Something has been shifting for me in recent months. It's been slow ... and gradual ... a sense of going within, gathering my beliefs up and examining them to see what really feels true for me.
This painting is the perfect example of how I'd been feeling. On the outside it 'fit' with how I thought things 'should' look. Visually it worked; yet to me it felt hollow ... not yet full, juicy and ripe with richness - nor did it feel authentic. It had been sitting in a cupboard waiting until I felt ready to move forward. It was time to go within, peel back the layers of what felt true and real for me.
First, I let go of the background, so I could truly focus within.
Visually, this meant creating a darkened wash over the background to see the features more fully.. Emotionally, It was like going into a deepened state, a place to quieten down the voices and patterns in my mind and simply see things in a new light.
From here it became apparent that the 'pretty' inside of the dream catcher did not work for me. I knew it didn't feel true, yet I didn't know where to go from here. So I did all I could ... put one foot in front of the other and put beauty on the line, in exchange for some honest soul searching.
The process of Soul-Searching within a painting can be both challenging and anxiety inducing at times. It's about stepping fully into vulnerability - completely into the unknown, without a plan other than meeting myself fully.
The other challenging aspect about painting with feeling, is seeing them emerge visually, in paint. It's confronting to see the vulnerable, child-like leaves and flowers, reflecting the fragile place within me that still feels unsure, meeting a growing sense of strength within.
I wonder, "Can others see that I don't have it all together all the time?" I'm willing to share this about myself, because it is true and real for me ... and possibly, for you also.
At this point, it was alluring to stop and consider the pretty colour scheme and powerful energy arising in the artwork. Part of me wanted to keep these colours, stop here, because here looked 'good enough'. Yet I have learned that for me, making Art is about FEELING. The stage above may have looked pretty, yet it still lacked the depth of feeling I had within. I still had more to say, in paint. My feelings still yearned to be expressed, my Soul ached to be felt fully.
As the painting slowly changed, so did my understanding. I searched within for what parts I wished to meet, within. Notions of Presence, Forgiveness, Letting Go of Inauthenticity, Family and Opening Up to New Ways of Living, all came forward. I journaled colours, shapes and symbols to illustrate these notions.
A few days before, my son had given me some gum nuts he'd collected, along with some gum branches I'd found on an afternoon walk. These items felt like home; tangible symbols of my present experience and I began to add them in. From here, the painting took on a Life of its own.
This journey of this painting has taught me so many things. Patience. Forgiveness. Trust. But most of all, the Honouring of Self and our innate sense of Intuitive Wisdom to guide us forward.
I am learning, day-by-day, to accept and allow my softness and vulnerabilities to flow through me. I'm beginning to realise that Understanding is less about knowledge and more about INTUITIVE FEELING ... and that not-knowing is perfectly okay.
In fact, it's only in the space of the unknown that anything new can be birthed ... and beautiful new directions can arise for us to see, seek, create and choose. Perhaps not-knowing is our greatest gift for transformation.
All my Love,
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