I'm going to blog for 30 days straight starting May 1st. No biggie. If you want to join me, please visit every day and pop your link in the comments.
So, yesterday started with me all gung ho to get started on the 30 paintings challenge. I did my usual morning thing (blogging, checking e-mail, journaling, etc.) and then sat down to get my art on. I made a total mess of things - working in a new size, on canvas, with way too much of a plan (I wanted to do a stylized floral). I didn't ask my spirit what it wanted to paint. I didn't do my usual 'before art' ritual (which includes lighting a candle, smudging my space, and lighting some incense as a way to enter a light trance state). I just dove in with some bouncy music blaring in the background. I hated what I made. It wasn't resonating. It felt off.
So, I grabbed a jar of absorbent ground and slathered it on there. While it was drying, I did my pre-art ritual, and then sat down to attend to my soul like I usually do.
This is what came out:
"In The Garden" - Mixed media on 6 x 8 canvas
I'm super happy with it. My crappy start was the perfect teaching moment for me. It taught me that no matter what kind of art I'm making, my routine, my self-created ritual, is important. Whatever I'm doing, my spirits wants in. It wants to be engaged.
AND! I got flowers out of it, so win!
In Other News
I went on a couple of dates over the last two weeks, more as a practice in badassery than anything else. I had two pretty disappointing experiences, and I realized after the second total fail that I *am* badass, but my badassery is better applied elsewhere right now. My intention was to open myself up to finding someone to pass time with now and then - nothing serious, nothing heavy - some fun, maybe some sex. My intentions were good, but I am definitely not ready to be 'putting myself out there'. It's crazy out there. Seriously. One guy did nothing but bitterly complain about his ex, and the other one remarked that his ex had a smoking body and could have been a stripper. While I had more fun with the second (we talked a lot), the whole "My ex is so hot" thing really turned me off.
So, yeah. Not interested in putting myself through that kind of thing for the time being.
I could have had gotten laid last night (it being Beltaine and all). Instead, I did this:
Cleaned, organized, ready for my work. Gah, it felt so damned good to get this done! After my first failed painting yesterday afternoon, the studio was a MESS, but now? It's pristine. Happy.
Today is for me
I have therapy at 1 (I go weekly because BATCRACKERS) and then coffee with a girlfriend, and then the rest of the day is for me. I will get my painting done - and having learned my lesson, I'm going to go in with no preconceived notions, no expectations. I'm going to let my soul sing in colour.
And you? How are you? Are you blogging along?
Go ahead and pop your link in the comments below.
Thank you for all your lovely comments on the nature of my personal writing. I really appreciate hearing that this way I have of blathering on transparently and vulnerably serves you. It makes me feel shiny. xo
It's New Moon, which means a new lesson in Moonshine, and I gotta tell you - I am totally in love with what I painted.
This piece of loveliness was arrived at via a method I teach in Moonshine called "Trance Journaling". I started doing it way back when I taught Elements in 2010 (an art journaling class that is now retired) and it became a regular part of my practice.
Essentially, you put on some music that doesn't get your emotions all riled up (like ambient tunes or straight drumming) and you OBEY EVERY IMPULSE. Every. Single. One.
Sometimes, you end up with really strange, maybe even ugly paintings - messes of mud and unintegrated symbols, but sometimes, you get something like this vision of swoon-worthiness.
Whether you end up with something that makes you look at it cockeyed wondering WTF or you get something that makes perfect sense in both a visually pleasing and meaningful sort of way, the point is the process.
I love process painting.
Love. It. Madly.
One of these days, I'm going to dedicate an entire e-course to process painting. You just watch.
In the meantime, Moonshine affords me the opportunity to demonstrate trance journaling at least once a moon cycle, since our New Moons are dedicated to loose-y goose-y, non-composed, non-preconceived intuitive flow. It just makes me happy.
In Other News
Three lucky ladies won a seat in Book Of Days Premium today, and that ALSO makes me extremely happy. I love being in the position to send out happy news via e-mail. If you entered my April Art Journal Challenge, and you're not sure whether or not you won, you should definitely POSITIVELY check, because you might have! Click here to get the news. A new challenge will be going up on May 1st.
In Book Of Days News
I'm already seeing new art being posted based on the first week's lesson in BOD2014 v2. I don't know of anything that makes me happier than seeing people dive right into a new class and get 'er done. It's so affirming to know that my lessons resonate with people and that they enjoy them enough to really tackle them.
The first spread was a 'manifesto' around my chosen theme for the 12 week session - self-love. I used a meme I found on Facebook (nothing is too hokey for my art journal!) and created this spread to house the text:
It's always really fun to include selfies in my spreads. It really personalizes a journal spread AND it gives me a place to use all those Instagram shots I tend to take and then do nothing with.
Using your own photos is something I highly recommend. Journal spreads that are made up of other people's components (scrapbook paper, stamps, etc.) can be super beautiful AND meaningful, but there is nothing like getting a little bit of you in there in the form of a photo or your own handwriting that really takes a spread to the next level.
Up & Coming
I'm starting a 30 day painting challenge on May 1st, and that will coincide with my Mulligan Blog Along. I had to pause a few days before the end because my Internet had me so frustrated. We finally figured out what the problem was AND we got it fixed, so I am a happy denizen of the web once more!
There's no Wildly Inspired this week, but there will be one next week.
And that's all she wrote for now.
I was listening to Shiloh Sophia talk about The Garden Of Hope and tell the story of the Magdalene when she came upon the Christ after his crucifixion. There was something in it for me that I couldn't quite access, so I did what I do when something resonates but I can't quite put my finger on what it might hold for me in terms of gifts, blessings, or insights.
Here's what came through:
This is a total departure for me. I don't really recognize myself in this at all. It began with a very simple sketch of a nude standing on a field of blue:
and morphed as I worked into this:
I have no idea what it means, and I have no more insight than I did when I began painting, but I feel some things about it. That if you're going to go to the Garden of Hope, you'd better go naked. That going to that garden is rather like a descent into the underworld. That it will change you. That standing there, naked, is an initiation.
There are also a few bits and bobs about parts of self and where the soul(s) reside in the body, but it is all ethereal and quick as water over rocks. Hard to catch.
This kind of work what I think of as meditative. I'm listening. I'm dredging up the contents of my soul and laying it out on the table so I can examine it more readily. What do these colours represent? What about the expression on her face? Why was I more comfortable with these shapes than I was with the realistic rendering of a breast, a hip. What do these flowers mean?
It's an invitation from self to Self and back to self again. Attend. Listen. Whisper and I will whisper back.
That was my afternoon. And you? How was yours?
Did you blog today? Post it below so we can all come say hi. :)