Why I *DO* This …

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I’d like to share something that happened, out of the *many* magical things that happen, in my art class.

On the left is my original painting, “ShadowTree” … I painted it a year ago, and have used it numerous times, to instruct many people how to paint it.

Many people show up to my classes, and work hard to *exactly* duplicate the original on display, despite how I assure them that art is an emotional medium, and their own subconscious mind (I dare to say their soul) comes out of them, and onto the canvas (I assure them that my OWN painting, done right in front of them, won’t look exactly like my own original)… in fact, THAT is what I’m here to do with them. NOT to teach them to merely paint better (or discover that they can paint at all), though that’s part of it – so I do offer technical instruction. However, my own deepest intention is to inspire any/everyone who takes a class with me to express and listen to what their own soul is saying to them.

Art is the vehicle. Self-intimacy, through self-expression, is the journey. And it’s a journey that never ends.

So, a few weeks ago, I showed up to teach a class to the one-and-only person who had signed up. I *showed up.* I didn’t cancel, though I could’ve justified that … I didn’t ask the student to apply her reservation to another class, though that’s how most businesses like this operate. I showed up — because something in MY soul said to do so.

She and I had a wonderfully intimate art-encounter … I sat next to her, and we talked about life, and love and challenges, while I showed her how to paint the painting that spoke most to her. She said that I should consider offering one-on-one’s. I may do just that.

As we were wrapping up, a man approached me, and asked if he and his friends could join in … I felt the “yes” inside, and said the “yes” outloud. Four of them joined in, two married couples, and asked if they could paint “ShadowTree” … of course.

I sensed immediately that they didn’t want to “copy” the original, but to be given the permission to listen to their own inner-inspiration. I opened the atmosphere (perhaps call it “sacred space”) for them to dig deep, listen-within, and discover what emerged on their canvases.

Neither had ever painted before.

His turned out to be strongly masculine, bold and solid, on an impressionistic background … hers was decidedly feminine, with swirls, and dancing branches. I was in awe, as were they, watching it unfold.

Once finished, she put them side by side, and decided to paint the branches so that they appear to be reaching out to each other, from across the canvases’ divide. Individual expressions, inter-dependently in support of each other.

She sent me the photo of them together … saying she intends to hang them above their bed.

THIS is why I do this.

Each soul being expressed on each canvas … self-intimacy through self-expression … on the journey that never ends.

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