Monday, September 4, 2017


It's been years since I sat down and finished a painting.  This weekend, I began and ended two.  My creative block is letting up.  It's funny to contrast that with the stale air in the scorched Bay Area.  Temperatures here climbed to 110 degrees at my house.  The air is sooty and choking due to fires in Northern California and Oregon combined with the normal smog that comes from still air in the area.  Needless to say, I wasn't spending much time outdoors, and I had expected to feel stifled.

Out of boredom and a bad case of the fidgets, I pulled out a canvas and some watercolor crayons.  I had intended to lay down a colorful background to transfer a quote over.  The first painting was swirling mass of colors nothing like I intended.  It was an amazing release of energy.

I didn't realize until I sat down with paint in hand that I didn't need to start with inspiration and then gather my tools, I needed to let go and play.  Inspiration came from feeling the tools in my hands and the blank canvas in front of me. I needed to stop thinking and play. With a movie on the t.v. and the baby trying to steal my paint brushes, I sank into the process of spreading paint on canvas.

Being slightly distracted sometimes help us get past our blocks.  Not thinking too hard lets us just be.  As much as learning to let go of the multitasking mentality is good for us, being too focused can keep us from starting anything risky. Fear of failure gets int eh way. We over think and talk ourselves out of experimenting, and it keeps us stuck in the rut we desperately want to escape.

If you're feeling stagnant, I'm inviting you to spend some time being mindless.  Knit, crochet, doodle, paint, spread paint on a piece of paper.  Watch t.v., listen to music, chit chat with friends.  Have a drink or two, if that's what helps you relax. Split your attention. Get out of your own head and let go of your ideas for a little while.  Let things flow out of you.  You might be pleasantly surprised to find that this is exact;y what you need to get ideas and energy flowing again.

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