This week, I’m sharing how “saying yes” in my creative process awakens possibilities beyond the realm of intellectual decision-making. Last week’s blog post “Saying Yes Leads to the Next Yes” explored how opening to possibilities in life as they speak to me on a soul level, can create space for profoundly wonderful things to happen. The same is true with my artistic process. Sometimes, I start with an idea or sketch which makes its way to the canvas or paper. Other times, I like to sit in the stillness and wait. Rather than put my idea on the surface, I want to see what will reveal itself to me. Being receptive rather than being “in charge”. Allowing rather than controlling.
INSPIRATION THAT AWAKENED MY CREATIVITY
Several weeks ago, I decided to do something I had never done before. This isn’t news. I love trying new things! Sounds of Spirit was performing nearby and I had the opportunity to attend. I had never heard of them before but their website intrigued me so off I went with a sleeping bag, my journal, and a water bottle. It was a spiritually moving and creatively inspiring experience. The group uses a rich variety of instruments, nature sounds, and human voices to transport the listeners to a different place. The outward experience of being in the space with them led to an inward journey for many of us in attendance. I was so deeply moved that I bought their CD and listened to it over and over as I worked in my art studio.
ALLOW MYSELF TO BE A CHANNEL
On the day I created the sketch above, I turned up the volume on my CD player and let the music wash over me and through me. I kept my eyes closed until imagery started to appear. Then, I opened my eyes and simply transferred those images to the paper. I felt like I was a channel not a creator at that point. I said “Yes” to one image, which informed the next, which informed the next. I allowed the process to happen freely without interference from my analytical mind or pesky inner critic.
I started with the 3 large repeated shapes in the background. Then, the larger seated figure wanted to appear. Then, little images around her began to tell their own story. These figures informed the border and smaller symbols around the edges. Each “yes” lead to the next “yes”. The same thing happened when I chose my first color to wash over the larger areas. Each choice naturally flowed into the next.
BEING BOLD MEANS BEING VULNERABLE
Who said being bold meant being confident or certain? Not me! Having the courage to be bold is also having the courage to be vulnerable and exposed. Being bold doesn’t mean I’m always going to get it right in art or in life. It means I have the courage to try. There is a measure of risk in creating art that is a genuine reflection of who I am and where I am on my journey. There is even greater boldness and vulnerability in allowing others to see it. For I’m aware that those who truly look at my art with open minds and hearts will have the ability to catch a brief glimpse inside the soul of the artist.
After many hours in the studio and many layers of pencil, gouache, and ink, AWAKENING was complete. I was awakened to the possibilities created by saying one “yes” after another. I hope this piece awakens something in you, too.