We might now have neurological proof that artists actually are different creatures from everyone else on the planet. According to a study published in Neurolmage, researchers believe that artists have brains that are structurally different from non-artists. It appears that there’s now justifiable support for the idiom “she’s just wired differently, idk.”
The study, titled “Drawing On The Right Side Of The Brain: A Voxel-Based Morphometry Analysis Of Observational Drawing,” included 44 graduate and post-grad art students and non-art students who were asked to complete various drawing tasks.
The completed tasks were measured and scored, and that data was compared to “regional grey and white matter volume in the cortical and subcortical structures” of the brain using a scanning method called voxel-based morphometry. An increase in grey matter density on the left anterior cerebellum and the right medial frontal gyrus were observed in relation to drawing skills.
The scans depicted that the artist group had more grey matter in the area of the brain called the precuneus in the parietal lobe. That region is involved with many skills, but could possibly be linked to controlling your mind’s eye for visual creativity.
Lead author Rebecca Chamberlain from KU Leuven, Belgium noted, “The people who are better at drawing really seem to have more developed structures in regions of the brain that control for fine motor performance and what we call procedural memory.”
Studying the brain’s make-up in experts versus non-experts has been a practice in music ability, complex motor skills, and more, but according to the research paper, “No studies have assessed the structural differences associated with representational skills in visual arts.”
So if your anachronistically traditional parents ask why you’re always drawing inside on nice days, you have science to back up your answer.