For our next little sketchbook exercise, I recommend something reflective. This is reflective, as in meditative (you have to think about it), but more specifically, it produces a symmetrically mirrored image around a center line.
I love asymmetrical art, which is a bit wonky and off kilter. I find excitement in my abstract art by thwarting whatever demands balance. Often however, balance can be exactly what you are looking for, like in your body, in commercial exchange, or in your relationships. This exercise is like that, celebrating balance as closely as you can achieve it.
This exercise trains your hand to reproduce whatever you drew on one side in its exact reflection on the other side. This is harder than it looks. Your hand will usually prefer to do it the first way, and training it to go in the opposite direction is often surprisingly challenging. That’s why it is a good stretching exercise. Plus, the results can be interesting.
Choose a sheet of paper, a pencil, and a pen. With a ruler or straight edge, draw a line down the center of your page with the pencil. Now with the pen (so you can’t cheat and erase), whatever you draw on one side, you need to draw its exact reflection on the other side. You can see in this post the results of me doing this on three separate pages, very imperfectly!
Give it a try. Drawing ability has got to start somewhere. And while you do this, think how magnificent the idea of refection is. What are you the exact reflection of?