"Art is pain" shouldn't be so literal.
June 15, 2009 6:55 AM Subscribe
Joint pain while drawing--what to do?
posted by omoikkiri to health & fitness (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I've always had a love-hate relationship with drawing. I enjoy drawing and hope to work in a creative field as a career. However, I have a big problem with illustration work. When I draw for more than an hour or so, the joints of my ring finger start to hurt (both the joint in the finger and the joint between the finger and the hand). I've seen a doctor about this pain, but they found nothing "wrong" with the area.
I do hold my pencil wrong, so I know that my grip has contributed to the pain. (I hold the pencil so that it rests on my ring finger.) However, it hurts the same area when I use the standard tripod grip. In addition, the tripod grip tires out the rest of my hand. I've tried to train myself to be ambidextrous to no avail.
It's very frustrating! In order to improve my art, I must sketch. But sketching just hurts my hand. I was lucky to have a sympathetic art professor who let me skip a day of class in order to recover from the pain resulting from a rather large pastel assignment.
This problem has impacted more than my art life: too much writing also causes the pain, albeit more slowly. The pain is always in the same joints.
Can anyone explain to me some more ergonomic ways to draw? Maybe give me some massage techniques or stretches? I've used Biofreeze in the past to numb the pain. When the pain hits really bad, I try to avoid all writing/drawing for a day or two. If it helps, I'm right-handed.