Creative Spirit Workshops

Nurturing your creative spirit within.


10 Feb

As an artist I am most attracted to light.  The endless ways that light plays on objects is forever fascinating to me.  In my collage work I am attracted to sunlit images and reflective subjects, even in assemblage work I am always seeking the reflective piece to improve the composition. Works by other artists that are bathed in light are the most appealing to me.  In my journey as an artist I continue to learn ways to bring in the light.

When I was teaching art at the high school level, I spent a lot of time teaching the elements of art, line, shape, value texture and color. These elements were the focus for one third of the year. It occurred to me that all of the elements are enhanced by techniques that suggest light.  Line becomes more interesting with the lost and found edges that light produces in observation.  Shapes that display the effects of light are more pleasing to the eye.  Textures can suggest the play of light. Color is impossible without light. And, of course, value is the study of light. Color and value can affect the mood of an art piece more than any of the other elements. I suppose that is why I remain so attached to the ideas encompassing both of these. There is so much to learn about light!  Certainly, enough to keep me busy for the rest of my life.

In my search for expression in my artwork, I have made contact with another type of light, the light of my own creative spirit.  The more I stay “in spirit” the more I realize that this spirit is contained in each and every person.  Wayne Dyer has shared in his writings that “to be in spirit, is to be inspired”. You have made contact with the “Source”, the creator of all truth and beauty in the world. This is the condition we all seek naturally.  Some of the “daily grind” in which we all participate is not conducive to being “in-spirit”. We all need to provide more spirit enhancing activities in our lives.  This is sometimes known in the corporate world as “stress reduction”.

Line is another fascination for me.  I have trouble completing a painting without it, often adding at the last moment.  Drawing, like handwriting speaks volumes about a person’s personality. The spirit within is different for each of us, as are the marks that we make to express what we see and feel.  Yet, line or drawing has a common language that we all can understand that requires no words. I guess that is why I have always loved to teach drawing.  It gives me a chance to see into a portion of the soul of the person doing the drawings.

As for subject matter, I am continually drawn to trees. I think they are probably my most dominant theme.  I don’t know the reason, of course, and I know I am not alone in my obsession, but the theme never disappears.  I also have a connection to animals and birds — more the birds in later years.  Perhaps one connection is the obvious analogy of nesting to home life, but also the freedom of flight and all that that implies. 

The last of my themes that constantly reoccurs is the idea of metamorphosis, the caterpillar surviving to make the cocoon and then the butterfly emerges to take flight and lay the eggs which then become the caterpillar only to repeat the process. 

We all have recurring themes,  different ones for each of us. I am convinced they are there for a special lesson that we must learn. Expressing these themes in art, via painting, drawing, sculpting, music, or writing or whatever one chooses, is a way to discover the knowledge that our soul is longing to find. We must create! And share these creations with others.  As Jan Phillips would say, add some “newness to the world”. 

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