Wednesday, March 23, 2011

“Keep me away from the wisdom which does not cry, the philosophy which does not laugh and the greatness which does not bow before children.”
- Kahlil Gibran

It's about joy. It's about being human. Not being afraid to feel. Not being afraid to be humble and simple and truly who you are. That's spiritual power.

There's a better way

The light side vs. the dark side. You can't blame the dark side, they were only doing what they were taught, all they ever knew, the only energies they ever had to learn from, and I guarantee we all have experienced this at some point for better or worse to whatever degree, standard or notion.

Give it up, the light side is here now. There's a better way. You don't have to struggle, cry or complain anymore. We are here to show you that it can be done with cooperation and faith.

That transition is here.

Love Completely

We are not meant to be perfect we are meant to be present. Being present means being alive. What are we so worried about? What are these mental constructs? Who put them there?

I think we could all be having a lot more fun. In the end, we will go wherever we go. The legacy you leave on this planet will follow you. What is that legacy?

Mine is as follows: the woman who loved completely. Love in every action I make. If I don't love it, I need to rethink the situation. That's it. That's the bottom line. Come what may.

The Artist Lock In

This past weekend I participated in Eye Level's Artist Lock in. I have never experienced anything like this. It was my 3rd lock in experience however this one was special for me. Something beautiful happened. I stopped thinking. I went into my heart space and worked without regard for anything else, including how damn tired I was, how badly I wanted to go home and crawl in my bed and think of nothing but sleep. I kept working. I didn't give up, and I was pleased with the results.

Here's how it happened. I arrived wanting to run/cry/crawl in a hole. Here were 24 other artists around me, here was a gallery space that was not the comfort of my studio or home, here was an uncommon situation. I set up. I centered. I breathed. I started painting, and it was hard. I was trying too hard. I was feeling, yeah, I'm at the artist lock in now, it's time to make really cool art. It just didn't happen.

I spent the next hour or so struggling and fighting with my process. After putting two pieces aside that I was working on, an accident came my way. I spilt a jar of ink on my table. I thought well here's the perfect opportunity to make something happen. That's exactly what I thought. I knew I had something on my hands here. I didn't worry about the spilt ink. Is what I did was use the spilt ink. I knew this was the opportune moment. I grabbed some paper. I shuffled around, I messed stuff up, I pulled stuff out, whatever, I did it, and I didn't care.

Colors came alive on my palette, marks happened that felt genuine. I pulled brushes out. I pulled drawing media out. I just started. This is a prime example of what I like to call, "effectively freak out". I effectively freaked out. Alas, I didn't care. And it was beautiful.

Whatever happened happened. I got into it. Finally, I got into my own process. Colors emerged on my paper, marks moved me, the organic motion of the ink just flowed everywhere.

I proceeded to make image after image and did not stop until I was told to sign, price, label my work and go home. Now for anyone in their right mind, that was a damn long time. 24 hours. Standing on one's feet making art. I am a very active artist. I move around a lot, the faster the better, the more energized the better. 24 hours with little food, rest and sleep was nothing short of exhausting. But the beauty of the experience was this-- something in me clicked, something in me came alive, I stopped thinking. It was a spiritual experience, and I knew it.

Think Jimi Hendrix. Think Jim Morrison. Think Van Gough.

It has taken me quite some time to recover from this experience. I was too tired to photograph my work. I have no record of many of the images. But what I have is experience, and that will lead to greater things.

I trust the spirit world.

Monday, March 14, 2011

When I paint I dance

When I paint I dance. I move and I sing and I don't know how to do it any other way. If I don't have space to move and breath, I'd assume save it for another day. I like the organic flow of motion, and I seek to tap into this. Sometimes it takes a little getting used to, a little letting go of the tension and apprehension built up in a day, but when it happens it's magic.

Love to dance. I gotta dance, and when I paint, I dance. Like it's the first time, like it's new all over again. There are so many possibilities, there are so many ideas, there are so many solutions, I'll never get bored.

When I paint I dance, I imagine rain falling and it soothes my nerves. Wet and cool, it falls. I let it go to the ground. I breath and I center and finally, if I'm lucky, I get into the movement.

Ah, it's true, you create your own luck. As you create your own mess, as you create your own perception of everything, and I say keep it steady and faithful.

Dance. Dare to dance. You'll feel good, like it was the first time, your first memory. Wholesome rain fall on me now.

On Immediacy

Quoting Helen Frankenthaler: "A really good picture looks as if it's happened at once. It's an immediate image. For my own work, when a picture looks labored and overworked, and you can read in it--well, she did this and then she did that, and then she did that--there is something in it that has not got to do with beautiful art to me. And I usually throw these out, though I think very often it takes ten of those over-labored efforts to produce one really beautiful wrist motion that is synchronized with your head and heart, and you have it, and therefore it looks as if it were born in a minute."

This quote was written by one of my favorite artists of all time, and I agree.

I think good art comes fast. The stroke of a wrist, the gesture, the impulse, as if by sweet surprise. It's not supposed to look like it was a laborious process, although it is. It's supposed to look like it was fun, and if you stay true to the impulse that got yourself in that mess in the first place, it will be.

I had a professor in college who said, "It's a long preparation for a few moments of innocence". I couldn't agree with him more, and I find now as I am getting more experience, coming into what I want and think and have to say, I find an immense amount of truth in this statement. The long preparation is your life. The innocence is the fact that you kept trying, you kept showing up, you kept holding on as if you knew that glimpse of something real and true deep inside of you would alas come to express itself in the raw moment of genuine energy. You knew this feeling was untouchable and necessary.

True creativity can't be taught. True artistry can't be formulated, packaged and labeled. It's not that easy. You know it or you don't and that's the truth. And if you need it bad enough, if it's in your soul and you will have it no other way than to see it come alive and it's your destiny, it will. You have to be brave. You have to show up. You have to let it go.

There are no words for this release. The results speak for themselves.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

On the Creative Process

Self-cultivation is being alone with yourself and is just as important as the act of creative production. You can’t have results unless you have a process. Processing, cultivation and frolicking time for all creative people, and we are all creative people, is essential.

What is it that you do? How can you change your life so you can alow yourself this space? Let’s take a moment to reflect.

Make a prayer to allow yourself this time, this stolen gift, just for yourself. Let’s take a moment to put a blessing for this space in your life on the altar of self-cultivation.

Can you make your own altar? What would it be like? What would your sketchbook be like? What would your journal be like? What would your hard drives be like? What would your notebooks, bookshelves, draws, boxes and closets be like? I would go as far as to say, that these things are absolutely imperative. They are the life force, the soul, the breathing things of your work. The result, the finished piece, the hung, signed, framed, published, showcased, distributed and performed work is an afterglow of this quest. The real thing lies in your process. What is it like?

You’ve got to dig. And that takes time. Give yourself that time. Get to know who you are and get to know your process. Make sketches, doodles, rough drafts, and unedited versions. Here you will find the things that make up who you are. And your ideas will blossom.

Take the pressure off and treat this time as sanctified, pure and ordained. That’s because it is. Nothing is more important that your process. I think it’s your legacy. It’s what you will leave behind.

Ah, the fresh air of creativity runs through my veins like a gentle breeze. It is cool and easy. It is fresh and forgiven. It is manifested like water, and water is the fuel of life as is cultivation, preservation and expression of the self, the higher self. It is sacred and safe.

Imagine light turned on bright. Channel it through your intention, your power. You have that kind of power.