Friday, June 3, 2011

Art With Intention

Craftcast with Allison Lee has a plethora of interesting podcasts that I have enjoyed lately. Many of them accompanied me in the long hours of organizing my attic studio and I have found them very inspiring. Today, I listened to episode #111 with Sherri Gaynor. Sherri's book, "Creative Awakenings Envisioning the Life of Your Dreams through Art", is a wonderful journey full of reminders, inspiring stories and techniques. When I read this book, having just finished Kelly Rae Roberts's "Taking Flight" and done all the "home work" in there, I did not go through the entire process outlined in "Creative Awakenings", but found it incredibly well named. We were in the middle of preparing our house for sale, so the section with Suzanne Simanaitis (Addition by Subtraction, An Artist Finds Herself Amidst the Clutter). Nothing like addressing everything you own right after moving almost all of your supplies up two floors. I had just decided that the sewing room could not house my mixed media supplies, organized for maximum function in our guest room and then we decided we needed to put the house on the market to fit our family's future plans. It was an overwhelming task, indeed. The book was enjoyable throughout and I'm sure the idea of setting an intention through your art was planted or re-planted by reading it. Since I chose the podcast randomly, (I couldn't see the full title since I was listening through iTunes on my iPhone... it is free, btw) I found it especially interesting that I would be reminded of this book today.

You see, a few days ago, I had a great need to process some heavy emotions. There was already a background painted that came to mind when I knew I had to work with my supplies. First, I started writing out what I was feeling in oil pencil; nothing elaborate, just a literal list of what I could identify. Using the yogic method of staying with each feeling, I focused on the physical sensations that occurred with the emotion. By the time I was a 1/4 way through the canvas, I wondered what else I could write, but that opened the door to move on to processing more and setting my intention to heal. With my canvas full of words, paint, ink, cheesecloth and vintage buttons followed. Taking a cue from art journaling, I didn't need all the words to show and because my purpose was processing, I didn't worry about the outcome or final product. The process, working with the supplies, and taking the time for myself were truly the most important parts of this piece.

Many belly dance performances have served as platforms for me to process as well and a few other art pieces I've made with intentions for the future. Perhaps you'll see them here soon... :)

How about you? Have you set an intention through art? I would love to hear about your experiences! Please comment below or drop me a message on FaceBook.

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