Most people can appreciate a fine Monet painting or a colorful Picasso. However, many people feel art is better left to the professionals and do not choose to create anything for themselves. What you may not realize, is that by avoiding creative expression you are depriving yourself of one of the most critical aspects of human life. Creating art will stimulate your brain and improve your overall well-being and health. Included here are a few of the reasons to pick up a paintbrush today.

Stimulate the Imagination

As you begin to think about what you want to create, you may have a set image in your head, or you may take paint to canvas and see what happens. Either way, your brain will be working to make images and recognizable symbols out of the creation. If you consider yourself artistic, indulging in this pastime can help you fine-tune your craft. If you feel that you are more into the math and science realm, stretching yourself to be artistic can stimulate your brain.

Park West Gallery, in Michigan, recently debuted an evening of “Art + Science,” wherein physicians were paired with artists who created artistic impressions of their research. Many of these doctors were early on in their careers and researching cures for Alzheimer’s or cancer. This kind of art is a beautiful blend of scientific thinking with artistic expression.

Become More Observant

Creating art will help you become more observant in your everyday life. You will look at things with a more intense gaze; accessing color, light, darkness, shape, location, distance, movement and rest. This helps activate your brain and consciously think about what you are taking in through your eyes.

6 Ways Art Benefits Everyone

Enhance Problem-Solving Skills

Art encourages looking at complex problems in a different light. You will be doing more “outside-the-box” thinking as you work on your art. It encourages approaching light and subjects in a more intent manner than you otherwise would.

Reduce Your Stress

By taking time to work with your hands and focus on a task that occupies you both physically and mentally, you can reduce your stress levels. Simply working with clay to sculpt can be calming for your entire body. Your overall mental well-being will be boosted following a creative venture as well.

Enhance Cognitive Ability and Memory

Many doctors are now looking to artistic expression as a way to save the mental faculties of some patients. By utilizing art therapy with patients who suffer from Alzheimer’s or Dementia, some patients have seen a 70% improvement in their memories. Drawing and painting allow you to connect both sides of the brain hemispheres and actually grow new brain cells.

Boost Your Sense of Achievement

As a child, your artwork was probably hung on the wall and appreciated by family and friends. As an adult, you should do the same. The creative juices you invested in your art as well as time and energy should be recognized by others. You will feel better a greater sense of accomplishment and self-worth following the completion of a piece of art.