Have you ever experienced a False Start?
Maybe you know the kind...where you have an idea of something you want to accomplish. It sounds really good. But then when you actually start working on it, it's not at all what you envisioned.
It can be really upsetting when this happens, and you wonder where you went wrong. You feel a bit thrown, perhaps off your center a bit, disappointed. You might even let out an Argh or Dang It as I sometimes like to say when I'm frustrated. ;)
See the palette below? This is one I use for my watercolor painting. Actually, I have two, just in case I decide to do more than one painting at a time (which I haven't done as of yet, just with my art journal).
Do you notice the residue from the Winsor Blue paint in the upper right corner and in one of the small round areas? Yep, that's where I had my paint placed for a new painting I was about to start.
But it's not there anymore, is it? Not. Nope. I took it out within 5 to 10 minutes after I put it in. The consistency of the paint was not to my liking (straight of the tube with water), like my other colors were from my previous painting that I just completed. So I decided to just remove it. Just like that. (And I cleaned it out a bit better so now there's just a blue stain, not paint.)
I put it on my blotter paper so that I could at least use it in collage at a later time; no waste then.
But you know what was really interesting?
The Winsor Blue wasn't the only color I had laid out. I also had Winsor Orange and Yellow Ochre, which I had used in my previous painting. But the colors didn't mix well (it's true that when you mix complementary colors, it looks like mud). Nothing mixed well. It just looked uninspiring, to say the least.
But as I was removing the Winsor Blue, I had a glimpse of the Winsor Orange and Yellow Ochre, and thought, maybe I could work with those two colors and work with a couple of others besides and see how it goes.
In other words, as I was removing myself from this creative False Start, I had another idea for the Start that I actually decided to run with. It's often when we are exiting from something that disappoints, and might even tick us off that we can reveal our truer path of creativity.
That might just actually work out!
I did start a new painting, using the Yellow Ochre as a start. So far, so good.
Have you had a False Start recently? Did you find another truer path in the withdrawal process?
If so, I'd love to hear about it!
In the meanwhile, I'm happily applying my paint, with ideas in my mind of where I want it to go.
And you know what? I'm okay with whatever happens.
I'm listening and painting step by step; I'm honoring Who I Am as an Artist as I do.
When you take the time daily to Honor Who You Are in whatever Life Dimension calls out to you, you are nurturing the core of your being and saying YES.
You Deserve That.
Copyright 2014 by Dawn Herring
I love finding sources of artistic inspiration wherever I happen to be. I can never know what will inspire me, whether it's a design on a pillow or texture in the woods...
I recently went on an adventure in a local park with my hubby. It was spontaneous really, but I also felt it would be the perfect fulfillment of an adventure assignment I wanted to take on with Jani Franck's ecourse, Unearth Your Creative Nature, which was to go on an adventure and see how it changes you.
So, my time in the woods with hubby became just that; I had a wonderful time, with camera in hand, ready to capture anything I was drawn to.
One of the first things I noticed was the TEXTURES of the woods. I absolutely LOVE texture, whether I'm creating it on the page in my art journal, or creating textured detail with my paintbrush using my beloved watercolor.
So when I saw all this delightful texture all around me, I was determined to capture it in image and hope to use it in my artwork, whether overtly or subtly.
I love the spindly look of these first two images, with the thin, pointy type of foliage on the branches of trees and bushes. I love the contrast also of this with the mottled, shadowy background to the right.
I also thought the spindly look of these branches created an interesting contrast against the green-leaved back drop as well as the shadows cast on the ground.
The contrasts of textures and backdrops fascinated me; it showed me the diversity of nature, which makes for a very creative-inspired landscape.
It taught me that it's how we stand out that makes us unique.
The image below right I think is one of my favorites; what an interesting texture and color with was look like swirls of bark on this tree; it reminds me of the swirls on a layered blouse of sorts. It was even more inspiring in person!
I think I especially appreciate the contrast of this bark against the browns and greens of the foliage and branches surrounding it that really caused this tree to stand out to me.
The tree bark in the next photo below left is even a contrast to the one at right; it's a bit more typical of what I see on a tree trunk and yet I was still drawn to its textures and the green and gray sources growing on its surface.
We can be happy with exactly how we look, even if it's not typical to others in our environment.
After I took these photos of tree trunks in all their delightful textures, contrasts and contexts, I saw a left over stump from a tree close to my feet. I had to really squat down close up to get this shot. I liked the randomness of the twigs surrounding it and the naturalness of what was past versus what is present and potential for change.
Even when we see a situation that looks like nothing good can come from it, just a stump of what's left over from a painful experience, if we're patient, honest with ourselves and stay aligned with Who We Are, we are bound to find truth and beauty in ways and places unexpected. We just have to be open to look for them.
Then we'll see the sun, glorious upon our surroundings and in our hearts, bringing hope and healing to the broken places. Restoration to what was lost.
Let your heart sing now and it will come to pass.
Copyright 2014 by Dawn Herring
Your body has a voice.
When we listen to what it says, we will be blessed, enlightened and confident. We will know what to do in any given situation when we tune out to tune in.
Our bodies contain messages for us to follow. We just need to take time to implement what it says.
When we nurture our bodies, appreciate ourselves, and pay attention to our emotions, we will become more aware, more intuitive, more passionate and compassionate.
And what we learn we can share with others.
Copyright 2014 by Dawn Herring
Refreshment is a key component to my daily life. I know the deepest benefits and that's why I always remind folks to refresh themselves daily.
However, it's easy to let a day or two or many more slip by without re-invigorating ourselves in some way; but unfortunately we may experience the "side effects" of not doing so and, maybe, not even realize it.
Such was the case for me recently...
I was having a challenging morning, feeling a bit discouraged, a bit out of alignment and un-grounded. You know how I could tell?
I was feeling doubtful about some things. I was impatient, lacking faith in areas of great importance to me.
(Yes, this is an honest confession.)
I was really wondering what was going on with me; I don't like feeling or acting this way. It's very disconcerting, perplexing and distressing.
So I certainly did NOT want to stay there.
So I got my journal out and wrote my a.m. entry. After detailing my distress of those minutes I just described, I then switched to my non dominant hand and began to ask what went wrong.
What I wrote came as a complete but revelatory surprise to me.
I had not painted in about three days.
That was it.
You wouldn't think that putting pigment on a paint brush and applying it to watercolor paper or canvas would make that much of a difference, right?
But, here's the truth in a nutshell: I am an artist. It's a huge part of the core of my being. (I continued to journal just this truth when what was next came out in all of its profoundness...)
When I go one day without creating in some way, especially painting, which helps meactivate my creative center and stay aligned with Who I Am, I am essentially Rejecting that Core Part of Myself.
This really woke me up.
It's easy to point a finger at another and say, this person has rejected me, and put the blame elsewhere.
But in reality, rejection from another is often a reflection of how we are rejecting ourselves and not even know it!
I realized with this revelation of self rejection when not taking the time DAILY to honor Who I Am as an artist, I also came to the conclusion that Daily Authentic Refreshment is even more Vitally Important than I initially realized, for as much as I remind folks to refresh daily.
I understood on an even deeper level what it looks like and feels like to not refresh yourself to nourish the core of your being.
Instead of simply saying to get your guilt free refreshment daily, now I'm saying, Don't reject that Core of Who You Are by letting a day go by without that essential nourishment that is so vitally important to your well being. That cannot be overstated.
I realize that now more than ever before.
So, guess what?
I have painted daily since then, whether in my art journal or on canvas/paper. I finished one painting and started another.
Yes, when I paint daily, not only do I nourish myself, I also get more artistic work accomplished, and have a splendid time doing it.
And it does make a major difference in how I feel: more aligned with Who I Am. I can hear that Intuitive Voice speaking ever so clearly: Go Paint. And I say, Okay, I will!
My painting gives me space to express what's in my heart; it gives me deeper understanding of what I'm feeling, thinking, saying and doing.
And you know what else I realized?
My journaling practice is a super powerful tool that gives me space to express how I feel and listen to my Intuitive Heart; but it's NOT ENOUGH to keep me nourished in the Core of my being.
Once you find what nourishes the Core of your being, do it daily. Whatever it takes. Even if it's just 5 minutes!
And if you don't know what that nourishing activity is just yet, you're welcome to check out my Your Life Refreshed! Creative Strategy Sessions so we can get on board with helping you find out just what that is!
No Rejection. Just Love, Care and Nourishment...ultimately so you can make a positive mark in your world.
© 2014 by Dawn Herring
Dawn engages in many roles: As Writer/Blogger and Artist/Creative and Founder of Refresh with Dawn Herring: Where Art and JOY Align, She enjoys sharing from her vast experience as award-winning, life-long artist and leader in the field of written journaling, offering encouragement and proven tips to other journal keepers. Dawn's focus is on written journal keeping, artistic expression and finding your Creative Voice, and positive change that leads personal empowerment, encouraging you to leave your authentic and positive mark in the world. Dawn is a Commercial artist, hand letterer/illustrator and writer/blogger and enjoys sharing insights, humor, and encouragement as she shares from her life experiences as a woman, wife, mother of two grown daughters and as a Grandparent to a special needs grandson. She enjoys keeping a journal and reading spiritual texts to help keep the light on. May JOY Align with Your Creative Heart.