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Ok, so I am not old, not really – 33 is not old! – but it does get more difficult to add new skills as you grow older. Part of the problem is simply not having the time to learn and rehearse and establish the new skill. Then of course this is coupled by how our brains work. In adolescence the plasticity in our brain allows us to create new neural pathways at a faster rate, thus the act of learning is quicker (initially). While it took me a few months to get back into the swing of learning when I started college having left school ten years previously I have certainly discovered that learning new things after university is happening faster than it did beforehand.

For example, I tried to use photoshop ten years ago, and failed miserably. I had more time to learn back then and less going on in my life, but it took too long to make sense to me so I gave up. Having received PS for Christmas and having used GIMP for a year I was determined to not let the same thing happen again, and because of my brain’s active state I believe it came to me more easily.

I am absolutely loving being creative in this way. I never had the patience nor tactile talent for art and was always too clumsy and, quite frankly, rubbish to do crafts and sculpture, so digital art and manipulation has been a bit of a revelation! I have been writing since I was a child and had images in my head that I described and learned to portray with words, but there are some images that needed more than words. Now I am starting to express myself with visual art. It is wonderful to have this pathway open to me as a hobby, and I am so glad I gave PS another go!

Forget “brain training” and pick up a new hobby! That is all your neural pathways need to spark to life and give you another facet to your life. 😀

My latest creation (for my Dragon Age RPG):

"Beware the dagger in the dark."

“Beware the dagger in the dark.”