Sunday, June 5, 2011
This latest collage, with boats, cabinets, crosses and pyramids spinning around in a crazy whirlpool, is called "Am I ready?" Three women, all dear friends, sat around my studio table one afternoon and gave ourselves one hour to complete 11x18 collages. We wrote questions that were "up" for us on the back of a canvas panel, then mixed them all up and handed them out randomly. No one knew what question was on the back of their canvas. Then commenced a great flurry of paint on canvas, magazine pics being chosen, cut and placed on top of the paint, more paint, more pics, lots of laughter, some chocolate and iced tea, a mutually agreed-upon 10 minute extension, and voila! Four beautiful, completely unique and wonderful pieces of art. And then, each piece was reverently placed on the mantel and gazed upon - received and taken in - a gift from the unconscious to its creator and the world. Only then did the creator get to read the question on the back of their piece.
What happened next was that lovely shift into a shared heart/mind space. It was warm and safe and nurturing - like sinking into one of the tubs at Esalen - beautiful and sacred. We shared what we saw and intuited and knew on some other level than the one we usually operate from. My collage (my unconscious - my higher self?) asked me, "are you ready for the whirlpool, which will feel like you are spinning through confusion, loss and fear, but will end in a brightly lit world of beauty and peace?" Well, of course I'm ready, when you put it that way! Thank goodness some part of me knows. Because my head is still spinning and fretting.
The collage process is so fun and so wonderful for getting in touch with that wise part of ourselves that I am offering a class. Check the sidebar for the schedule. Call me if you have any questions about the process - artistic or otherwise.
May you have many opportunities to hear your wise inner voice.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
I thought we were gulping big chunks of change back THEN. Little did we know. One day at a time has been compressed to one moment at a time. My new mantra has become: In this moment, I am loved. In this moment, I am safe. In this moment, I am supported. And you know what? It's true. That simple, and still a mighty challenge sometimes.
Making art helps. Friends who let you cry are invaluable. A purring cat on my lap can turn the light in my heart back on.
Friday, July 6, 2007
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
A wise woman said last night "Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time."
This morning, two friends were discussing boundaries and how they impacted their art making. One hates putting time restrictions on that "magic" time of creating art. The other argued that boundaries always exist, and actually help the creative process. They're both right. And that's not the only paradox that making art presents. (And you know, when I talk about creating art, I'm talking about creating your life as well.)
Today I'm thinking about mistakes - the things you're never supposed to make, but can lead to the most delightful creations. The mandala above started out as a traditional Tibetan design, with paint and appliqued paper. I started in the center, and cut some lace paper in a lotus leaf shape, but when I put it on the canvas, the lace paper wouldn't do what I wanted it to. I kept trying, but when I looked at the result, it had more of a hand-made "quilty" feel than a symmetrical, precise look.
So here's the choice point. Get frustrated, rip off the paper, try to get it right next time, OR see what wants to happen and go with it. I decided to go with the quilt idea and had more fun with this mandala than I had had in a long time, because it was new and surprising and I wasn't sure what would come next.
I'm imagining that there was a band of outrageously fun-loving and absolutely loving angels hovering around me, watching me try to put my "precise" lotus petals into place, and cheering "Screw up! Go ahead! Really mess it up! You have no idea what fun it will be if you drop that silly idea of yours and just let loose."
If you've seen my mandalas, you know I love precision and detail, and you'll also see that every once in awhile, I'll do an abstract one, to play and have fun. Some don't turn out at all, but no matter - it was not wasted time.
Friday, December 1, 2006
Remember those song lyrics - "If it feels good, do it; do it if it's what you feel"? Good advice for getting those creative juices flowing. I know it works for some people to commit themselves to sitting at their desk, easel, keyboard, or whatever at a certain time, for a certain time, but that has never worked for me. When I force myself to "be creative," I produce lousy, stilted pieces and I feel lousy while doing it. Then I paint over the piece later.
What works better for me is if I wait, no matter how long, for some sort of inspiration to arise (i.e., not panicking and telling myself that "if I were a real artist, I would ...fill in the blank.") That is honoring "feminine" energy - the idea or the feeling of something wanting to be expressed. Then the "masculine" energy can come in and get it done. It doesn't work so well to have the masculine energy dictate that something must be created and created NOW. (Do all women dislike being told what to do?)
Masuru Emoto - the Japanese scientist featured in the movie What the Bleep shows how water crystals exposed to certain words and phrases change their shape. Crystals exposed to "do it" are misshapen and flat, while crystals exposed to "let's do it" look like pretty little snowflakes. It makes sense, then, that a painting "forced" into existence would look (and feel) different than one "invited" into existence.
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Guess we'll see what wants to happen here. I don't know why, but I had a sudden memory of getting onto the Adventureland Jungle Boat Cruise at Disneyland - a mixture of excitement, fun, and that bit of nervous twittering in the back ("are you sure we won't get caught in that waterfall") Whee! Fake hippos, very bad punny jokes. This is going to be fun!
Art-wise, had to post my "first-born" mandala. Looks pretty with the lime green background, methinks.