I have found that I am happiest when I have a project -- preferably a creative one! And I hope that during this unparalleled time, you are finding projects to keep you not only occupied but fulfilled.
Last month I offered tips to nurture creativity.
Nurture creativity in yourself and others:
Look for beauty in everyday objects and nature.
Write in a journal - your observations and your reactions.
Organize and sort your supplies.
Study a new subject: I’m studying French with a free ap.
Rekindle an old hobby.
When you get a creative idea - go with it!
Do not fear opinions of others or your own inner critic.
As we now move into our 8th week of isolation, we are finding the experience is definitely pushing our envelopes as we strive to remain strong, cheerful and considerate…and as those who disagree with you, whether they are across the bed, hall, town, country or world, are taking a bit more of your determination!
I hope you are pursuing painting, dancing, singing with gusto! In March I created an acronym for this year! How appropriate it is!
Word 3: “Cultivate a sense of play!” As the world is in a serious condition, we need a sense of humor and a dose of laughter to keep us healthy, as much as we need to isolate, disinfect and self-distance.
Remember moments during your childhood when you laughed raucously! When you giggled as a toddler or...as a teen! What brings a huge smile to your face now, even if you are alone. Do you still chuckle out loud when you read something funny?
When did you last allow yourself to PLAY? If you have young children around you, you are most likely reading fairly takes, silly joke books, or playing silly games – just to brighten your time together.
US News & World Report says play can make you healthy, happy and more productive. Even during the pandemic:
In your creative experience, what brings you joy?
I think color is an important mood booster. Did you ever open a new box of Crayolas with a frown on your face? Maybe it’s a new set of pastels or paints that brings delight today. Or nail polish? Or food coloring!?
I have seen a LOT of creativity with colorful masks lately!
In the northern hemisphere, it is a beautiful spring! And for the southern, autumn. Two of the most color laden seasons of the year.
Color-mixing can be an enchanting exercise. You can make a chart or just dabble! You may create gorgeous colors – or mud. (But then you know how to make mud when you need it!)
Non painters may enjoy a little coloring so I have created some coloring pages to print and color—you can follow the original painting or created your own unique work of art! Here is a link to a free Printable pdf of the these coloring pages. Click here.
Many exercises and experience help us to think about color. Sometimes just looking at works by favorite artists inspires your palette. The impressionists often used bright sunny garden inspired colors. Seasonal colors have a specific palette. One very fun ideas that I call using scent sense (and giving credit to painting teacher Pauline Agnew) is inspired by scents—from aromatic oils, fruit whatever you enjoy. Scent is also a powerful reminder of memory. Before room scents were created, my grandmother place apple wedges on light bulbs—to create an apple aromatherapy! Mix up the colors that the scent elicits and play with abstracts. To me, the eucalyptus made me think of sagey greens, and golden browns. Use your imagination. Interestingly, each of these abstracts began with a mental image of somewhere I knew with eucalyptus trees@!
Play with stokes when imagining a painting by a favorite painter—such as Monet or any favorite colors. You may even appreciate the colors absorbed by your paper towel or baby wipe!
Play with acrylic (or other) paint on gessoed watercolored paper or canvas. This demo turned into a work of art.
Bright Agave, Janis Commentz, 10 x 10" acrylic on canvas
Squawk!, Janis Commentz, 6" x 6" , acrylic on wood, (SOLD)
Sometimes a crazy idea or color will guide you. I awoke with this image of a yellow Joshua Tree in my head and painted it.
Yellow Joshua Trees, Janis Commentz, 18" x 18" acrylic on wood panel, (SOLD)
Have no fear—not a painter?
Play with collage…poetry....Tear magazine images. Glue to a sheet of paper or cardboard with starch or a glue stick or if you have none of these—flour and water to make a paste-apply with paint brush.
Dreaming of Paris, paper collage, Janis Commentz, 2019
Flower Pots at the Luxembourg Palace,Janis Commentz, ink on paper NFS
I’m not suggesting your baking will match the amazing Paris macarons of Ladurée but allow yourself to go a little crazy with baking cookies or other goodies. Just Google crazy, creative colorful cookies!
Photo by Janis Commentz, Ladurée store window, Paris 2018
Whichever project you embark on this week, I just hope you stop, take a recess for your soul, and play. A we know, play can elevate our emotions and dispel anxiety!
Download my FREE coloring pages here.
Stay healthy! Love to you all!
Note: As our lives have been shaken by COVID 19, I invite you to check into my blog for encouragement and creative activities. Be well. May God keep you safe.
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