Tag Archives: magic

Resistance–we all feel it

Resistance is more than the brave people who worked during WWII to defeat the Nazis.  I’m talking about resistance, the Nazi within.  We all have it, and I think creative people have many close encounters with the beast, probably once a day or so.

As an artist, I walk into the studio every day with the hope of being productive and inspired.  Many times I walk in there with the need of coffee or some other stimulant to keep myself alert.

Truth is, energy is available in vast abundance.

Resistance shows up in many ways:

Don’t try these new paints, they won’t work well.

Don’t repaint that old picture.

Cleaning your fridge would be a more effective use of time…

The studio is too dirty to work in, clean it!

Painting is an iffy proposition–at all times.

Don’t waste the paint on that old painting.

You;re too tired to paint…

It goes on and on. Why is it that so many excuses pop up when we’re about to do something that we actually enjoy.  It’s like starting over every day.

Maybe creativity is that way.  What will show up on the canvas is uncertain, so why even try?  Every new day is a challenge.

Should I use my time better, do something that needs to be done (chore) or do I stick with the plan?

Since I made the agreement to stick with my art years ago, it has become simple to stay in the studio, but Resistance will show up in sneaky ways, holding hand with its cousin Excuses.

It’s never easy.

But what worthy endeavor is?

It’s also hard to be self motivated. We learn early on to follow orders, never questioning their importance.

Taking charge of your life and actually DOING something you love on a greater scale can be scary.

Flying without a safety net.

For many, that is a nightmare.

It is the trickster within that builds things out of proportion and say you can’t have a life that is outside the norm.

Let’s say the trickster is the ultimate expert, the father of resistance and excuses.

When you recognize these guys, just laugh.

You have enough confidence in yourself to know you’re being tricked.

A solid commitment to the art, or craft, is a must. If we haven’t made the DECISION to make art no matter what, we don’t have a strong foundation.

A strong commitment and habits to produce will strong-arm those negative voices aside.  It’s really important to nurture the commitment. With time it becomes very strong.

Every painting is a risk of failure, but what isn’t?

It’s worth a try.  When inspiration seems to be absent, spread some paint on a canvas anyway. It could become a good foundation for a masterpiece.

Practice allows the door to open up and magic step in.

It’s a special joy to see the process through, and the rewards can be great. You never know on any given day.

Another post that might inspire you when the negative voices are loud: My inner critic on rampage.

Another post: Who is in charge?

I’m working on this goddess painting. It will need some tweaking, but it was a great process of seeing her emerge from the chaotic background.

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I don’t know what will appear today on the next canvas. Time to find out!

Have a great creative weekend!

xo

Maria

P.S.  I have lots of goodies in my etsy shop, Earth and Faery. Check it out. 🙂

 

Receiving is a good thing

Receiving is a good thing though they say giving is more important.  Receiving is not what we think it is as in birthday presents and people doing you a favor. Those are all part of it, but to me, receiving is a state.

A state is a condition that we experience, FEEL. Most of us don’t have a clue about how to receive. Guilt plays a big role. We have to live by the convention of “I scratch your back so you scratch mine.”

It is an exchange of energy between people and I don’t disregard that, but receiving is so much more. It’s a state of “grace”, of being fulfilled, of gratitude for life as a whole, not just the perks we get.

When you’re in a state of receiving you are not chasing anything, no gains, no positions, no desires, no wants. You are open to receive whatever comes, but if you are filled with gratitude for life, mostly good things come to you.

It’s not easy to gain that state of receiving in a consistent manner, but by examining life and all those beliefs and habits that hold us back, we can learn to accept it ALL, and from there gain appreciation about the mystery of life.

We basically don’t know any more than newborn babies. They know more that we do in a greater sense. They are still pure and innocent, as we once were. They are in a state of receiving.

As are pets if you think about it. They lie around all day and don’t worry where their next meal is coming from. It never enters their mind, and they are always provided for.

In a sense they take for granted that life will support them. And it does.

Meanwhile, humans run around, or rush down the closest highway to get to nowhere.  We worry and curse and plan.  We are always chasing money. The whole day is revolving around making money.

We lost that innocent trust a long time ago, traded it for a man-made world that offers a lot of pain and suffering.

When we claim life and stop struggling, something shifts. Life becomes more beautiful and filled with situations we can be grateful for. The more accepting and grateful, the more abundant the gifts from the universe.

It’s not easy to change, but by becoming aware of what we do, and why, and what we say, and our prejudices, we can slowly shift the energy to be more supporting and loving of ourselves. The more you love yourself, the more the universe will support you!

What does this have to do with art, you ask? Really everything.

We tend to criticize and judge our art efforts harshly.

We compare ourselves to others.

We have an idea of what the art should look like, and it never does, so back condemning the effort. It can be a vicious cycle. Many stop making art because of it.

What if the art you make turns out ugly (in your opinion.) What then?  Do you continue or just drop the whole adventure?

If we don’t stick with it, we miss out of the mystery.  The adventure becomes a hurried rush down the highway, like with so many things we do.

We are addicted to doing and seeing results.

When you can shift and be in a receiving mode as you begin your art session, you are in a non-judgmental state and can receive the art as it manifests through you. That is such a gift!

It might not look like much, but your energy is in it. The receiving as a state of grace shows up in your art. Even if you only painted a blue line across the canvas, people will feel something.

We might admire technique but it’s the energy that draws us.

Stop chasing, become a receiver of life. Make open stillness be part of your daily process.

I did some art journaling lately.  I can’t say I reached that magical state of wonder, but I had fun.

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Be who you want to be.

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A cat person…

receiving

Doodles


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Strange lady… Summer solstice

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More doodles…

I guess I was into yellow and blue this week.

To be open to receive is to allow, to accept, and live in gratitude for what is, and what appears on the page.

Follow me in Instagram. I post most photos there, @greeneearth

I have some ideas if you’re looking for a gift. My etsy shop has lots of cool gifts. Earth and Faery.

You can read some of my older blog posts for more inspiration: Why do you do what you do?

My inner critic on a rampage

Have a great and safe July 4!

xo

Maria

 

Magic making in the park

Magic making in the park requires a sense of openness.

I went to a nearby park by a big lake with a friend yesterday.  We had decided to paint by the water. I brought my art journal and a box of Neocolors2 and some water.

My friend Sheri brought a large canvas and loads of paint. We spread out our materials on the tables in the shelter. The weather was perfect; the humid heat had broken for once. A gentle breeze flowed over the water.  I wish I had taken some pictures.

The area around the shelter holds many old live oaks. There is an energy of magic all around and many birthday parties and wedding receptions have been held at that shelter.

Every time I go to the park I slow down, breathe, and feel the energy. I connect with the trees and feel into their energy to see if there is a message or an inspiration there. I ask if it’s okay to connect. Approaching nature in a humble way opens the door to communication.

Without the magic, there would be only Sheri and I making art, maybe copying a tree or drawing something realistic.

What I’m getting at is that magic happens in the moment. Either you allow it to sweep you along or you look at the surroundings with “tired” eyes.

I have lived “tired” for a long time and now all I want is the sense of magic, of connection with nature.

I doodled in my art journal feeling into the energy of my favorite tree. There were some colors, kind of like an aura. Mostly I got a clear blue. I don’t think the rendition was wholly true, but I have free will. 🙂

I have no idea where the giraffe came from…

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Being aware of the subtle energies doesn’t mean I can depict them on paper, but I do my best.

Sheri started pouring paint all over her canvas and I watched in fascination. She only works on big canvases. I like a variety of sizes.

She spreads the paint with her hands in an intuitive process, which comes naturally to her. When done with that process, she looks to see what might appear in the paint.

We saw a turtle and a face, and I love how all the colors blended perfectly without particular care. When the paint dries, she enhances the images that pop up.

I own one of her large paintings and I never grow tired of it because the energy is timeless. Still, to this day I see new creatures in the painting.  I love the riot of colors.

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art by Sheri Salin

The most magic part of her art is that people find her art mysteriously–locally. People just show up and want to buy a painting. She doesn’t even actively sell them locally although she has in the past.

Her intuitive painting process is lovely and I admire her fearless approach to art.

You can find some more pictures on her page at Saatchi art. CLICK HERE.

It takes guts and openness to create in the moment as it takes openness to connect with the essence of nature.  It is in that space that magic truly happens.

You can choose every day to feel the magic. I meditate to slow down and then I look at the living being that is our earth. Every blade of grass, every tiny bug is alive with magic.

Either we choose magic or choose fear. Fear is the conditioning we carry with us from our upbringing and the pressures of society.

All you need is to find a way to SLOW DOWN and truly look and feel into the natural surroundings or the paint if you’re creating something.

Feel into it and trust what comes out of the moment. To approach nature it’s good  ask for permission to communicate.  Nature wants to communicate with humans to make the world a better place.

Magic is real, folks. It swirls within us and everywhere outside. Open up to it and you won’t look at your surroundings with “tired” eyes ever again!

Here is an older blog post I wrote about magic:

Magic is afoot!

Have a great weekend!

xo

Maria

 

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?

 

The moment of NOW.

now

Hello friends,

We plan and we struggle. We look toward the future and the possibilities that might unfold for us. We like to watch the horizon and imagine new things. Nothing wrong with that, but the fact is, the only time is NOW.

You can’t imagine now. It can only be experienced, and it can be boring, right?  We are addicted to excitement, shiny new things. Meanwhile life happens, increment by increment, and who says there will be more than just ONE moment?

There is a moment when you take your first breath,  or more correctly, the breath is given to you, and there is a moment when it leaves the body.  All that awesomeness happens in one moment, no beginning, no end. It just “is.”

I’m hearing this quite often now: “Do what you want or what you feel like doing. That can change from moment to moment. Isn’t that how small children live?  They do something wholeheartedly for one moment, and then move on to the next thing without a thought of what went before.  The world stands still because they are present in every moment.  Awareness

What does that have to do with a successful art business or any other business? I have learned that no matter how much I plan or try new things, they never end up as planned, or new inspiration comes in, or doesn’t, that moves the path forward in a new direction.

So, I feel the new dynamic is to enjoy life, to forget the sweat and the struggle to get SOMEWHERE.  Find the joy in the moment and be moved by that joy. The mind thinks it’s a boring endeavor, and it doesn’t want to stop and breathe and listen.  It likes to charge ahead and accomplish things, do the lists, execute the PLAN, and reap the lucrative results.

All we get is exhaustion and disappointment, even if things got accomplished. I pretty much spent my life there…

Success is to be able to slow down to the “still point” of existence and really be present in life. From there we can move in the direction of what truly fires us up, and if there is nothing exciting, to listen even closer for the deeper movement that might point toward a whole new path.

There is nothing to prove, no goal to run after and accomplish. Success in the Western society is based on physical and mental accomplishment. If we don’t fall in with that template we are losers or less than those who succeed in wealth and careers.

What about those who are physically and mentally challenged? I have noticed at lot of blissful smiles and stories of inspiration of a greater life among such people.  Not always of course, but we have a choice.

I have stood in front of that choice many times in my life. Right now I have come full circle again, back to point zero. I spent the last year accomplishing GREAT things (in my opinion.) I learned a lot of new skills, which I enjoy.  However, I didn’t get to where I wanted to be in my life, and some say, “try harder.”

BUT, I know that will not work.  I choose to delve more deeply into the moment. I choose the mystery of life over great accomplishments. That’s where the right path lies, and it’s infinitely more intriguing than the next mountain to climb.

There is nothing wrong with challenges. We grow through them, but hey, stop a moment, take a deep breath and realize where life truly IS.

It takes courage to follow the moment of Now, but it gets easier as we see the workings of that magic of life in our daily existence.

Are you excited about this new possibility, which is not new? It’s ancient, but we run faster and faster away from it…

I know I’m excited about it. The struggle stops here!

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