Mother's Favorite Chair - Janis Commentz - watercolor, ink - 10"x7" - cards available
As the entire structure of our daily lives has turned a corner, I reach out to you with a voice of encouragement. At this point, we are inundated with advice, news, and badly timed humor. I listen less to grim news, and the news is grim, and more and more to inspiring words.
My life, as has yours, has taken a completely different path this month. Yet I feel compelled to set my sight on hope.
Mind, body, spirit and soul are connected. Every aspect affects our creative life. For me, reading my bible, poetry, inspirational travel journals, watching short creative video clips of friends watercoloring, walking and gardening has kept me grounded this week. Spirit connects us with God, and our soul is where we express our passions.
Let me share the encouragement I am gathering and some of the tips I’d be sharing if you attended one of my painting workshops.
Acronyms help me to discover new ideas, and here is mine.
I will write about each letter separately in a post.
An engagement can mean a promise, assurance. In think a promise of reward can be very important right now—the promise of beauty, hope fulfilled, pride. We are creative beings made in God’s image. We were made to be creative.
Consider your personal toolbox and gather your personal tools:
If you were attending one of my painting workshops, I would talk about your intentions and observations.
What is your intention today? (This is geared to painting, but you’re creative; adapt for your activity.)
Or to paint at all? To express yourself? record a moment in time? Therapy? To apply color and create a desirable image?
As with other activities weaving, sewing – one experiences the tactile joy of the materials.
Painting—is a practice much like yoga or baseball. Each time you show up to “play,” your brain becomes familiar with a pattern of activities.
I would encourage you to write one statement in your notebook:
“I came today with the intention of ____________________________________.”
What is it you are drawn to looking at?
I hope this is enough to inspire you and get you moving.
This week I have been painting from a photo I took of a close friend in her beautiful non-desert garden, picking cherry tomatoes. I only work on this painting, when my spirit is lifted. If watching corny romantic movies or listening to music helps, consider them tools! It is still IN PROGRESS, as am I. Watch the slideshow below.
You may have your family around you. If so, consider doing these activities as a group! Gather the children and ask them the workshop prompt questions about intention and observation.
Cherry Tomatoes (In progress) - Janis Commentz - acrylic on canvas - 30"x30"
I leave you for now with some words of inspriration:
If I can stop one heart from breaking – Emily Dickinson
If I can stop one heart from breaking,
I shall not live in vain;
If I can ease one life the aching,
Or cool one pain,
Or help one fainting robin
Unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain
Dreams - Langston Hughes
Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.
Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow.
For I know the plans that I [have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11
Let’s get started.
My prayers are with you all, and I wish you comfort and encouragement as you stay within the confines of your world and create.
Inspired by all of you,
Winter Carnations - Janis Commentz - Pastel on Paper (sold) cards available
Note: The last 15 months have challenged us! This month I encourage you to learn from the isolation and I wish you a cautious, but joyous June reopening!
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