The journey of a thousand paintings begins with a single painting. And a single painting is a journey of a thousand brushstrokes.
So often we get ahead of ourselves. We focus on the outcome- the end result. When we do that we can miss out on so much right in front of us at the moment. It’s hard to focus on every single brushstroke one at a time when our mind is also trying to focus on securing a successful painting.
We’d have a much better chance of success if we gave every brushstroke our focus and presence. But success isn’t more important than the experience in my book.
There are two ways to get to a similar outcome. We can fight, struggle, and resist the whole way to a finished painting. Or we can be open, carefree, and non-judgmental about the problems we have to solve along the way to a finished painting. In both cases, we have very little control over the outcome. The outcome will be what it will be that day given our skillset and chance.
But why so often do we choose the path of most resistance? When the other way leads to so much more self-acceptance, clarity, and flow. We all have free will- a choice to make. Either we’ll make this path more difficult or we’ll make it lighter to bear. Learning to paint is a challenging skill to earn regardless of any raw talent you started with.
I know it’s easy for me to say now 13 years later and 1,400+ paintings later. Trust me when I say a large portion of those paintings I was hard on myself. I beat myself up too much. It never made it easier. It only made it harder. Every time I tapped into the present moment and focused on my love of making a single oily beautiful lively brushstroke I entered a state of bliss. The outcome didn’t seem to matter in those moments. Feeling the paint under the bristles, admiring the glowing color, and enjoying the sensation of pushing the paint around is pure bliss.
I’m so grateful to have this journey of painting and creativity. It teaches me so much every day. It teaches me how to love myself, how to let go of control, how to go with the flow and accept, and most importantly how to do it even if I don’t know HOW.
The how reveals itself along the way. The how is the least exciting part. How is the illusion of control that we never really have. The attachment to that control is what robs our art of it’s magic.
These two new paintings are fresh off my easel and each one was a magical journey.
One came with more challenges than the other. One required me to destroy things and let go in search of the magic. The other came with effortless ease as one magical brushstroke led to the next telling me what to do without me asking. Like following a little sunlit trail in the forest.
My paintings are more about the experience I get to have while painting them and observing the beauty of creativity.
Which do you think was done with more ease and flow? Let me know in the comments below.
P.S. These two new magical paintings will be available in my End of Summer Sale starting THIS Friday!
Also if you haven’t signed up for a chance to win a FREE painting of mine in my Labor Day Giveaway, enter here: http://eepurl.com/dpg-_9