April 27, 2005

Artistic and Creative

A Reader wrote:

I'm trying to understand the psychology of fellow left-handers. I work as a computer programmer- I love designing dynamic websites and spend more time then I should on layout, selecting colors, font criteria etc. And my main hobbies are carpentry and painting. What I'm trying to get at here is I feel I'm a creative person do other left-handed people feel this way? It's interesting that a few weeks ago when an engineer came to fix my fridge door I noticed that he was left handed, we got chatting and he only happens to be developing an interactive commerce website in his spare time. Is this a coincidence?
What do other lefties feel about this?

April 24, 2005

Brain Theories

Right Brain Learning in 30 Days: Ever since Betty Edwards wrote Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain (now over a million copies in print), Americans have discovered the advantages of tapping into right-brain thinking. Now, the team of Keith Harary and Pamela Weintraub present the first absolutely accessible guide to the wonders of right-brain learning that produce results in less than a month.


Workout for a Balanced Brain: A fun exercise regimen for the brain's weaker hemisphere-right or left. With quick-and-easy tests readers can discern how the brain works and where it needs improvement, and then build their own personalized brain workouts using exercises and puzzles to balance their brains.


Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain: A revised and expanded edition of the classic drawing-instruction book that has sold more than 2,500,000 copies. When Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain was first published in 1979, it hit the New York Times bestseller list within two weeks and stayed there for more than a year. In 1989, when Dr. Betty Edwards revised the book, it went straight to the Times list again. Now Dr. Edwards celebrates the twentieth anniversary of her classic book with a second revised edition. Translated into thirteen languages, Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain is the world's most widely used drawing-instruction guide. People from just about every walk of life--artists, students, corporate executives, architects, real estate agents, designers, engineers--have applied its revolutionary approach to problem solving. The Los Angeles Times said it best: Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain is "not only a book about drawing, it is a book about living. This brilliant approach to the teaching of drawing . . . should not be dismissed as a mere text. It emancipates."


cover The Dominance Factor: How Knowing Your Dominant Eye, Ear, Brain, Hand, & Foot Can Improve Your Learning


April 18, 2005


cover Left-Handed Guitar : The Complete Method: Attention all Southpaws: it's time to turn your playing around! We're proud to announce that our groundbreaking guitar method solely devoted to lefties is now available with a CD! Complete with photos, diagrams and grids designed especially for the left-handed player, this book/CD pack teaches fundamentals such as: chords, scales, riffs, strumming; rock, blues, fingerpicking and other styles; tuning and theory; reading standard notation and tablature; and much more! Now with CD!


cover Left-Hand Guitar Chord Chart: A handy chord reference guide showing basic major and minor chords in all keys. Relative and secondary minor chord relationships shown on principal chords. All forms are fingered for the left-handed guitarist. Also shown is a guitar fingerboard with all the corresponding notes on a guitar strung for a left-handed performer.



cover Picture Chord Encyclopedia for Left Handed Guitarists: At long last, the ultimate reference for left-handed guitarists! This amazing book features photos and diagrams for over 2600 chords specifically shown for the left-handed player. It includes easy-to-read chord grids, easy-to-see photos, basic chord theory, basic fingering principles, open chords and barre chords, partial chords and broken-set forms.


cover Guitar Case Guide to Left-Handed Chords: The ultimate left-handers̢۪ guitar case chord book. All the chords you use most often, in a handy guitar case size. With clear diagrams and helpful hints and tips for easy reference.



cover Left-Handed Sewing: For those who sew left-handed: practical tips on how to adapt easily to right-handed diagrams, tools and instructional materials. Includes detailed material on basic tools for hand sewing, basic hand stitches, dealing with hooks and eyes, snaps, hand-rolled hems, darning and sewing on feathers, sequins and beads. The final section introduces basic tailoring hand stitches such as the buttonhole, chainstitch, cross stitch and French tack. Nearly 100 line drawings illustrate Sally Rowan̢۪s thoughtful instructions.


cover Left Handed Stitchery: Forty varieties of stitches


cover A Primer of Left-Handed Embroidery

April 4, 2005

It's Not a Disability

Some of the most disturbing e-mail I receive is from the right-handed parents of left-handed children, who are sincerely worried about their children's hand use. Many of these parents express concern that their children will "suffer" and "struggle", and that they will be unable to do schoolwork. Some are actually afraid that normal left-handed behaviors, such as mirror-image writing, using the "hook" position for writing, hand-switching, or partial ambidextrousness, may be signs of a neurological disorder!

Interestingly, I never hear this sort of concern from the left-handed parents of left-handed children. They know better.

Being left-handed is normal! Really. Lefties are simply a minority, as are natural blondes, guys over six feet tall, and people whose wisdom teeth come in without complications.

Are we sometimes singled out for stereotyping or teasing by ignorant folks? Yes. So are red-heads, who are suspected of having bad tempers. So are very tall men, who are assumed to be basketball players. So is anyone whose name can be made to rhyme with a schoolyard insult. So what?

Yes, we do sometimes run into obstacles in the form of tools that are very specifically designed for right-handed use. But most of the objects that we use in our everyday lives are free of prejudice. Pencils, hammers, screwdrivers, drinking glasses, matches, staplers, light switches, footballs, and a million other everyday objects work equally well when used with either hand. And when faced with a tool designed very specifically for right-handed use, most of us can adapt. Consider the automobile. In a country where people drive on the right side of the road, both left-handed and right-handed drivers sit on the left side of the car and learn to shift gears with the right hand. In a country where people drive on the left side of the road, both left-handed and right-handed drivers sit on the right side of the car and learn to shift gears with the left hand. It's not a problem!

Certainly, we need more left-handed desks in schools, to provide proper support for our writing arms. And computer hardware and software manufacturers should do a better job of providing support for left-handed mouse use. Undoubtedly, there are some power tools, sports equipment, and other items that would be easier to use if the makers had more lefty awareness. But in all these cases, the obstacles are artificially imposed by other people. There are no obstacles to left-handedness in nature. A young left-handed child who is not subjected to harrassment is just as happy, active, and skillful as a right-handed child the same age. As adults, most of us don't spend much time thinking about our handedness. We just do what we do, the way nature intended.

© 2005 Rosemary K. West