Tag Archives: art

Intuitive art or structured art?

Intuitive art or structured art is a dilemma I struggle with often. Intuitive art is direct and it happens and evolves in the moment. One step of paint leads to another and it goes on until finished.

Structured art is planned out in every detail.

More often than not I don’t like what comes out in the end of an intuitive art session, but in art journaling, it’s okay to let it all hang out and not worry about “pretty.”

Lion's gate
intuitive art

As you can see above, I didn’t have much of a plan. I knew I wanted to make something around the eclipse today so I started with a large yellow circle and wove the rest from there. Is it pretty? I’d say not, but it feels good to me.

Intuitive art is led by feeling rather than a thought-out plan. It can be scary, but many worthwhile things are.

abstract art journaling
intuitive art

Above is another example of intuitive art. It’s raw and direct.

art journaling
intuitive art

The above page is more structured since I put some thought into the combination of the background papers. As you will see in the following picture, the two have similar backgrounds and that was to tie the pages together.

art journaling
structured art

This page I planned out. I knew I wanted to make an angel, but I wasn’t sure how she would evolve. I chose papers that added interest to the background.

I’d say that page is inspired by all the other pages people are making and posting online and offering in how-to videos. It was fun to make, but not very original.

doodle mania
structured art

The face was planned and the doodles happened along the way. It was fun and it felt original, not like a copy.

One artist I admire is Tamara LaPorte of Willowing Art. Her art journaling is beautiful and very structured. I have to say it bores me to copy in the long run. I just don’t have the patience. Do you? I still admire her art, but it’s not my cup of tea as they say.

portrait
structured
face
structured art

portraitThe pages may be pretty but they don’t speak to me in the long run. They are satisfying to paint, but…  After leafing through a bunch of my art journals I have to say 90% of them are filled with intutive art.

Intuitive art can be very frustrating, but also offer a window into my life.

art journaling

So when all is said and done, follow your own star!

I have a lot of how-to videos on my YouTube channel if you’re interested in the intuitive art process. You can browse HERE.

I have a blog post about living in the Now and creating art. The Moment Of Now.

Check them out and have a great creative week!

xo

Maria

P.S. My etsy shop EARTH AND FAERY is filled to the brim with magical and colorful things. Gift ideas anyone?

Art is self-care

Art is self-care, no bones about it. I have heard an excuse for not making art that baffles me.

“I don’t start painting because it might consume my entire life.”

I realize we’re prone to binge watch shows we like or read a book cover to cover in one night, but at some point you have to abandon those things in the course of a day (or night.)

We have to eat, mind children, do chores. They might get set aside temporarily and dealt with later, but I can safely say no one will be consumed by art.

It’s nice sometimes to lose oneself in a creative effort, but when the stomach growls it’s time to re-fuel and take a break.

Are we afraid of losing ourselves into FLOW of anything that pulls us? Are we afraid of letting go and experience a deeper sense of connection with that which wants to be expressed? I’d say so.

It’s hard to let go, and fear tends to creep in, not to mention the ego stomping its foot at the idea of letting go.

Self-care involves letting things unfold and enjoying the journey. SELF wants to speak, and CARE is similar to trust, to allow something that might be bigger than our everyday personas.

Art never hurt anyone. If you care about self, it’s time to heed the longing that pushes from inside. Make some art! It’s not going to be the end of the world.

Care also means to care about your art work. When you set out to create, don’t minimize the effort or belittle the expression. It might come out ugly in your OPINION, but it’s about creativity, not about striving to paint like Van Gogh.

It’s time to put some care into the art work. Make it your best and feel the sense of accomplishment.

I was into art journaling this week and asked myself how I could put more care into my art instead of slapping down some paint. There is nothing wrong with process, but what if I took it a step further?

art as self-care

I really wanted to come up with some angle I hadn’t tried before. What would it be like? I have painted many faces, but never used paperback page hair, so I went into my stash of paper. I really like the effect.

I might leave as is or write something on the left. It’s okay to leave and come back at some later date if necessary.

art as self-care

For the above spread I had planned a video, but only captured the background and how I tied it together. I work intuitively, and the recognizable parts appear in the paper background (if any.)

I put a lot of care and thought into every aspect, yet I kept myself open to surprise. To me, that is the best way to inspire and delight myself. The bird above was never planned, and the buddha became the iris of an eye.

So much fun!

Care about yourself and your desires.

Allow them to express in your life.

Care about your art.

When ego stomps all over your art, keep going and ignore it as much as you can.

Allow yourself the care of immersing yourself in your art. If you can’t, well, give it ten minutes a day!

For more inspiration check out this blog post: Because Journaling is Fun.

Lots of inspiration to you.

Maria

P.S. I have some new items in my etsy shop if you’re looking for something colorful and fun. 🙂 Earth and Faery

 

 

Masks we wear

Masks we wear are many and varied. One person can wear many masks or personas.  We swear the masks are who we are.

I could call myself an artist, a writer, a reader, a nature lover, a spiritual being, a woman. Some roles are more prominent than others. I could go on with more, but I’m already tired of thinking about all the roles I uphold. 🙂

masks we wear

I did some art journaling around masks and it got me thinking about what is behind everything.

We believe our mind is the sole creator of who we are. We have compartmentalized all that we know, all our experiences and beliefs of who we are and who everyone else is.

masks we wear

So much crap is stored “up there,” but to be honest it all hangs out in our energy. The brain doesn’t store all the images and beliefs. The brain is a glutinous mass that sends out and receives signals. (Simplified version.)

Just to digress a little… a bird is a bird, not wearing any masks, a cat is basically a cat, though I have seen mine wearing masks. However, on a more basic level all animals are what they are; they live by instinct.

The wind blows in the trees, the leaves bend naturally to the wind. They don’t say or think that it’s uncool to bend. They don’t have to wear any designer masks to BE.

After my morning ritual I was lifting my arm to scratch my neck and thought, who is lifting my arm? Is it my brain sending out signals? Yes, but there is more too it.

The impulse that got my brain sending out signals to lift my arm to scratch the itch was automatic as is much action involving my body.  We don’t think about it, just do it.

We take everything for granted until it doesn’t work any more.

To cut to the chase, the life force moves the impulses and also creates my art. It makes the whole world go around, sometimes with terrible force like hurricanes.

We are NOT the roles we play.

Roles can only hinder the latent creativity that lies underneath it all.

It can be scary to remove masks. Vulnerability is something we protect at all cost.

However, creativity is vulnerability. If you don’t dare to show up as yourself and you express an artist persona or only copy art that is the latest “trend,” you miss out.

Sometimes I get stuck in limbo between stepping up and “taking action” (as in forcing something to happen,) versus allowing things to unfold at its own pace. It takes courage to stand vulnerable in front of your art. There can be a lot of creative angst yet the reward is great if you follow through and don’t give in to all the imagined monsters in the mind.

We have a great fear of being judged unfavorably. Seeking approval is one part of the mask we have built up. Truth to tell, who gives a sh*t what others think about your art??

We are the hardest judge. We compare the art to the accepted norm and find it falling short of expectation.

What a buzz killer that is.

You have a choice. Do you keep going or do you give up? Do you forgive yourself and allow the art to be just as it is?

We go through many stages as an artist. There are no shortcuts so we might as well enjoy the journey and revel in the moments that feel perfect as everything falls together without barely an effort.

Those moments become more numerous with time, but there is no guarantee.

Be the explorer of a new continent that does not have boundaries like land. Live in the moment and let the wind sing in your “leaves.” That is true art. 🙂

xo

Maria

P.S. If you want to explore art journaling but doesn’t know where to start, sign up for my artist email newsletter and get a free art journal primer. SIGN UP.

A bunch of Mondays

A bunch of Mondays was something I used to say when I had a bad week. Nowadays I love Mondays. I love every day in fact, but Monday is a day full of possibilities for the week. “The world is your oyster” as they say…. or “where there is a will there’s a way.

a bunch of MondaysSquirrels don’t care if it’s Monday or Saturday. They want to eat bird seed and they don’t give up easily when the opportunity is there. They are opportunists, as are most animals when it comes to food. They see the possibilities in life.

People are like caged animals, something we created for ourselves.

Why did we divide the days into weeks in the first place? Cavemen went by the rising and setting of the sun (I surmise.)

People hate Mondays because it heralds the beginning of ANOTHER week, also called the grind.

I used to think Saturday was my favorite day of the week. I could go out shopping and meet up with friends and loved ones. There was always some party or event at night. Those were a bunch of Saturdays…

It got boring fast. I bore easily, but the one thing that never bores me is my art. Art is new every day. Sometimes it’s a struggle, but I would never exchange it for the grind.

When we do more of what we love, the days get filled with possibilities. You get a more positive outlook on life in general. bunch of Mondays

Living life from the perspective of possibilities and joy gives existence a whole new meaning.

We can break out of the cage. First, you have to discover what you really love to do. What comes easily to you? What did you want to do as a kid or teenager?

Do more of it. Sometimes it takes courage to choose a new path, but you get more brave with every step. As you keep on walking you discover that it is the only way to live.

Even if you are part of “the grind” do things that fire you up in your free time. Build dreams, see possibilities.

The inventors of the past were admired because they saw possibilities and took dedicated steps towards realizing their vision.

You don’t have to be an Edison or a Tesla to have an extraordinary life (dream.)

All you have to do is to acknowledge that you have a dream and GO FOR IT!

Monday will become the best day of the week if you do. 🙂

xo

Maria

P.S. I have some new and exiting things in my etsy shop. CHECK ‘EM OUT.

 

The dog ate my motivation

The dog ate my motivation. Good excuse, right?

We get inventive when it comes to excuses to avoid that which we REALLY want to do if we weren’t so scared.

A lack of motivation usually stems from fear. Sometimes we realize that what we have been doing isn’t working so we lose motivation.

I have been sensing a shift lately. I don’t lack discipline (but strong discipline can sometimes work against me.) A feeling that things weren’t working out has bogged me down in the last week or so.

I felt cornered. I made this art journal spread to express my feelings.

art journaling

Then I realized that I have to go back to the moment, to let my intuition guide me. So often I “push through” which is not guided by my intuition, but by my force of will.

I’m stubborn and I want things to happen NOW, not later or on a universal timeline.  As frustration sets in I have to surrender, and then I find myself back on track, motivated to step forward again.

Our body is a great indicator whether we’re “pushing” or allowing. How does if feel? Like rolling a rock up a mountain?

Water flows easily around obstacles. Be like water.

Listen to that inner urge, the subtle force that propels us forward. The turtle wins the race…

If you don’t feel motivated what can you do? If you want to make art, set aside a no-excuse time to do it and stick with it! Everyone can find 15 minutes a day.

Put your art supplies out on a table or counter somewhere. They are a reminder of what you want to do.

Find creative ways around chores and children or involve the tots in art making with you. You might inspire a future artist.

Watch art how-to videos on YouTube. I have a channel with lots of INSPIRING VIDEOS.

To get on track we have to engage with the things that inspire fear. Art is easy as you can’t go wrong! Look at is as exploration.  I’m only addressing art here, but if you have a different dream, what is holding you back?

Cultivate discipline but don’t let it consume you and your inner sense of what is right. There is a balance to everything.

Trust the sensations in your body. They are never wrong.

When you feel inspired, act! Don’t put it off.

When you don’t feel inspired, listen within and trust that everything is okay.

Make a habit of creating some art every day. It bears repeating. Make friends with your art materials. Sometimes unknown materials can be scary. Remember, your art is never wrong. Accept the ugly with the beautiful and keep going.

Stop making excuses, period. Stand “naked” with the pain of frustration and indecision. Allow the stuckness until you feel that inner “go” again.

Make some bold moves.

Don’t blame the dog! 🙂

xo

Maria

P.S. I have some inspiring and affordable e-courses if you’re looking for tutorials. CLICK HERE. 

 

Stay with me said the painting

Stay with me, said the painting to the artist.

painting
stay with me

The artist replied, “No, I want you to reveal your magic NOW. I don’t have time to hang around waiting for you to get your sh*t together.”

“All in good time,” replied the painting with a smile. “Life is infinite.”

“Grrrr. I have other things to do. I can’t sit around and wait for the next step on this stupid painting.”

“With an attitude like that, nothing good will ever come to you because you’re too busy running away from the magic moments in your haste to go nowhere.”

“You’re withholding,” the artist said and rolled her eyes.

“What are your priorities? To run around being busy with trivialities or to contemplate what is really important in life? It’s not about a painting but about your approach to life. Even though you act like one, you’re not a hamster on a wheel.”

“Sometimes I feel like I am. It’s the hardest thing to wait for the true prompts, the ones that come from within,” said the artist.

“You’re hard-wired to make, to accomplish, to perform and get results as quickly as possible, but life doesn’t work like that. If you can see your painting as life, you are on the right track. Humble down a notch or two and open up to possibilities. Stop being a robot.”

“Patience is the hardest part. I get so frustrated, and especially if the painting turns into an ugly mess. Stops me right in the tracks.”

“The painting has its own journey and destinations. Not every painting is destined to be a masterpiece, just as you’re not destined to become a violinist.”

“I get so bored, waiting.”

“Stay with me,” begged the painting.

“It’s like the lottery. You have to wait to find out if you won or not.”

“I have a winning number if you can stick with the process and not leave just as the magic is about to happen,” the painting said.

“I want guarantees,” said the artist. “How do I know this ugly mess can turn into something beautiful.”

“Butterflies start out as hairy caterpillars that no one likes, but then… transformation!”

“Yeah, right.” The artist sighed and stared at the painting.  She bristled with frustration. “I feel antsy.”

“Do something else for a while. Go for a walk and then come back to me,” said the painting. “You are not a prisoner even if you think you are. You are a prisoner of expectations.”

“I like to accomplish things. It makes me feel good to not waste time.”

“What is important to you, dear?”

The artist thought about it for a while. “To experience the mystery. Everything else is old hat, endless repetition.”

“Stay with me then. I will transform you as I transform into real beauty,” said the painting.

The artist sighed and tried a few brush strokes, and right in front of her eyes, magic was revealed. All she had to do was to bring it out.

What a feeling!

(The painting at the top of the post is not finished, but it will be some day.) 🙂

P.S. Here’s a post about resistance you might like: Who is in Charge?