Thanks to recent researches on brain function, the Theory of Multiple Intelligence, the evaluation of dominating brain aptitudes, and techiques created to speed learning, it is now easier to learn and to store in memory what we study.
Psychologists, neurologists and researchers are writing about the results of these studies, helping us to understand and making us enthusiastic about the results obtained by those using these techniques.


Most people have been accostumed to think and act according to Cartesian paradigm, based on logical, linear, sequential reasoning, leaving aside emotions, intuition, creativity, and capacity to dare trying different solutions.
António Damásio, the well-known and awarded Portuguese neurologist, who lives in the United States, author of many published works, states in hist recent book "Descarte's mistake" that "the departing point of science and philosophy should be anti-Cartesian: I am (and I feel), therefore I think".
The vision of human being as a whole, is the key to the global development of the being.

By using more the left hemisphere, considered as rational, we do leave out the possibility of taking advantage of the benefits brought by the right hemisphere, such as creative imagination, serenity, global view, capacity of synthesis and ease of memorization, among others.

Mandala - By Iraci Santana
By means of various techniques we can stimulate the right side of the brain and search the integration of the two hemispheres, balancing the use of our potentialities.

One of these techniques consists of making some given drawings, in a non conventional way, so that our left hemisphere should consider them as a boring task and give up exerting total control, and then leaving in charge the right hemisphere, that "enjoys" the exercise.

The use of appropriate music, which diminishes the brain rythm, and silence also contributed to the balance in the use of brain hemispheres.
There are some researchers who suggest barroque music, especially the "largo" movement, which brings the adequate conditions for learning. It has the same frequency that a fetus hears and directs us automatically to the right side of the brain, leading the information to be stored in the long term memory.
Relaxation music, such as "new age" music, bring about the same effects.

Our mind regulates its activities by means of electric waves which are registered in the brain, emiting tiny electrochemical impulses of varied frequencies, which can be registered by an electroencephalogram. These brain waves are known as:

Beta, emited when we are consciously alert, or we feel agitated, tense, afraid, with frequencies ranging from 13 to 60 pulses per second in the Hertz scale;
Alpha, when we are in a state of physical and mental relaxation, although aware of what is happening around us, its frequency are around 7 to 13 pulses per second;
Theta, more or less 4 to 7 pulses, it is a state of somnolence with reduced consciousness; and
Delta, when there is unconsciousness, deep sleep or catalepsy, emitting between 0.1 and 4 cycles per second.
In general, we are accostumed to using the beta brain rythm. When we diminish the brain rythm to alpha, we put ourselves in the  ideal condition to learn new information, keep fact, data, perform elaborate tasks, learn languages, analyse complex situations.
Meditation, relaxation exercises, and activities that enable the sense of calm, also enable this alpha state.

According to neuroscientists, analysing electroencephalograms of people submmited to tests in order to research the effect of decreasing the brain rythm, the attentive relaxation or the deep relaxation, produce signficant increases in the levels of beta-endorphin, noroepinephrine and dopamine, linked to feelings of enlarged mental clarity and formation of rememberances, and that this effect lasts for hours and even days. It is an ideal state for synthetic thought and creativity, the proper functions of the right hemisphere.
As it is easy for the hemisphere to create images, to visualise, to make associations, to deal with drawings, diagrams and emotions, as well as the use of good-humour and pleasure, learning is better absorbed if these elements are added to the study methods.


The ideal situation is that we should use all the potentialities of the brain, so rich and so surprising!
When we lead all our life exercising almost exclusively the functions of the left hemisphere, or the right side, then degenerative brain diseases, so feared such as Alzheimer Disease, for instance, appear.
We need therefore, to stimulate the diverse areas of our brain, helping the neurons to establish new connection, diversifying our fields of interest, searching to know ourselves better to act with more accuracy and precision.

Howard Gardner, the American psychologist who created the Theory of Multiple Intelligence, has identified initially seven types of intelligence in the human being which are stimulated and expressed in different ways, according to each individual. They are:  verbal/linguistic; logic/mathematic; musical; corporal/cinesthesic; visual/spatial; interpersonal; intrapersonal.  Nowadays, it has been added the naturalist intelligence and the existential intelligence, the latest being still under study.
The theory of Multiple Intelligence must be applied not only with different people, to reach each one of them, according to their point of interest, but also in ourselves, trying to develop each type of intelligence we bring in a dormant state.

It has been developped in the United States a system of evaluation of dominating brain aptitudes, used also by some Brazilian authors and that shows clearly which are the areas of the brain that we give preference and, then, a psychologic portrait of the person is drawn, the way this individual acts, in which place he/she prefers to seat in a classroom, how he/she learns better, etc.  To this result, we have added other elements, within a holistic view of the human beings, which has helped people considerably.

As we know the areas which are more stimulated, then we starting practising a series of exercises to activate the less used regions, so, that with time, our capacity to act as a whole human being will be much improved.
We will be logic and intuitive, practical and dreamers, rationnal and emotive, we will obey  the status quo and we will use our creativity, we will have "our feet in the ground and our head in heavens"...  We will belong, at last, to the sky and to the earth, capturing all teaching with ease, independent of age group. This will make us more capable and self-confident.


Human picture of imagination (above) and observation (to the right)
Author: Nazareth Bastos, 1994.
Since 1992, when we started coordinating the course called DLADIC – Development of the right side of the brain, where we use drawing as a pretext to reach our objectives, we have been suprised by the rich potentiality that we have stored in our brain, just waiting for the adequate conditions to manifest themselves.
In this period, more than 300 people enrolled in the course. Each one with a different interest, with their own motivation.
Almost all of them, in the first contacts, stated that were incapable of making any kind of drawing, of creating anything, or paying attention or concentrating on something.

Throughout the process of release, these people are increasingly surprised with the visible results in their artistic work and the discovery of a new way of seeing the world and seeing themselves.
One of the first exercises is one of attention, concentration, meditation. Using a legal-size sheet of paper, the student, without lifting the pencil from the sheet, draws straight vertical and horizontal lines which cross each other, thus making a composition. After filling the sheet of paper according to their taste, he can fix the lines that were bent and then outline them with black felt pen and then draw the shapes formed by the lines so that he temporarily shuts off his left hemisphere and allow the right hemisphere to express itself, while listening to a relaxing or subliminar music, in deep silence, meditating about the following questions:

These are questions that the individual poses and answers to him/herself, without externalizing it to others, according to his/her wishes. The same holds for their own drawings, which are used as a lure to gain access to the right side of the brain -- they do not need to be shown to anybody. It is an intimate, personal moment when we afford to be ourselves, with failures and victories, withouth censorship nor justifications, taking risks in the exploration of a new field, full of surprises.  It is a path to self-discovery.
In these exercises we see students accomplishing works that are almost perfect in the timespan of a ***class. (class,) and then spending two or three classes correcting what was done! Others, refuse to amend their work, saying that: “this is just the way my life is, full of entangled lines, I do not want to correct them.”  Some people feel confused in relation to the simplicity of the proposal, as they are so accostumed to the complexity of challenges they have to face daily. And do and redo the exercise several times, until they manage to accomplish the guidelines given...
When the work is ready, the joy is expressed in their facing in front of the unexpected composition.  Sometimes, they put into a frame and hang it, feeling themselves as artists.
From this composition, we stimulate the creativity by suggesting the infinity of new works that could appear as result of the exploration and amplification of small details with the most diverse materials and to the most diverse ends: murals, divisions,  panels, oil paintings, collages, three-dimension objects and so on.

In the drills aimed at developping  mental power, we see those that are accostumed to meditation, to the search of spiritual growth, assume the task with determination, managing to transfering to paper what they have visualized and thus giving strong colors, full of contrast, and continuing at home with variations of the very same work. To those that are not concerned with these issues, they have more difficulties and need to be better guided and coached.
Working with creativity, we take advantage of the observation drawing to make a new composition, where the object of drawing is dissolved, and become an essential part of the creative process, and thus becoming part of the whole. We take part of this work, or details to produce news creations, as if it was a cornucopia where new ideas always flow...

With this exercise we call attention about team work. The importance of each member so that the group or enterprise to outstand. When we backlight someone in the team, even if he is the most humble, we can stimulate and witness the growth of a rich potential of great utility and beauty. When we value a small group within the team, the outcome also can be even better. We also outline the importance of respecting the individual limits and spaces.
In a more advanced stage, we work with the unblocking of the bad habits of observation and mental flexibility.
In the tasks given, the student is going to forget the name attributed to things and tries to see precisely the real thing that is in front of him, stripped of any symbolism. Because we live far from the real, from what is true, we suffer so much! We imagine so many things when confronted with a fact, a gesture, a happening, when the real meaning was another, completely different from what we had imagined.
In this work, they are asked to see situation from different perspective:  the inside, the outside, comparing sizes, apertures, distances... We move constantly from the part to the whole,  and vice-versa, in a state of attentive relaxation, forgetful of time of worries that we had in the moment previous to the class. It is suggested that this experience is taken to the daily life, trying always  to discover new solutions to the problems and challenges of life, avoiding crystallizing ideas and points of view.

We stimulate the attentive observation of the companion who walks the same path of life with us, making our mind flexible to look at this companion without the concept and prejudices that we have rooted in ourselves in the course of our common experience. Even if we have known someone for a long time, we never know anybody deep enough, since we all are in a constant process of change. And each person is always an incognito that surprise us.
We use in this drill, the human figure in drawings made with different techniques, charcoal, pencil or pen sketches, During the course some people leave temporarily. Then they return and say that a given task has shaken them so much that they decided to do therapy of work their inner self in a given aspect they have never before given the due importance...

Others, with a small stimulus, discover the artistic potential they have and jump into the world of art, creating and painting works that are exhibited even in other states of Brazil. One of such students, took just one month of classes and started painting, travelling later to several countries, discovering new things and has left two of her panels in a New Zealand restaurant.
We see children managing to concentrate at home to do their homework, teenagers managing to learn with more ease school subjects, adults writing better, understanding non verbal communicaiton, reading more and managing a better relaxation towards daily tensions. We see elderly people employing their time in the acquisition of more knowledge, in the fulfillment of old dreams, in the discovery of their potentialities...

Music, internal and external silence, the drawing drills, the exercises of creativity, mandalas and in some occasions, videotherapy, have been strong allies in the conquest of this inner wealth that we all possess and did not know we possess it.
Thanks to the advancement of brain research, we have added new approaches to this course, aiming at the usage of the whole potential of the brain, trying to balance the left and right hemispheres. The course has been named then Creativity and the Brain, when it is done in a group setting,  and named In search of harmony, to be happier, when it is done individually.
Presently, there are available to all those who want to be be prepared to the new millenium, the most diverse ressources of inner growth, divulgated by different media, by means of professionals concerned with the construction of a new society. You need only to search...


Desenhando com o lado direito do cérebro – Betty Edwards - Ediouro
Aprendizagem e criatividade emocional – Elson A. Teixeira  –  Makron Books
Cérebro esquerdo, cérebro direito -  Springer e Deutsch – Summus Editorial
Alquimia da Mente – Hermínio C. Miranda – Publicações Lachâtre
Viver Holístico – Patrick Pietroni – Summus Editorial
Revista Planeta, nº 201 – junho 1989
Revista Globo Ciência, ano 4, nº 39
Revista Nova Escola – Setembro 1997

Celeste Carneiro is a plastic artist, professor of the course Criativity and Brain   E-mail:


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