"Mountain", watercolor, 2012
I wonder if there is anything quite as rewarding as feeling oneself deeply aligned
with the work one does in the world. As the weeks roll gently and swiftly by, the
studio has become more and more a place of sanctuary and inspiration. Three
groups have now gathered here, the young women, my blessing circle, and last
weekend my Myth & Symbol class. I am now walking inside the dream of this space
held for so many years, and I am expanding into the possibilities of the work here.
There are weeks when I am not yet able to spend much time making art, but I know
this is the fallout from the continued work on promotional materials and web site
and all that goes in to setting up shop. With the end of school just a few weeks off,
I will have more time for painting. I catch a few hours here and there, enough to
keep the cauldron brewing and to feel the stirrings of what might be next. One
morning, stressed and in a dark mood, I entered the studio and felt myself instantly
lighten with the simple beauty of the space.
My pinboard is filling up with work, and even with only short moments to give to my
process, I am getting somewhere new with the distant views. I think growing up in
a home filled with Chinese and Japanese paintings is important for the work I am
doing now. I saw something in the way I painted the mountain in the top image in
this post that reminded me of those paintings. Its a particular way of seeing and
depicting volume and space with minimal detail. Its something to strive for again,
I've been more obsessed with tree lines and mists than the distant hills, but this
painting demands that I pay close attention to the mountains. (the color is really off
in that image, I need to take work outside to shoot, I'll be back with that
I continued with the book of spirals, inspired by the
bleedthroughs as much as the spirals.
The book is now full, but another one will probably start soon.
Outside, trees that gave themselves to make room for the studio
call to me to notice their rings and rays.
I know I've shared this before on this blog, but its worth repeating. Before I had
this camera, I didn't understand the flower paintins of Georgia O'Keefe the way I
do now. I've always loved her work, but I never SAW flowers the way she did -
until now. There is something wonderful in knowing a person's work for many
years and then one day understanding it on a much deeper level. She must have
had macro lenses in her eyes... really, she saw such fine detail, astounding.
Living here at RavenWood, I am just as much engaged in the contemporary world
as everyone else, though choices like heating with wood and living on the edge
of the wild keep my toes in a faraway world. But there is an unmistakable mystery
in the forest, and magic is everywhere, if one has eyes to see it. Maybe as O'Keefe
had her macro lenses, I have lenses to see magic and mystery. One day, shortly
after I moved here, I saw a stone man looking at me from the moss hill. He
comes alive when the light is just right, and speaks to me in low whispers that
tingle in my bones. This is my one hundredth blog post, and also a day when the
light is perfect to share some magic with you....