“How can you possibly part with this one?” she asks.
“Some are harder than others,” I reply, hand on my heart. “And this one hurts.”
When I first started painting, I would get very attached to certain pieces. I’d hang them in my home and ponder them deeply. I’d stare at them, study them, try to remember each brush stroke and layer, and why I decided to leave ‘that’ there. Completely afraid that I wouldn’t be able to manifest something as wonderful ever again, I’d find myself trying to replicate the circumstances that yielded each most recent piece. I tried to remember what music I was listening to when I created it; which brushes I used; whether I was wearing my comfy pants. I’d compare each new work to the last one and critique it accordingly. I was no longer in the moment; joyful, in flow, creating, soaring, inventing, reveling in happenstance, making glorious mistakes. Instead, I was essentially stuck.
I realized that I needed to LET GO. I needed to embrace the possibility that my best work is always yet to come. And, in order to continue to LOVE what I do, I must experiment and grow. I now paint for the sake of my creative mojo, my soul, my practice. By letting go of overthinking about the past, I am free to evolve… no strings attached.
Last season, I began working on a new body of work. Although the pieces carry my recognizable textured style, they are quite different from anything else I’ve done before. They are contemporary, tone-on-tone and minimalist. Taking a leap in a new direction, no matter what your vocation or lifestyle, can be terrifying; but I needed to do it. In fact, I ached for it. The process of creating them was exhilarating, totally nerve-wracking and absolutely soul stirring. The final pieces hit the spot and I fell deeply in love with a few them… sigh.
I’m honoured to say that my new work has been met with tremendous response and support. The 5ftx5ft blue piece (above) is entitled ‘Inside You’ll Find a Sigh’… a little nod to one of my heroes, Joni Mitchell, and a recognition of my heartfelt farewell as it makes its way to a new home.
Now, let’s see what’s next.