Art Days

This summer I’m taking on a venture that makes me feel all kinds of vulnerable but I think it’s important for my growth. A few posts back you guys got to experience the crazy emotions I felt about myself. I can’t say that they are gone, but God has dealt with a lot of what I was believing and confirmed in my heart the lies. I am feeling MUCH more fulfilled. I realize that I pine for making art a lot, but I have a life that is so rewarding it is hard for me to elevate painting to a level where it brings me as much joy as my little family. It’s tunnel vision a little bit, and I’ve found myself more than once not having much to talk about with fellow artists. I have felt that pain in my heart when others are interviewed, celebrated, promoted or just uber-productive. I MUST remind myself of what is life-giving to me right now. One of the first paintings I did when I entered into motherhood was Lifeblood, a portrait of Josiah. I was so overwhelmed by how much God had done for me and for my boy, that the painting sprung from a passionate wave of worship. Many of my paintings have been a reflection of thankfulness and praise for my God who gives me good gifts. Well, these days these good gifts don’t nap for me anymore, and they have homework, playdates, bigger appetites, and bigger demands for entertainment. I can’t ignore that art is a large part of my life, but I have to take care of everyone. I don’t always like it, but I love them all, it’s an expression of my love. That’s it.
What has sprung out is a desire to interact with not just my children, but with other kids. And do art, which I love. I started small art classes this summer doing some of my favorite lessons from the school year. It has been humbling and fun. I have started to question myself. Am I doing something that is worthwhile? Are the kids having fun? Do people like me? All those questions that we ask ourselves, they come up every Thursday. But it’s important for me, and for my kids. They learn to interact with me as a teacher, and I get to interact with them and their friends in an enviroment where we are creating. I have met some wonderful kids, and got to know others that I just knew from playground games. Teaching is rewarding for this mama. Each day is a teaching experience when you’re a mama, it’s just more fun to leave your house, set up lots of markers and paint and go through one page of paper after another.
I got to paint this afternoon for about 3 hours. I asked Cat the other night if I should go back to painting more serious, traditional things or keep doing things that are fun. She encouraged me to keep doing the fun stuff. I don’t feel “safe” making these wacky creations, but it is a reflection of what art is to me these days. It is an outlet where I can thank God for the blessings I have. To share that perspective of joy that I take in Eden’s doodles and elaborate on them visually. It has a glorious freedom in it.
There is so much more I want to share. Especially after watching the documentary “Who does She think She is?” Wow, a lot more in that than I thought. Can’t wait to show that film and get a hearty discussion going.

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