Sunday, May 13, 2012

The Process of Being

Haven't been writing a whole lot on here lately. Been trying to just be and not think too much. 

As the season starts slowing down, I see how much has moved forward in the past year. I typically gage my year not on Jan 1, but summer. It's a time of reflection and of course, travel. Still trying to figure out where to go but in time I'm sure it'll show itself soon enough.

Last year around this time I was preparing for Peru. Looking for answers and a way to release myself from the fear that has had a grip on me for a while now. Ultimately I was looking to learn how to be the person I truly am and live life with an open heart.

The last few months I can really see how that wish has come true. 

My art has been fun and I'm finally showing it to people without having my stomach turn. In fact, I  actually enjoy showing it now which is a switch. 

I try not to worry too much about people's reactions which have been for the most part very kind and supportive. After finally bringing a couple pieces to a local store, I had a random encounter from a friend who runs a local gallery in town suggesting that I apply for membership.

That application includes submitting a few pieces along with an artist statement for a jury panel within two weeks of our conversation.

Now in the past, I would have made up every excuse why I wasn't ready for it but this time I had exactly three older pieces framed per their specs and was ready to go sans artist statement. 

I would have liked to have given newer art but with the time crunch, my old ones would suffice because I love them just as much. They actually were some of the first ones I hung a couple years ago which was quite a stomach turning feat back then. 

So after a great paddle board tour on Friday, I cleaned up and brought them into my friend. She had never seen my art before and I was amazed at how calm and easy it was to get through the whole thing this time around. 

She explained to me the process and if I didn't get in, the reasons why that might be. I told her I was just happy to be offered the opportunity to show which is the truth. It's part of the process right now for me. I know my work will find the proper home or homes. Just being comfortable today with putting it out there, I see how much has changed and am grateful. 

She knew one of my subjects very well. A mahogany seed I had picked up one day at the library. I watched as she looked at the painting and described how beautiful they were after it rained. That's exactly the kind of reaction I want from my art. 

Provoking some kind of personal memory or feeling that gives people a moment of calm, happiness. My artist statement came out in a blip and felt so right, I didn't have to rework it much. 

Andrea agreed it was perfect and really matched what I presented. After the last few years of writing about other peoples work, I think I found a groove in explaining my own. I have a feeling those artist marketing jobs are going to payoff big time in a way I never imagined.

Been enjoying myself with friends and one more than friend. Seeing how having happiness and fun with people can grow if you let it. Not being afraid to share my feelings and seeing the shifts that are happening now are ok. Keeping the thought as a guide that change is good and the only constant. 

Not trying to attach to an outcome manufactured in my head and just letting it all go to where it needs to be feels freeing. It takes practice though.

I did the paddleboard classic yesterday. A 12 mile paddle around the island that I swore I would never do again after last year's conditions. My goal last year was to finish it which I did.. 5 1/2 hours later. This year I had been sick with a cold the week before and I decided to join to be a part of the group for the fun of it. 

Conditions started out ok, but gradually worsened and by the time I made it 3/4 of the way, it just wasn't fun anymore. I could have killed myself to try to prove I could finish it but I already had the year before and was tired. So when a friend yelled out to me from a dock asking if I'd like a beer, I was sold. 

They all laughed cause I guess they tried to convince others to stop but they all continued on the death march. I had reached my limit and didn't feel the need to prove myself anymore. 

My stopping point was good enough for me and besides, I was really hungry. So I drank my beer and dropped off the board easily at the dock then got a barefoot ride with my good work friend. We subsequently got a bite to eat after, a few laughs and it was the perfect way to end my race.

Guess what I'm trying to say is I don't feel the need to prove who I am anymore and in that I'm finding more freedom to be who I really am. People seem to be responding to that too.

Laughter, love, and joy can follow when you just get down to the basics and be you. 

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