This past week, I watched a live session from Effy on the full moon in Leo as she worked on an art piece. My art journey started back in April or May of last year. It’s very easy for me to be critical of the work I’m doing and compare myself to people like Effy, Tamara and Toni or the countless of other people who are following their tutorials. Effy touched on this when she made a comment about looking at the work we create and harnessing that little child inside who is excited about showing her art to her mommy. That is, let go and just enjoy the process.
I’m working on that – the whole letting go thing is kind of hard for this one who has lived a lifetime of expectations that I’ve placed on myself as well as the expectations of others. It’s the inner critic of not being good enough, so I push myself to be the best. I think I’m discovering there is no best in art. Does it bring me joy in just playing with water spread across the paper as I then splash drops of color to see how it spreads? Or how the softness of pastel feels in my hand as I play with it on paper, mixing the layers to create subtly soft landscapes?
You would not know by looking at the picture above the process it went through to get to what you see now. It started out with me thoroughly wetting the paper and dropping yellow, orange, blue and green water color on top. I then lightly painted yellow oxide fluid acrylic on the top, which allowed for some of the watercolor to still peek through. I added some dark blue fluid acrylic, but I wanted nice drip lines, but couldn’t figure out how to make it work, ended up covering up most of the page in blue. I was ready to tear out the page in my art journal. I had a picture in my mind of what I wanted to create and it wasn’t coming together.
I sat the book aside for the evening and told myself that something would come through for me.
The next day, I sat with the book open and just said to myself, “Play.” I would try something and if it didn’t work out exactly as I planned in my head, I changed course. For instance, I had a vision of hands, palms up to the sky. My original intent was to draw the hands on some collage paper, cut it out and paste it onto my page. When that didn’t work, I simply took the image I had found online and pasted it onto the page. All the rest of elements just came out organically. I can best describe it as being in this flow. I gave myself permission to play and not be worried if it was good enough.
I offer to each of us that it’s okay to play and not be too worried about being good enough.