The Process of De-Funking

August 21st, 2007

I woke up in such a funk this morning. I think it was sunny out, but my head seemed gray and gloomy. The turn to darker days always takes a bit of a toll on me. I went in to town to do some errands and consciously tried to lift my spirits, breathing deeply and noticing all that was lovely in and around me. It helped.

Got some work done, took Sadie to the vet for her check-up (she's a little heavier, my neighbor calls her "fat raccoon", but overall she's a healthy 10 year old kitty), brought Sadie home (after which she darted under the bed and didn't come out for a few hours (dinner, of course, brought her out of hiding) and it seems she's forgiven me for taking her to get poked and prodded. The fiansor is out late with his business partner which was good timing because of my late start today and having some work to do.

Some art for you...This is from last night. And it's a great example of making art when you don't necessarily feel like it before you start (it was just lovely to play with caran d'ache once I got started) and also of how doodles can lead to something more. During the day yesterday, I was daydreaming a bit and doodling while listening to a podcast. I doodled and scribbled and saw the figure of a woman, who became a tree, who became this piece of art, which is about 10"x11" with caran d'ache on watercolor paper. I'm calling her, "Mother Earth" for now, but I also think of her as "Spring" and something else that hasn't quite come to me yet.

And then another piece of the "Subway Stories" series. This one, I struggled with the name, but decided on calling it "Copley" after a stop in town that I think of as a kind of center. This piece is 8"x8" with acrylic and paper collaged on cradled wood board.

I had some cool experiences while painting tonight. Little bits that I just love. In the cup of water which I used for my brushes, I was wiping the brush on the inside of the cup a bit to get a touch of water on a brush with paint on it and when I looked inside the cup, I noticed that one of the wipes made a very distinct face of a smiling fox. Hehe, love that! So, I painted the fox on a piece of scrap paper so I could remember him. And then within the painting, one brush stroke, very much resembled the shape of a bird, which gave me an idea for a painting which I scribbled down on another piece of scrap paper to remember for later. I love finding impressions of an image in odd places. Sometimes they are quite distinct and other times just a suggestion of a form, but they're great sparks for later creative adventures. Inspiration seems to be everywhere if my antennas are tuned in to the proper station. Love it.

16 Responses

Can I just say that I absolutely LOVE the Mother Earth one? I find it amazing how you can begin “just doodling” and end up with something so nice. But then again, I’ve always noticed that my best photos are the ones I took just to “finish the roll” or “because I was bored.” Strange how that works. It’s as though our subconscious is capturing something we can’t yet understand.

Oh I definitely need to take inspiration from you! My artwork has been put to the side at the moment as I have so much other work on but I am missing it every day. I am amazed at what you can come up with when doodling – the places it can take you. Beautiful works of art.

Beautiful :)

she looks like she’s reaching towards the sky, calling for someone to hear what she has to say, yet, she has no mouth.

I love changing my perception in that way too. I’ll see hundreds of images in the carpet or the paint on my walls, or in the raindrops running towards the window sill. Only recently have I started noting them down or sketching them out. I look forward to seeing what your inspiration produces.

In the meantime, your Spring Mother is stunning! I love the upward glance and the hopefulness she symbolizes; I love that her hopefulness is grounded in the earth, in reality. It’s beautiful!

How much time do you commit to a piece like that one?

These are great, really nice.

Glad you are sticking to the Month’s Creative pledge… I’m still struggling, mostly because of the summer school hols, and also because I’m not grabbing my opportunities when I can. Same old excuse of ‘not feeling like it’ – which you have nicely dispelled with this post. Well done Leah!

You’re a busy bee with the wedding planning, but it’s nice that you take some treasured moments to notice the beauty that is around you.
ps. I’m loving my purchase (Full Moon). She hangs on my bedroom wall where I can admire her from my bed as I read my books. She looks a lot like my mom when she was young. Oh.. and I guess you know what my real name is now! LOL.xo

Leah, these images are so beautiful. I love the tree and how much strenght the trunk contains–so solidly rooted. There is a lot I could learn from that piece.

I also enjoy reading about your painting thoughts…the thoughts you have while painting. It is so interesting, the things that go on in one’s mind when we give ourselves a chance to just let go.

Lots of love to you. Shine bright.

The subway series is so cool, Leah, and your ‘Mother Earth’ piece is just beautiful.
I love playng with caran d’ache. The light and the weather are changing a little more every day here, too, even though it still is hot in the afternoons; I’ve felt in a bit of a funk off and on, maybe because of that, too. Hope you’re feeling better soon! xo

p.s. Are there any creative podcasts you would recommend?

with all you’ve got going planning for the wedding, i’d say you’re quite prolific with your artwork. and you know how i feel about the subway series – i love it so much. i’m DONE with this cold, gray weather and was counting on the last 2 weeks of august being sunny, warm and spent at the town pool. the fact that it’s dark now at 8pm makes me nuts. xo

You amaze me. How can you create so often? I love that you saw a fox! One of very favorite games to play with my daughter is “cloud shapes”.

“Inspiration seems to be everywhere if my antennas are tuned in to the proper station.” So true, Leah. So very true. We often don’t realize what a slight tweaking of the antennae it would take to tune in.

I love the Mother Earth piece–such incredible strength in her legs/roots! Wonderful–And you’re so right about the doodling–I forget that. Love the way that black ink looks on the white paper–

The subway art is rockin! So many layers and scenerios and possible meanings in it. So many peoples’ stories walking and riding along with them! The use of the subway map is wonderful! I didn’t catch it at first, but it clicked and made me say “wow!” Even more special. It adds a new depth and dimension to the pieces, as well as being related to the subject.

Love the colours you are using in both the monochromatic and painterly pieces, and the calligraphic ink letters are just beautiful!

Wish I could tell you more and read more thoroughly, but I have to get to bed… I’ll come back to check-in later!
Take care,
Amy xo

I love the Mother Earth one. Music + doodling = brilliance. I was recently thinking about how creativity is a spiritual practice. Does that notion ever strike you?

Another remarkable piece. I love the color in the Mother Earth piece. I especially love her full hips that seem to be pointint out of the pix.

Well done my friend!

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