Thoughts on health… the creative process aint always pretty.

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Hi! I spent a good portion of the weekend having fun with my paints and papers and favorite quotes for a set of artwork I’m creating called Quote Splat. For no other reason then I woke up one day and decided to write down my top 10 favorite quotes of all time and illustrate them.

I’m going to start showing them to you every Wednesday starting this Wednesday and giving them away each week for free!

Because creating anything… whether it is art or a meal or a new way to help your loved ones laugh or a new hairstyle for your dog (you should have seen my poor puppy after I took the electric shears to him… all I can say is at least he is cool now in this August Lowcountry heat!) it all invites energy and health into your life.

I have been working so hard on canvases and custom art and necklaces and book illustrations that I haven’t had much time for creating just for the sake of creating.

So this weekend I challenged myself to write down some of my favorite quotes and imagine what they would look like if they were pictures. And not just imagine it, but create it. Two different things entirely, I found out.

And I challenge you, if you are looking to add a little creativity to your Monday, to write down your fav quote too, and illustrate it.

No you do not have to paint anything, although you could!

No you do not have to color it in, although you could.

No you do not have to frame it or even keep it (although you might want to!) this is just art for the sake of creating!

Doodle it on the side of your notebook. On the margin of your phonebook. On the envelope of the junk mail you just sorted. Art with no goal oriented purpose besides to let energy flow.



As I was beginning mine, I had this exact dialog run through my head:

“I have no idea what to do with this one.” Panic is starting to send negative messages through my brain.

“Well, just pick it up and start it.” This is from my calmer, maternal part of self that is trying to get me to start moving on this before I decide it’s too much trouble and stop altogether.

“Okay, I’m holding it in my hands and paint is staring at me and I still have no idea what to do.” Frustration rising. Annoyance mounting. Little voices saying to me “and you call yourself an artist? That’s a laugh…” whispering.

“Just pick a background color, that’s all. Sheesh. Stop whining and pick a color and GO.” My last ditch effort to just drop my natural impulse to want to have a final picture or vision in my head before I even begin… most times I have to learn this lesson over and over again… just do the NEXT STEP. Do not jump to the end result.

In fact, it’s usually worse if I have an end result in mind, because then when the artwork takes shape and it reveals itself to me and doesn’t start lining up with my imagined end result, it’s easy to get frustrated. Better to not have a vision and just ask the paper to reveal itself to you. Every single time I realize that *I* am off the hook here… it’s not up to me to create art, it’s up to life to reveal it to me instead, the art flows.

So I picked pale blue and started slapping it all around the page with no direction. Still, no idea what to do next. So I keep slapping on more blue and now some white and a hint of pink, which is turning some parts of the page purple.

And then it hits me, exactly what needs to go in this corner. And as I wait for the paint to dry so I can begin this next step… a full vision of what I want for the rest of the page. Now I have my vision and I can follow this loosely, still allowing the unfolding to be revealed to me.

And I wanted to share with you what my creative process looks like, because it looks like this almost every single time. It is no different when I create art, or other artists create art, or when you create art. Each of us has to drop the pressure we put on ourselves, the preformance anxiety, and just go. No ones idea is any better then yours. No one else’s art is any better then yours. Some may have skills in certain technical areas, some may even have more training and schooling in art (I have none) and yet, no one’s art is any better then anyone elses.

If you point out art that might be more technically complex or more lifelike or what have you… is that truly better then your child’s crayon scribble? No. You know it’s not and I know it’s not. And it isn’t better then what each of us express whenever we drop the idea that we need to know where we are headed before we start, and just go. Taking one step at a time, letting each layer bring up to us what it needs next.

Each time we create anything, the more we drop a fixed goal and the more we just focus on releasing the energy of the current moment, the more we allow the creative process and the healing process to flow.

Here is a sneak peek of the corner of my first couple of Quote Splats:



More on how the creative process and the healing process are intertwined in future posts.

For now, I’d love to hear what your favorite quotes are, and I look forward to sharing some of mine with you here next. Come back on Wednesday to see my first Quote Splat… and if you like it, it’s yours! xoxo, Laura