Andria Burchett Beech Tree Buzz newsletter beechtreestudio.com fine art in colored pencil
colored pencil in primary colors by Andria Burchett
The Benefits of Distance Gazing
There was a discussion last week in an evening class about how important it is to look up from our computer screens, cell phones and yes, our drawing tables. Apparently our eyes need the "practice" of seeing not only what is up close, but also what is far away. I never thought about that.
It dawned on me that this is an important reason why I love to gaze across our back yard and into the wetlands. I always thought that it was just "good for my soul" (which it is!), but I'm sure that it is physically restful for my eyes, as well. According to Mindfulword we should be staring out into the distance for at least 10 minutes every day.
Incidentally, this must also be true for our hearing. Our ears need a respite from traffic noise, TV ads and constant conversation. It's healthy to be intentionally still for a while, allowing the quiet to give us time to reflect, to prepare, to anticipate....to daydream.
It drives my husband crazy when someone in an airport or on a sidewalk is so engrossed with his hand-held device that he abruptly stops or turns, causing other people to run right into him. The culprit is completely oblivious to the consequences of his narrow focus. Sometimes we do the same with the mini-crises in our lives. We must remember to look beyond just what is in front of us and find rest in what's ahead.
I know that many artists fall into that "zen" state when the creativity is flowing and time dissipates and all of a sudden it is eight o'clock at night and the dog is still waiting to be walked. It's a wonderful feeling to be so artistically productive and energized. Just look up every once in a while, and for the health of your eyes and your spiritual refreshment, go look out the window and gaze into the distance. Dream a little.