I haven't written here for a while. I love writing, it is another creative process which I enjoy immensely. However it takes a back seat to artist, mothering, wifing (I don't think that is a word) and casual Education Support Assistant. Therefore, I have been contemplating balance. I think all the parts of me are working well together but not necessarily "balanced". I have been painting a lot of late as I have been teaching a fabulous group of people, we have been on a journey of listening to our inner voice. I have had the oppurtunity to teach, inspire and encourage. However it meant, not a lot of writing was done and I may have forgotten to feed the kids a couple of times. I believe when we try to aspire to a "balanced" life, it puts a lot of pressure on us, the frustration when we can't find the balance and the irritation, like an itch under the skin when we know it just isn't going to happen or we can't make it work. But what if we took all our "parts" and practised "balance-ing"? To weigh and consider, to be steady in our endeavours and to evaluate? All these wonderful attributes can be used not only in everyday life but also when we are being creative. I think I will keep this in mind when I start my next painting, because I'm sure if I listened to my inner wisdom these attributes would bubble to the surface and make the process so much more enjoyable.
The joy I get from being creative is not the end result or what the painting becomes. It is truly the journey. From the very beginning when I buy the canvas to the moment where I add the finishing brush stroke. The path is filled with a roller coaster of experiences. Self doubt, play, joy, love, hate and self enquiry. Then it comes to signing the art work, varnishing it and getting it sorted for hanging, these acts are not the fun part part of the precedent mystic journey. They feel like house keeping duties, important but a bit of a chore.
The next step is what to do with the art work? This is interesting as I never originally set out to sell my paintings. I was approached by a friend who wanted to buy one of my first big art works , thus the beginning of the next stage of my creative journey. I paint from a very emotionally driven inner voice, therefore it is sometimes hard to part with these creations. I hang them for as long as possible in my home until my inner wisdom informs me it is time for someone else to find joy in them (this is why I do not have a physical portfolio of work).
I have a wonderful organic, mutually lovely relationship with a beautiful shop in Glenbrook called Late September. This is part of the creative journey that does NOT feel like a chore, one of my favourite things to do is drive up the mountain with my paintings in the back to deliver to Sam, this week I took up "Open Wings" (which you can read about here) and Kamala (which you can read about here). Late September is such a big supporter of my work and I am so grateful that I have the opportunity (made possible by Sam) to share my work with more people. A painting can sit for a long time waiting for the right person to find it and she is very patient with this process. So thank you, Sam. I love our coffee and painting catch ups!
As many of you know, one of my favourite things to create are wings. They represent so many different things to me. I was inspired to make these after visiting Bella Boheme, I left with 3 sheets of the most amazing paper (it was a gift from the beautiful Emma, who owns the store). I knew they would make the perfect set of feathers. They are called "Open Wings".
No bird can fly
without opening its wings,
and no one can love
without exposing their heart.
I spend a lot of time working through programs for my creative workshops. It is important for me that students
My new painting is finished and I am so happy to have her hanging on my wall, I know I will enjoy her while I can as they are never meant to be mine for long. She is the latest of my "Tribe Ladies" and is called Kamala (Lotus). The Lotus is a flower that grows in muddy water in streams and ponds. It blossoms into a beautiful flower in spite of these murky origins. The Lotus symbolises the possibility in all of us that we too can overcome adversity and obstacles to flourish. I have taken my time to nurture her and she has evolved over 10 months to complete. She is 120cm x 90 cm, artist quality acrylic on canvas. Please email if you have any enquiries.
(Vierges Noires, otherwise know as "Black Virgin" is something I have recently taken an interest in. My latest "Tribe Member" painting is nearly finished (blog post with photos to come soon) and my sister commented to me that her dark face reminded her of these Religious symbolic icons. I love and adore icon paintings, I was lucky enough to do a workshop years ago where I got to create one (the bottom image) and the ancient process fascinates me. I decided to do some reading on the "Black Virgins" as I slowly and gently finish my latest lady, who is sporting a dark mysterious face.
The Black Madonna is generally found in Catholic and Orthodox countries and are mainly of medieval origin ( 12th - 15th centuries). There are over 180 Black Madonnas in France and the images can be put into three categories: (1) dark brown or black Madonnas with skin pigmentation matching that of the indigenous population; (2) various art forms that have turned black as a result of physical factors such as deterioration of pigments, accumulated smoke from the use of votive candles, and accumulation of grime over the ages, and (3) no ready explanation. I am especially taken with Theotokos (Greek title for Mary), one of three surviving icons in Turkey. I love being inspired but I also love that my painting has inspired me to learn more about these beautiful Vierges Noires.
We had an adventure down to the South Coast last year and fell in love with new parts of Australia that we had yet to discover. My children got to explore their first waterfall and the rugged beauty of some of our National Parks. When we came back I was so inspired by our experience that I painted my interpretation of palms, waterfalls and coastal bush. So in 2016 we have decide to "Chase Waterfalls".......let the adventure begin!
Chasing Waterfalls is acrylic on canvas 120cm x 120cm and can be found at the beautiful new Homeware store for sale at North Steyne Emporio in Manly.
Intuition is something I have wanted to write about for a long time. It is used a lot in spiritual courses, yoga platforms, art teachers refer to it a lot, and artists are expected to be very in-tuned to their intuition. I have always put a lot faith in my intuition, I sensed that my radar for certain situations was quite strong. So if this really was the case why did I find myself making wrong decisions, why was making a "choices" so painstakingly hard? Why did I feel like my intuition had failed me?
My answer to these questions came when I had a conversation with one of my students, it is was clear to me that "intuition" was a very esoteric concept, it was not something that they felt they could tap into very well. It was frustrating for them every time I said "Be intuitive".
We put a lot of pressure and expectation onto our intuition, leaving it clouded and often flailing. It ends up being this mystical, magic power that just slips through our fingers like fairy dust. But what if we could look at it through a different perspective, a different lens? What, if we could learn to use it differently and we took the pressure and expectations away?
One of my yoga teachers recently introduced the idea that intuition was really our "inner knowing". It is built from all our raw experiences, our life journey and our true non judgemental spirit. For this to work in our favour, we must believe in ourselves and our inner knowing. We must try to practise faith, trust and love for ourselves, this is essential for us to be able to listen and tap into our inner wisdom.
I belive inner knowing is more tangible, it is more trustful and beautiful than having to rely on our fickle and esoteric intuition. If you could call your intuition "inner knowing" how will this change your ability to go forward in your creative journey?
Summer has been busy and lots of fun, and I have been lucky enough to get my hands dirty with paint. Ive been thinking about my painting style for a while and feel like I need to inject something fresh into my creations. I'm not good with change (in life and art) in fact I'm really bad at it and can get very anxious. But today I worked out that if I take baby steps into the change rather than feel like I am being railroaded I may just be able to become more accepting. So with curiosity in tow I got to the drawing board and took a step into the world of lighter tones and shade.....progress.
As another year comes to a festive close I would like to think we have made the most of each moment and day of 2015. We have met some inspiring people, have had new babies join our extended family, we have painted, studied, travelled to Melbourne to see loved ones and travelled to Byron to be inspired. I got to share my 45th birthday with some amazing women, run art workshops with wonderful creative people. One of my favourite shops opened Bella Boheme (by my niece who I am so proud of). We've enjoyed the beauty of our city. We have all worked hard (thanks to Late September!!), been stressed and cried, picked ourselves back up and got back in touch with what we love and did it all over again. A year of santosha. Thank you for joining me on my art journey/blog and I hope Christmas is wonderful for you all. That's a wrap!
Sydney based mixed media artist.