My studio is my healing space. I say healing space because it allows me to be in the moment. In my small studio, I am surrounded by color and the paintings I created. Somehow the distractions, anxieties, and worries of my life take a back seat to putting paint on canvas. Once I leave my space those distractions do return however I am calmer and can view those anxieties with a bit more clarity. My 95 year old mother passed on to greater glory this year. She was my biggest fan (a tie with my husband) and encouraged me to paint in retirement. She also had a good eye particularly for color and would let me know if something was not working. I gifted her my very first painting which she displayed in her home with great pride. Friends had sent me this lovely bouquet of flowers after her death. It begged to be painted. Entitled, "Thinking of You Flowers", I found great joy and healing in the paint. The colors came alive for me. One of her favorite rugs warms the floor of my studio as a reminder of how much we can give to each other through simple encouragement. I miss her.
It is January 2023- a new year with opportunity and promise. It is often recommended that artists set intents or resolutions or goals for the year. In reviewing the definitions of these words, they all have the underlying meaning of relation to "purpose" or "decision to do something." Goals are defined as "an aim or objective that you work toward with effort and determination."
Since painting is a form of self care for me, I choose art to be my focus for resolutions; my purpose of intent for the year. For me painting is one form of healing I seek in my life. When I go into the studio the visuals of the easel and blank canvas, the smell of paint, my brushes sitting on the work table and the sounds surrounding the space inspire me.
Through painting, time is often lost and my mind becomes laser focused. I seek to create; however I also seek to find joy in the process. Finding joy is not always easy. We as a culture tend to put expectations on that process and limit creativity with fear of producing. I try to remember that a piece of art is only perfect when we also honor it's imperfections.
As a senior (in age) artist, I mentor and take lots of classes to learn and add to my skill. Taking classes from other artists is part of my intent for the year. Also learning to paint en plein air as the master impressionists did is a goal.
My biggest resolution or purpose this year however; is to paint with joy - not with abandon but with a heart open to allowing the process to unfold. The painting I have attached above was quite the challenge for me. It required the skill of taking a chaotic photo and designing its basic shapes, values and colors into a cohesive art piece. The greatest challenge though, was entering into the process with joy and diminishing those thoughts of fear- I can't do it!
Whatever your intent, resolutions, or goals are for this new year of 2023, I hope you will embrace joy in the process. We can then say on January 1, 2024; it was a good year.
Pushing through resistance. I’m trying to find my way through the maze of negative thoughts to the ones leading to creative flow. Looking for the zone!