Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas
The goal of art is the vital expression of self. Alfred Stieglitz
Last night in the art course I am attending we created an intuitive collage. We were told to get maps (I printed a world map from the computer), and newspapers, magazines, or pages from a book. We outlined the part of the map with clear water we wanted to keep and then tore them out. We were limited for time so we only did one layer of collage. Our instructor Thaniath Siddiqui often does about ten layers. She has videos you can watch on YouTube about Art and Mindfulness and is offering a course online in July called Whyology.
The idea behind intuitive painting and collage is to explore our experiences without knowing where we are going or what memories, ideas, or experiences we will remember. This can be a healing practice for people. As we put words, images, maps, objects, or whatever we can think of onto canvas or watercolor paper.
We need to be careful of bringing computers and water together. Last night I dumped my water container all over my desk. Fortunately, I had put a few pages of paper on the top and the water didn’t hit the keyboard or mouse but I had quite a mess to clean up. One word of advice is to use a flat container for your water and not a tall container as I used.
The painting for this post is the painting created last night. We didn’t have a lot of time but the paintings created by the group were varied and beautiful. Even when we are following the same instructions we are not creating the same piece of art. Different moods, images, and emotions are evident and what the art invokes in others is different.
We don’t know where our journeys into self-expression will take us. Many people may hesitate to put into words what they can express in art. The art is open to interpretation and part of the art may be hidden under layers. It might be the first time we’ve expressed something. As we continue we may express more. We may have hidden dreams or hidden hurts, things we are proud of, or things we are ashamed of. We may have things we don’t understand, things that have always puzzled us, things we question, and things we think we know for sure. Art is a way to get to know ourselves on a deeper level and explore relationships with others, communities, and the world.
Without self-expression, life lacks spontaneity and joy. Without service to others, it lacks meaning and purpose. Lawrence G. Boldt
Finding our voice, expressing ourselves, through art, dance, music, writing, clay, cooking, gardening, quilting, sewing, building, etc is important. How we express ourselves may affect our daily life. If we can express our feelings in a positive way they may do us less harm than when they are bottled up inside. Unexpressed feelings may erupt in our lives in negative ways that had we found a way to express them may have impacted our lives and those we interact with, in a big way.
In art, we can express our fears and we may find acceptance of things we cannot change. We can look at uncomfortable truths about ourselves and history. We may learn to make peace with what is, and make the most positive choices presenting themselves to us.
Listening to Pastor Mark Hughes on Sunday he said, two sons were talking about their life. One said, “I drink because my father did.” The other said, “I don’t drink because my father did.” The same circumstances but different choices and those choices impacted their lives in big ways.
We can’t control the circumstances we were born into. What we get to control is the daily choices we make. and what we make important in our lives. Life is a garden our thoughts are the seeds. We can plant flowers or we can plant weeds. Unknown.
We are who we are, we’ve been through what we’ve been through and self-expression may help us deal with the wounds and heartbreak we feel. What do we have to express and have we found a way to express it positively?
Art is a way to express yourself and through that, you can escape a bad situation. Russel Simmons
Telling the story, acknowledging what has happened and how you feel, is often a necessary part of forgiveness. Unknown
Unexpressed emotions will never die. They are buried alive and will come forth later in uglier ways. Sigmund Freud
Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.
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