Morning Pages Turned Into Paintings

Morning pages turned into paintings from this week with Walking in This World by Julia Cameron

As you may know I have been running/hosting a creative recovery circle with two of (who are becoming) my (dear) friends. We have been meeting up since the start of the year and following The Artist’s Way first and now the lockdowns and weather permitting a bit more, Walking in This World books.

It has been gentle, harrowing and mindblowing all at the same time, so it seems, thanks to the basic tools devised by Julia Cameron…the morning pages, the artist’s date and the weekly walk more recently.

This week, week four is all about adventure…and I had allowed myself a small creative adventure in turning my morning pages into paintings as soon as I write them. We have been talking about acting on our creative urges and intuitions, and this has been one of them…I log the pages on a large piece of paper….and see what emerges from them. It might be doing it “all wrong” as one is supposed to read those pages along the way a bit later, again, I presume…but this felt right, like something I had needed: the morning mind process transformed into painting…to transform it. They are not supposed to be art, just art as therapy/process of sorts….I log myself and look at it.

So I log the pages and then I paint through them, on them and out of them. This week has seen me go from a coffee cup, through a rugged purple and green self portrait to a waking dream about listening to my own soul.

Not sure what I am going to do when the time comes to read the logged pages…but hey ho…this is working for now. I believe enough will be left and readily readable, the important bits…and images.

What is your experience with morning pages or other journaling tools for discovery, reflection and deeper work? Let me know…I’d like to know.

For more arting, follow me on instagram @arting.me

#seemetoseeyourself online while in lockdown

See me to see yourself end of March

Quick note from the studio again, so blessed and honoured to be creating more for the #seemetoseeyourself ongoing project portraits.

See, I draw and paint women in #recovery, helping them see themselves for who they truly are…on the road, journeying, full of potential, full of light despite what they had been through or had put themselves through in the past.

The process is quite simple, yet intuitive:

I sit with the sitter, I hold the space…

Whatever comes up comes up

We meet. Each other. Each oneself.

I hold the space.

The sitter shows up, as in puts down the protective masks and shows up in their heart self.

I take up my pencils and paints and capture that.

I hold the space.

The sitter is witnessed for who they truly are. I bear witness to that.

They connect to it, themselves, the resulting piece a reminder of that meeting.

Simple. Not always that easy perhaps, for we are making it difficult for ourselves most of the time.

But finding that recently sitters have been more open with themselves, opening their hearts more readily…perhaps because I have done so too? Mirror mirror on the wall…

Funnily enough, it works online too…despite the distance and technical disembodiment of the experience.

If you feel like it, being part of the ongoing project, let me know #seemetoseeyourself.

At the moment, especially with what is going on with corona, I would like to serve as many women in recovery as possible, so the sitting is on a donation basis, covering the materials and p&p. Get in touch.

 

 

From the studio…notes on creativity gone…out and about and back and forth and bigger better slower more

The withdrawal process is seemingly unpredictable and requires a good measure of “go with the flow”, do what you need to do RIGHT NOW, stay in the MOMENT.

I have been infamously rubbish at it. Learning. Bear with me.

I have been running away from the now, the feelings, the e-motions and physical sensations, allowing my mind either to roam the vast range of regrets in the past or indulge in the promises of the future.

Bugger that. HEEEERE and NOW, my body, mind and spirit require me, to be. Right here, right now, keeping calm, keeping on keeping on….and CHILLing.

Art, i.e. in my case what I call arting has been really helpful. It really is art, I am just still too selfconscious to call it Art with capital A, let alone myself an artist, after thirteen years and counting…when is it gonna finish??? or click?!…, AND/BUT more importantly I really enjoy the processuality of that word ARTING. Bit like playing, messing about, goofing with…whatever.

Anyway…my art…arting has proved a saving grace once again. Above a couple of snapshots from the studio as it is at the moment.

#seemetoseeyourself portraits #couloringbooksforbiggirlswhodontcry, mess on my picture board (how did Nicole Kidman and reinterpretation of Origine du Monde with a butterfly get on there???) and my nest, with the aforementioned affirmative chilling cushion.

What I am trying to say…when I chill, like proper…stop harassing myself for being in recovery, in withdrawal, not in a (proper) job (DOH!!!), being a fake and all the associated nonsense my negative mind churns up on a second to second basis…I can actually just enjoy the peace that is within. AND THAT…is SOMEHING ELSE…then I can create from a place of joy, as in “radost” in Czech, and as we know there is never enough joy…not enough joy in enjoy and “radosti neni snad nikdy dosti”. Only there is more and more…when I allow myself to notice it.

So…I wish you a merry rest of the holiday season, and check out #premrawat if you get a minute. It is SOOO worth it. I just keep forgetting…and need to be reminded…all the time. Honest.

Drawn to do more #seemetoseeyourself portrait sessions

/Self/ portraits have been an important part of my recovery process…monitoring, connecting and keeping in touch with myself…while staring into the mirror with a brush, felt tip or a pencil in my hand.

 

More recently I have been creating #seemetoseeyourself portraits for other women in transition or recovery too. Been drawn to them…and vice versa…pun intended.

The portrait sessions are a space to be seen and witnessed, to honour the healing process and our place in it. The resulting acrylic and mixed media artworks a witness to and a celebration of a turning point, or a particular stretch of the journey.

Feeling allowed….even…especially…onto the canvas. And the space in between.

If you feel drawn to this, or know of someone who might be,  or who is in need of this, please pass this post on and let them know I am ready to arrange a sitting, either online or in my SE London studio.

Please do share and spread the word…for more women aware of and proud of their /captured/ moments of healing.

 

What happens when…Tracing myself, my innertapes and my process…

What happens when you start to listen to the inner tape and hear what it says for real?

It might take you to a new place in your arting.

I have been doing that over the past few days and a completely new way of painting has emerged for me.

This is the process in visuals.

It started off with me doing one of my #cycleselfies I had been doing in August-September. But this time I had included what the negative voices in my head had been telling me. Pretty shitty, I tell you. I then thought…right what would it take for me not to feel like a copy? And I followed the impulse to step into the canvas and paint with my own body. Hence the first piece #reachingouttomyself. I was fascinated to see the traces of my body and went onto experiment with them. And the other pieces ensued. #making lovetothecanvas, #headless, #butterfliesinmylap and #bigbaby. Not to mention how enlivened I feel creating these, despite their darkness.

How do they make you feel? What do you think about them? What is your reaction to it?

 

 

 

How to save your Arting Life: Do you do (enough) Reflection and Envisioning?

I have this process, two actually, that have helped me…to stay on track, yet be flexible enough and see the opportunities coming up.photo-on-09-02-2017-at-13-39

I call them Reflection and Envisioning. I do them at the weekend. Every weekend.

On Saturday night…I have a look at the past week:

  • How did I feel? How was it?
  • What have I accomplished?
  • How can I follow up on that? When.
  • What did I not accomplish that I wanted to?
  • What happened? Is it still relevant?
  • Self-coaching the how to the why not. (what would I tell a good friend if she came back to me withe same reason/excuse/story)

Then I leave it to simmer over night, sometimes I do sankalpa about the self-coaching when I am stuck for rational answers.

On Sunday I follow up with these three for the following week:

  • TOP 3 and
  • TOP 1 action steps for the next week plus when.
  • Wanna B….wanna feel…setting the intention for being.

 

I also have a daily process…but more about it say…tomorrow?

How does that sound to you. How do you keep track? I am a writing animal, so it works for me, but sometimes it is fun, just to do it mentally and keep record. Whoa, that is powerful.  Try it and tell me.