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As I wrote in my blog last week exploring emotions through your art ca be helpful and even necessary.
As human beings we all feel emotions. These can be simple or quite complicated. Throughout time we have used many outlets to express these emotions, with the knowledge that we feel better after expression.
We laugh, we cry, we rage, we glow…
Creating art to “get it out” or explore our turbulent emotions can provide catharsis for you ; if you have painted it in a way that allows your feelings to reach and touch others, catharsis for them as well.
Yearning for more than you can reach on your own, desiring with all your heart for assistance, your Higher Power, a fervent wish, a prayer for help for yourself, your friend, the world is a universal emotion. A chance pattern made by random on painted paper brought this supplicant to my painting; a human form stretching to the heavens was suggested by marks and I painted him in. To get his body correct I asked family members to pose for me, and took reference photos so they wouldn’t get tired from all that stretching. I first used diluted white tempera paint to block in his form, then added watercolor to detail.
Aspire- I can do this. The feeling of self certainty necessary to do what you dream of, really, really need to do. Again, looking upward but this time also inward; you do have what it takes, but must draw hard and deep to pull it out to make it happen. To help yourself, your cause, achieve your dream. This painting was done with a fast gesture drawing in black crayon, then painted with watercolor.
I think most of us have felt despair, it is an unfortunate condition of living. Loss, fear, illness, worry, failure are sadly universal occurrences in life, and when we feel helpless to affect these conditions depression can be overwhelming. I painted this young man to express my own helplessness as I watched a friend deal with depression, to try paint out some of the pain. I involved him in the process by asking him to pose for me, sitting pressed up against a glass window to created pressure points I could paint. This was an experiment for me in textural painting, and it helped me to vent my own feelings. The friend did recover.
Compassion is a beautiful and kind emotion we are gifted with. It causes us to act to help our fellow creatures on earth, to feel empathy for their suffering. It is an emotion that can create peace, provide comfort and love. For this painting I was intrigued by an expression on the model’s face, the angle of the head. As I began to paint though, the strength and longing in the face began to surface, the compassion in the eyes to emerge. The person began to feel angelic, full of empathy and kindness to me, and became a Guardian.
Hope is a paradox of a feeling; fragile as a flower, strong as a willow tree. As winds of change and chaos blow upon our lives, hope allows us to go on, to believe that better times are coming. I painted this, Colors of Hope, to show this feeling of ours. I started with a powdered pigment base ( see previous blog of mine, #16, Feb 20th ) then added watercolor paint to wrap the woman in a cloak of pattern and color, colors of hope to help her prayer.
Interesting to me as I write today, I examine my feelings as I painted each one of these works- I relive how I felt while painting them and feel what I felt. The people in them became very real to me as I worked, almost separate entities from me, my brushes and the paper they were on. Seems to me that I learned some things by creating them, felt what was needed to feel, and maybe, hopefully, showed them to viewers in a way they could feel and relate to in their own lives.
Emotions- the colors, patterns and tides within us all.