After describing to a friend why art makes me come alive, she sent me this beautifully animated video by The School of Life.
In it, the narrator almost perfectly desribes my sentiments through the words of John Ruskin, the leading English art critic of the Victorian era:
"Let two persons go out for a walk.: the one a good sketcher, the other having no taste of the kind. Let them go down a green lane. There will be a great difference in the scene as perceived by the two individuals. The one will see a lane and trees. He will perceive the trees to be green, though he will think nothing about it. He will see that the sun shines and that it has a cheerful affect, and that's all.
But what will the sketcher see? His eye is accustomed to search into the cause of beauty and penetrate the minutest parts of lovliness. He looks up and observes how the showery and sub-divided sunshine comes sprinkled down among the gleaming leaves overhead till the air is filled with an emerald light. He will see here and there a bow emerging from the veil of leaves. He will see the jewel brightness of the emerald moss and the variegated and fantastic likens: white and blue, purple and red, all mellowed and mingled into a single garment of beauty. Then come the cavernous trunks and the twisted roots that grasp with their snake-like coils at the steep bank who's turfy slope is inlaid with flowers of a thousand dyes.
Is this not worth seeing?"
Drawing directly from a leaf, paying such close attention to every detail, allows me to see hundreds of shades of colors in all their vibrance. The more I draw, the more I paint, the more time I spend observing nature in all of it's magic.
However, sketching is not the only way. A biologist, a photographer, an astrophysicist, a designer, an engineer... might all perceive the scenery in different, equally beautiful and valid ways. The purpose of this video is not to de-validate all other methods of seeing, but rather to emphasize the act of seeing itself.
So, look around. Observe. Notice every color before you.