A new beginning.
But first – reflection.
The yearning to create art for myself had been so strong for the past 5 years or so. Why had it been such a struggle for me? I was so stuck. I was putting the need to make money and what I deemed the necessary daily chores in the way of it. Always finding something more important to work on or tend to to keep me from diving in and letting go. I couldn’t get out of that loop. My sweet friend Linda knew… she bought me a book on daily painting which was so inspiring, (apple exercises) it actually worked enough to make me realize how bad I wanted to paint, yet I couldn’t get out of my routine, my story… I was in fear. Fear of the unknown… and how will I pay my bills?
My sweet friend Michele knew my struggle. I chanted about how a place to get away to would snap me into it. “If I only had a place to go with no distractions, no people needing this or that, no computer and none of my habitual tasks in my home environment.” And then, she bought this big old building on the Main Street in Greenwich, NY and invited me to rent a small space on her bottom floor. The building was once a Post Office, and what would be my space was a doctor’s office. Michele tore into it fast with a sledge hammer, and soon I found myself there too, on my hands and knees scrubbing the old doctor's linoleum floor, imagining it with a new coating of sludge and grime, but this time, mine… paint splatterings and droppings of gold leaf. It excited me so much – the evidence of my creative unleashing all over that old floor!
That was just a month before the pandemic began. By May of 2020 I was moving in with my old oak drawing board and new/old Geneseo student’s easel given to me 5 years earlier by my daughter, Erin. Lots of great energy in that thing… it was left on the curb after the college dissolved their art program. And, my girlie chandelier… I finally had a high ceiling to hang some twinkly sparkly lighting! The space was just large enough to get me started. My friend Lisa had commissioned me to do a painting of a funky piece of collage art we had seen on Pinterest. We found it a few years back when we were working on her logo for her restaurant. “Stella” which in Italian means “Star” was chosen for Stella Pasta Bar & Bakery. Doing this piece seemed the perfect celestial christening. I’m not big on using someone else’s designs but this one was just so fun and it would make Lisa so happy. I think what made her happy the most was that I would be painting, regardless of what it was... she was my cheerleader and wanted ME to be happy. It was my first painting in my new studio. It was incredible to sit at that easel and lay down the first brush strokes… I’m here – it has begun.
That summer tho, was jammed packed with outside influences that made it difficult to get to Greenwich. I was suddenly back to tending to my home, this time to create a “COVID wedding venue” out of the grounds surrounding our house. My daughter Haley was forced to cancel her destination barn wedding, scheduled for September 5th, 2020, and go with the protocol dictated by the powers that be for that summer. I ended up spending most of my time yardening, gardening and preparing. I actually loved doing it… it was therapeutic, a creative outlet in itself, an alternative which freed me from the usual distractions and allowed me to open up. At the same time I was being uplifted by all of this therapy, my friend Lisa had found out her cancer had returned and the prognosis was fatal. Just writing that sentence has sent me into a place that is forcing me to stop. I just don’t know how to describe what this meant to me.
I did a lot of growing spiritually during that time. I began a daily morning meditation practice late 2019 that kept me centered through all of the crazy. I am still practicing to this day. This isn’t your woo-woo stuff… this is essential. Physically, mentally, emotionally, energetically, and spiritually. Lisa passed away in October of 2020. It knocked me down so hard. I am grateful tho, that I was able to spend some quality time with her, make a garden for her with my sister, sing with her with "the bitches", finish the painting and finally say goodbye. We had so many plans...
The New Moon ~ It's all about a new beginning... again.
Anyway, here I am a year later. I have learned the true meaning of the term “starving artist” – it's a thing. And, I've learned that it takes a long time to truly establish one’s self on a new path such as I have chosen. I have transitioned from the computer work to painting portraits and live event paintings to generate some income and the universe has blessed me with that. There is so much love and joy in that work. And... that yearning to create art for myself – I have had breakthroughs creating some beautiful floral works which I love and want to share. It inspires me to do more. To keep going. It has been a period of growth and learning and I am in a better place. Researching and following other artists and soaking up their experiences and knowledge. I am evolving. The work I am sharing now is a baby step into what I hope is the best I could become. I feel like a student. Re-learning how to mix colors and hold a brush! I am still tight and have dreams of going batshit crazy all over a giant canvas! To really feel. To channel. To create work that makes others feel. The florals make me feel. Miracles, brought to you by Mother Earth. They are communicating with us... to us... and I think that maybe most people don’t see or hear or feel them. I know my work is rudimentary at present. I can hardly wait to see what comes with time and practice… but that is just it. I need to let go of the need to be at the outcome. It IS all about the journey.
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