Friday, January 18, 2019

One thing that making art is teaching me

I made a wise decision about 20 years ago when I decided to pursue art-making as a hobby. I'm not someone who was a child prodigy artist, one of those kids who drew all the time. I liked making stuff as a kid but I couldn't draw realistically or fast, which I took to assume I had no talent. But I so love color that I gave a drawing class a try in 1997 and have been at it every since. It is one of the biggest pleasures in my life.

In addition, I'm finding that making art is teaching me (or reminding me ) about life. The past few days I've been reminded about the importance of being open to many possible outcomes of our efforts. We do the footwork, as we say in AA, and leave the results up to Spirit. This is so much more peaceful for me than trying to control the outcome.

When I'm painting, I may have something in mind when I start (a reference photo, an idea that's crossed my mind), but my work goes best when I release that after a few minutes and follow my intuition. Staying open to all the possible outcomes as I choose colors and brush strokes and shapes and light is thrilling. It doesn't always turn out as a favorite, but I learn something in the surprises and in the doing.

Turning this idea of being open to many outcomes for my day and my encounters and my experiences can't help but make my life richer.

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