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I have taken many workshops in the past two years when I embarked on this more intense creative journey. I think taking workshops with all these wonderful artists/women is mostly about being inspired. Connecting with other artist primes us not to be the duplicators, but to see all the possibilities there are and helps us grow and ripen into more authentic self. My second on line course I took was with Christy Tomlinson, and I did so much since then, but she still inspires me. Her warm selfless soul touches and helps so many women around her. She coined the phrase She Matters and it’s meant to empower all women. I am now borrowing that phrase to name my painting.
Another artist I just recently found out about is Danielle Donaldson. She also has a blog to inspire and empower women through creativity. As I was reading her blog I stumbled on this post that truly inspired me to write this one. You can read it on her blog or in here –
“I don’t often share deep, meaningful stories. And, well, I am not going to start now.
But sometimes the right words fall into place and capture something. A conversation, an overwhelming moment of goodness. BIG. HUGE. colorful epiphanies.
I realized the someone I love gets me way more than I thought. Way more than I gave credit for. And things are just good.
So I finally figured out that it is all about surrounding yourself with the right peeps. And being very aware of the wrong peeps.
surround yourself with those who see your weaknesses as strengths, not your strengths as weaknesses
hurt, not angry
caring, not “too sensitive”
guarded, not bitter
thoughtful, not worried
strong, not weak
quiet, not absent
It may not make any sense to anyone but me. that’s ok. it may mean something entirely different to you. but i hope you know that you are full of all sorts of good stuff. don’t let anyone tell you differently. with their words or actions.
I think she is so right to write this. We sometimes forget how important it is for our wellbeing to surround ourselves with people that support us, because as women and the prime nurturers of life, our healing can only happen from strength, not weakness, and empowering ourselves will only strengthen the shining light that we can emanate to others.
Happy Mother’s Day,
celebrate the mother in you, or the one you have.
When my darling pug Rocky passed away last year in November, I was devastated. I painted many images of me and him, expressing my grief, and it help me to pass the time in mourning and also to sort my thoughts out. The one image that I love the most was hard to share, because as he was being cremated, I was sitting in a coffee shop near by and writing around the image whatever came to my mind. And so the page itself became very personal. I wanted to make it more public, so that I could see it myself as well, and not only on those occasions that I remember to look into my journal, and so I recreated the image, and here it is, and all my tender moments with Rocky in it. May you always be remembered, you will always be in my heart.
Most of the time I have an idea what I want to paint. I start seeing images in my head that want to make their way on a surface and with it an idea comes to mind. As I start to paint the fragmented images might change and form into an object or they stay dancing around on their own not wanting to associate with an idea. But as the “Leaves of Change” painting started to form I knew that I myself was going through a change. That change started long ago and I don’t think that it is ending yet. And I was reminded of these words from the author Mark Nepo.
Though it is understandable to pray to God to remove us from pain and confusion, God waits at the very heart of that pain and confusion, if we can “become our way through it. This growing with God causes the heart to blossom. So it might serve us better to pray for the wherewithal to endure the flare of earthly moods into what is central and sacred, the way the gold is melted at intense temperatures. It presses us into what is immediate and clear, the way that coal is pressed into a diamond. It wears us into what matters, the way the ocean wears the sharp edges from the mouth of a shell.
I have painted all my life. And like yoga, painting fits into the part of me where I can escape to another world. There is no time or space, just colors and shapes dancing together in unlimited possibilities. Bright colors, dark colors and the many shades in between create a mood, a stark contrast and interplay of emotions.
I think that every time we look at something beautiful, like a sunrise or fireworks, we connect with the eternal, the joyful godlike self. And we want to preserve the moment. We take a picture in our minds, and hope we can hold on to both the image itself and the way that it made us feel inside. Artists take a different route by expressing the beautiful moment through painting, drawing, sculpting and other mediums in order to preserve the image. But because every individual perceives life’s experiences in different ways, there are a myriad of possibilities of what will come out on the canvas. Our artistic expression is also shaped by the medium that we use, the camera settings, or the words that we choose to describe the moment. Possibly, it’s never exactly what we saw, and chasing after the ideal can become maddening. I think that nature is always the ultimate master, but by continuing to practice our art we can bring ourselves closer to the divinity of life’s precious moments.
Sometimes I feel like I am the character in the movie of Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Richard Dreyfus plays the main character
possessed with visions of a mountain that he is suppose to climb, to meet with aliens. There is a scene where he is in the kitchen madly trying to reproduce with piles of dirt, wire, trash cans, bricks and what ever he could find and drag in from the outside to help him somehow clarify and put his hands on what his mind was telling him to do. That moment when he finally feels like he is done with a giant mountain sitting in a middle of his kitchen and just glances at the TV, he sees the same copy of it on the news. It justifies the whole mess. That is the feeling I get when I know the painting is done. Up until that point it was just a frenzy of emotion, or if you let your self calm down, an afternoon play. And that is mixed medial play. I don’t copy something that is right in front of me. I use the images in my mind to create something in front of me, using scraps of paper, glue, tidbits of memos, crayons, stencils, stamps, and hoping that eventually all this will create something I want to look at.