Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Opportunity for Creativity...even in Darkness?

I've talked about and have sung the praises of writer Patti Digh and a few of her books in past blog posts. My favorite of hers so far is Life is a Verb - it changed my way of living and looking at how we spend our days, our moments.  She's also written Creative is a Verb and I picked that up again two nights ago because I finished a novel and NEEDED to read something before bed.

I started rereading but I paid special attention to lines and phrases I had highlighted in the past.  This one really stuck out this time:  "Every single moment of your life is an opportunity for creativity. Even the darkest moments. Perhaps especially them." (p. 14).  Pretty profound as many people think only certain people are creative and I guess I typically think of making a physical piece (painting, book, floral arrangement, etc.) as expressing our creativity.  But these words make me think it's way more than that.  I've had some dark moments mainly due to health concerns and now I just got some test results that aren't so great. Friday I find out what the next step could be as I see the doctor to discuss the results.

Hmmmm...I'm wondering that along with my word of the year "faith" and this quote about dark moments being opportunities for creativity, can I handle this?  Can I handle possibly bad and scary news in a different way?  A different way than I'm used to - catastrophizing and thinking of every worst possible scenario and playing them over and over in my head.  I'm not sure how this can be an opportunity for me to use my creativity but I'm hopeful that I'll find a way.  I hope I can infuse this obstacle, this fear with faith and creativity.

I truly don't know what that will look like, but I plan to keep it in my mind in the upcoming days.  I'm wondering if anyone else actually sees creativity as a "tool" so-to-speak to help with potentially really dark and scary times in their lives.  If anyone has any ideas or examples I'd love to hear them.  I know reaching out is a start because connections between others truly helps when healing is involved.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

New Art for the New Year

The last few months I was so focused on creating Christmas art so once the holidays were over I felt a bit lost in terms of painting! I missed coming up with sweet and whimsical snowmen.

Well I'm feeling like I'm getting back in the groove of non-holiday art. It took my awhile but I think getting my first easel for Christmas helped a bit because it was a fresh way of painting for me. Sometimes something new or painting even in a different room helps kickstart things!

Here are my first two officially completed paintings is 2015.  The vibrant floral piece is called "Summer Carnival."  Flowers are always my favorite because they are colorful and uplifting and remind me of being outside during nicer weather.  Ahem...it's about 5 below here, so seeing these flowers cheers me up a bit.

The second finished piece is on wood, something I'd like to paint on more often because I'm very drawn to hand-lettered, rustic signs.  Not that this one is very rustic but I hope to do more like this.  I started not knowing what saying I wanted on here, just freely painted shapes, symbols, colors, waves. After a few ideas, I thought "Enjoy the Journey" was perfect.  It's a reminder I know I need pretty regularly when I get wrapped up in worry or pushing through to the next day (i.e. Friday) without being with the one I'm presently in.

I hope they give you a little inspiration or a little smile.  I'm feeling good that so far my 2015 has had a good start in my personal life and in my art.  Do you have any sayings that you keep in front of you as reminders to yourself?  I'd love to hear them.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Word of the year - Faith (I think!)

I was sort of hesitating to choose a word for this year.  Not sure why...maybe because I come up with too many words then worry I'll choose the "wrong" one.  The more I thought about it I realized there's no "right" word and if I focus on more than one, that's okay right?  I choose the word "faith" (I think...) for a few reasons, partially related to God and spirituality and partially not.  I went to a Catholic school for eight years and learned about memorizing prayers and being afraid of God and that's about it to be honest.  I am not a practicing Catholic anymore and we haven't attended church in over a year I think.  But I've been feeling the need to have more faith in my life. Faith in God, faith in myself and faith that I can handle the obstacles life throws at me.  

When something scary gets thrown in my face, say health issues for instance, I instantly go into catastrophe, life or death mode.  I realize that is a frightening way to live.  I've been praying more and I find touches of calm when I do.  Those touches of calm help me even if it's just for five minutes. When I talk to friends who have strong faith, they tell me just to give my worries to God.  I've been doing that more and more and it does help me feel better about scary situations.  

So this new year of 2015 I'm going to put my heart into having more faith in God and myself.  I may have a serious surgery on the horizon and if I let it it will ruin my everyday life.  Instead I keep thinking and saying to myself, "God will help me and I can handle this with faith in him."  I'm not saying I'm 100% at ease and not worrying at all, but it's starting to make me feel better and that with faith I can get through most anything.  

Are you partaking in choosing a word of the year for 2015?  If so, I'd love to hear about it.  Hearing what others are focusing on inspires me as well.
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