|First finished painting|
For the past four weeks, and for two weeks to come, I have spent every morning with the artist Flora Bowley. I feed the dog, wait for my first k-cup to drip into my coffee cup, grab a handful of vitamins, and then wander over to the couch and turn on my computer. And every day, Flora has given a little of herself to those taking her class -- advice on how to act courageous even when you aren't feeling that way, how to center yourself with breathing and yoga techniques, how to set an intention for your day or your week, and yes - techniques to paint in an abstract manner. She doesn't give you steps to paint like her. She teaches you how to bring what you have, fearlessly and confidently, to what you want to put on your canvas, or what you want to do in your life. And she shares some of her favorite music, too.
I love Flora's teaching technique. She knows when to give you short bits of technique video (about 3-5 minutes) and when you might need more time to watch her process. I never felt overwhelmed, but I always felt challenged right to the edge of my ability. Which is where we all need to be, isn't it?
I worked hard. It's difficult to push away your conscious, image-making mind and just work intuitively, and to trust that your instincts will take you somewhere other than a big brown blot on your canvas. I woke up every morning excited about the next class and went to bed thinking about it.
|I think this one is finished...|
I prepared for this class by taking a one-week workshop with Carla Sonheim, called Imaginary Creatures. I wanted to practice visualizing images that are in a mixed background, because I know I have had trouble with this in the past and it's exactly what Carla teaches. I think it really helped me, and it was lots of fun. Carla's an excellent teacher. She's clear and direct and gives you little steps each day so you don't become overwhelmed.
Maybe I'll post images of the silly, charming creatures that visited me during that class. But not today. Today is all about this way of thinking, of knowing, of painting -- and about getting the courage to step into the darkness and be confident that a path would appear.
And now I'm ready for the next painting, because I just can't stop doing this...
|Getting ready for my next canvas|