At the beginning of this month I came across the Ted Talk with Artist Beatrice Coron that I posted above. And I was so moved by the video I even shared it with my FEARLESS™ Painters in DEEP. What I liked about the video is actually a few things.
#1-- I love that after a rich life of various jobs in travel, sheep herding, truck driving, and other random stuff--Coron decided at age 40 it was time to be an Artist. But seriously, you have to watch it--there is something about the way she says it--her conviction really sparked something inside me.
#2-- I love that her Art and her journey as an Artist is so related to her devotion, that I feel was what caused her to live a life following such random jobs. She's a woman that loves stories--and loves collecting them and sharing them--and, in her Art--she loves depicting them through her paper cutting. I really dig that.
#3-- Last, kind of related to #2--I really admire how her Art and her Artist life has a deeper message. A purpose if you may.
This video really got me thinking about my own Art--my own Artist journey and purpose of the work I do. And I'll be honest, I got a little bummed.
My own fear gremlin--inner critic--banana peal--whatever you want to call it started to gnaw away at my mind and even pour a few drops of venom into my heart. But for me--when fear shows it's nasty fangs--I don't tend to wince away--but instead do the opposite--I call in the troops and go forward full force.
Which sounds all great and dandy, doesn't it? But truth be told--it always ends up in a silly little battle against myself. Because if you haven't gotten the memo yet--the fear gremlin/inner critic/banana peal/whatever you want to call it--is really and truly simply ourselves. So any forms of artillery against it is usually fruitless in the end. Our fear gremlin, just like the more softer kinder parts of ourselves, needs as much compassion and love as well.
I kind of forgot that.
And the reason why I forgot that is because my fear gremlin is a real magician! It loves to disguise itself as ambition or under some kind of noble cause. Yeah--once I did a drawing of my fear gremlin and it was a cross between Lance Armstrong and the character Frasier from the ol' tv show. Do you get what I'm saying? A little nuts!
Anyways, Frasier Armstrong had me believing that it was time to pump up my game. That I needed to put in some major elbow grease and get those ol' painting skills of mine back up to par--because Frasier Armstrong had told me that I was slipping. I was failing big time. And well, if I wasn't careful--who knows what fate lies ahead for me as an Artist. And then he unbuttoned his suit jacket and jumped on his bike and rode away.
All of this happened right around the time Art Every Day Month was a startin!
So, I decided this was my opportunity to indulge ol' Frasier Armstrong and create a little project for myself--I called myself a "student of color" (cause I knew Frasier Armstrong would like that)--and I went ahead and started painting still lives.
Which was great. Was fun. I even purchased some brand new Liquitex Heavy body paints--and I got really into pushing myself.
But here's the thing. I already do Art every day. To be honest, I have been since I was a little itty bitty myself--and since Dirty Footprints Studio is my full time job, well, it pretty much lends itself to doing Art every day as it is.
Annnnd on top of all this--I was also in the middle of hosting DEEP--which, ask any of my FEARLESS™ Painters--is not a cake walk. So what the hell was I doing taking on this other project when I already had enough on my plate?
That's when I realized that good ol' Frasier Armstrong had paid me a visit--and was tricking me once again.
You see, I don't know why. Maybe I can blame it on being a Capricorn in the first house, or on my pregnancy hormones, or just being a little neurotic--but lately I've been feeling that what I do isn't "good enough". Ok, well, not that it isn't good enough--that it really doesn't have much of a purpose. There is a little bit of a difference there.
Frasier Armstrong had me believing that if I put more effort into refining my skills that somehow my purpose will be revealed to me. And right after I completed this Ganesha painting that I absolutely adore--guess what?
Something really clicked for me. And that is...the purpose behind my paintings--my Art-- has nothing to do with how I paint it--or even what I paint--or even how well I paint. It has everything to do with the insights and big a-ha moments I have as I paint and even after I paint. The painting is just the tool--it's the yoga pose on the yoga mat--the sugar in the cookie--the mango in my smoothie. It's just the vehicle for what really is my greater purpose for the Art work I do--and that is to become more deeper aware and connected to Creative Source, and for myself-then to share these insights with others--through my blog, my workshops, and just in how I live my life. Period. End of story.
For me creating Art and then sharing my insights go hand-and-hand. Most of what I write about and especially teach is revealed to me through my FEARLESS™ Painting Process. For me Art is a practice. I finally fully got that.
Sure I've been saying that for years now--but Frasier Armstrong was always riding circles around me on his bike telling me different. That sometimes, well, I get a little confused.
Starting this little project of mine for Art Every Day month was huge. Huge! Huge! Huge!! It made me fully realize that for me--no extra elbow grease is needed. No squeezing in more things to do on my to-do list just so my skill or technique will impress Frasier Armstrong or the masses. That's not what I'm about--that's not what my purpose as an Artist is. That's not what I'm here to actually do with the blessed skills and talents I already possess that get stronger day by day as I follow my true path anyways.
That damn Frasier Armstrong. You kind of have to love him! Our fear gremlins--as much as they can seem like an obstacle and a nuisance--there is always some kind of lesson or truth in their presence as well. Cause, like I said--Frasier Armstrong is just me. A more uppity ambitious me--but through that part of myself--I got to see the real me.
And the sweetest thing of all is that it took Mr. Ganesha himself--the Hindu God of Breaking Down Obstacles to help me see what I really needed to see.
So I have to say, with the same conviction that Beatrice Coron has in her video--November's Art Every Day Month challenge was a huge success--even though it turned out to be nothing that I expected it would be.