skill I had thought about, but I came across Amanda’s hand lettering tutorials one day, and I was impressed.

Calligraphy and Hand Lettering For Beginners with AmandaRachLee

I wish I could tell you that I write like this on my hand-made cards, but I don’t. I haven’t reached that level of talent and mastery over the skill yet, unfortunately. And I prefer focusing on watercolor for now.

But definitely check out her tutorial! Oh, and just use the markers and pens you have at home for now. It’ll work just fine in the beginning.

You can practice while commuting, on the train or the bus, or when you’re bored at your desk (oops, did I say that out loud?).

Final thoughts

Don’t buy into the narrative that you have no artistic talent. You might believe that you are not good at art, but that may simply be the result of you never devoting time and attention to actually doing creative stuff.

So let these 4 easy creative and artistic exercises inspire you, and motivate you to grab your pencil, pen, or brush, and get creating!

Related post: Mental health art project and How to make Christmas cards out of fall and winter leaves?

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About Steph

I am a personal growth/self-management enthusiast. I was able to completely transform my life using everything I share here. I hope this blog helps you transform yours as well.
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